I had a lovely chat with one of my favorite CISOs the other day, helping them think through the security metrics that they report upwards. Front and center, as I see in almost every security metrics presentation, was a pair of my least favorite monthly measurements: average age of open vulnerabilities, and total open vulnerabilities.
I don’t hate a lot of things—okay, actually, I might actually hate a lot of things, but very few things top the professional hatred I have for vulnerability metrics reporting. At best, they are a measurement of activity, not of effectiveness. They remind me of the old firewall reports (“Look at how many port scans we stopped!”), which I’ll admit I had a special loathing for because security teams would block their web teams from using a content delivery network (CDN) simply because they would lose this report. [Disclosure: I used to be CISO at Akamai.]