Essential 8

The ASD official security framework for Microsoft Windows-based environments

Looking for a partner to assess your Essential 8 compliance? We can help.

The Essential Eight is a framework designed by the Australian Signals Directorate (ASD) to help organisations assess and protect themselves against various cyber threats. 

Although the principles behind the Essential 8 framework can be applied in Mac or Linux-based environments, they are more appropriate within Microsoft Windows-based networks as they are tailored to align seamlessly with their architecture and operational dynamics.

Windows, being widely used in corporate and governmental organisations, presents a landscape that is often targeted by cyber threats. The Essential 8 framework leverages the inherent features and security mechanisms of Windows to fortify defences, optimise system integrity, and enhance threat detection capabilities. 

The Essential 8 strategies are:

  • Application Control,
  • Patch Applications,
  • Configure Microsoft Office Macro Settings,
  • User Application Hardening,
  • Restrict Administrative Privileges,
  • Patch Operating Systems,
  • Multi-Factor Authentication,
  • Regular Backups.

By focusing on the strengths and common vulnerabilities of Windows networks, the Essential 8 delivers a comprehensive defence posture that is both effective and efficient, ensuring that organisations can maintain resilience against a broad spectrum of cyber threats.


Maturity Levels

Alongside the mitigation strategies, maturity levels have been defined to help organisations assess their level of protection for each area of the framework. 

  • Maturity Level 0: There are weaknesses in the organisation's cyber security postures which cause significant risks to its systems and data.
  • Maturity Level 1: The organisation is at risk of being compromised in a widespread attack targeting publicly-available vulnerabilities.
  • Maturity Level 2: Adversaries will be more selective in their targeting but will still apply well-known tradecraft in order to gain access and weaken the security of the targeted system. After gaining access, they might destroy the data (including backups).
  • Maturity Level 3: The adversaries' goal is not only to penetrate the systems but to extend their access, evade detection, and solidify their presence. Once they gain a foothold, they seek privileged credentials, pivot within the network, and cover their tracks.


Your Guide to Securing Your Environment With the ASD Essential 8

Contains: Essential 8 mitigation strategies, maturity levels, how to assess your environment, how to create a mitigation plan, and more.

How Venn can support you with your Essential Eight implementation

When it comes to protecting your organisation’s data against malicious attacks, you can’t afford to cut corners. By investing in the best partner, organisations can minimise the risk of instability and can gain confidence that their data is secure and accessible at all times.

Regardless of which stage or level of maturity your organisation is in, Venn can assist in your organisation’s strategy to effectively secure data from adversaries.

We are specialists in enterprise data protection solutions and recognise the unique challenge of managing Microsoft-based environments and backup operations, especially within the context of cybersecurity attack prevention.

Our strong background working with best-of-breed hardware, software, and professional services, means that we are expertly equipped to manage complex technology environments. Whilst what we offer is complex, our solutions are tailored to meet your business objectives and goals and we simply provide peace of mind. 

Business Requirements
We will first work with you to understand your business requirements, your current state, and the maturity level you are targeting.
Gap Assessment
Our team will go through the mitigation strategies of your desired maturity level and provide you with a gap assessment to evaluate your current position.
Mitigation Recommendations
We will provide you with a list of recommendations in order for you to reach your maturity level compliance.
Venn can also assist you in implementing some or all of the recommended actions.

How does your organisation measure against the Essential 8 framework?

Talk to our team to find out.