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How Risk Levels Are Estimated

As mentioned, dashboard and built-in reports give you a bird's eye view of the following high-risk areas:

  • User and computer accounts
  • Permissions
  • Data
  • Infrastructure

Within each area, Netwrix Auditor industry experts identified risk categories and suggested guidelines for them. For example, if the number of administrative accounts in your organization is less than 2%, the risk should be considered insufficient. If the value is between 2% and 3%, the risk is moderate, while any value that exceeds 3% should be considered a high risk. These guidelines are based on security best practices and analytical data.

The product compares your environment configuration against these metrics and assigns a risk level to each category. The risk levels in each category determine the overall risk level for the area you review. The following risk levels are used:

Risk level Color Comments
Low Green Keep monitoring your environment on a regular basic.
Medium Yellow Proactively mitigate risks and adjust your workflows before a breach occurs.
High Red Respond to the threat as soon as possible.

Calculation formulas for each metric are provided in the table below.

NOTE: The following signs are used to define risk level intervals and threshold values:

  • > —More than, exclusive
  • ≥ —This value or more, inclusive
  • = —Equals
  • < —Less than, exclusive
  • ≤ —This value or less, inclusive
  • [ ] —Inclusive interval
  • ( ) —Exclusive interval
  • [ ) or ( ] —Half-closed interval, where 1 value is inclusive and the other is exclusive or vice versa.
Risk Assessment formula Default risk level thresholds

Users and computers

User accounts with "Password never expires" Number of enabled user accounts with Password never expires property set
  • 0 — Low
  • [1 – 5] — Medium
  • > 5 — High
User accounts with "Password not required"

Number of enabled user accounts with Password not required property set

NOTE: Interdomain trust accounts are excluded from total count.

  • 0 — Low
  • [1 – 2] — Medium
  • > 2 — High
Disabled computer accounts Number of disabled computer accounts / Overall number of computer accounts (%)
  • ≤ 1% — Low
  • (1% – 3%) — Medium
  • ≥ 3% — High
Inactive user accounts

Number of inactive but enabled users / Overall number of enabled user accounts (%)

  • 0% — Low
  • (0% – 1%) — Medium
  • ≥ 1% — High
Inactive computer accounts Number of inactive but enabled computer accounts / Overall number of enabled computer accounts (%)
  • 0% — Low
  • (0% – 3%) — Medium
  • ≥ 3% — High
Servers with Guest account enabled* Number of servers with enabled Guest account / Overall number of servers (%)
  • 0%— Low
  • (0% - 1%] — Medium
  • >1% — High
Servers that have local user accounts with "Password never expires"* Servers that have local user accounts with Password never expires / Overall number of servers (%)
  • 0% — Low
  • >0% — High
Permissions

User accounts with administrative permissions

Number of administrative accounts / Overall number of accounts (%)

 

  • ≤ 2%— Low
  • (2% – 3%) — Medium
  • ≥ 3% — High

Administrative groups

Number of administrative groups / Overall number of groups (%)

 

  • ≤ 2% — Low
  • (2% – 3%) — Medium
  • ≥ 3% — High
Administrative group membership sprawl* Number of Windows servers whose Local Administrators Group members differ from those specified in the whitelist / Overall number of servers (%)
  • 0% — Low
  • >0% — High

Empty security groups

Number of security groups without members / Overall number of security groups (%)

  • ≤ 1% — Low
  • (1% – 2%) — Medium
  • ≥ 2% — High
Site collections with the "Get a link" feature enabled Number of site collections with the Get a link feature enabled / Total number of site collections (%)
  • ≤30% — Low
  • (30% - 60%) — Medium
  • ≥60% — High
Sites with the "Anonymous access" feature enabled Number of sites with the Anonymous access feature enabled / Total number of sites (%)
  • ≤30% — Low
  • (30% - 60%) — Medium
  • ≥60% — High
Site collections with broken inheritance Number of site collections with broken inheritance / Total number of site collections (%)
  • ≤30% — Low
  • (30% - 60%) — Medium
  • ≥60% — High

Data

Files and folders accessible by Everyone

Files and folders shared with Everyone security group /Overall number of shared folders (%)

  • ≤ 1% — Low
  • (1% – 5%) — Medium
  • ≥ 5% — High

File and folder names containing sensitive data

Number of files and folders with names that suggest they contain sensitive data

  • 0 — Low
  • 1 — Medium
  • > 1 — High

Potentially harmful files on file shares

Number of detected harmful files

  • 0 — Low
  • 1 — Medium
  • > 1 — High

Direct permissions on files and folders

Number of shared objects with at least one direct permission / Overall number of shared objects (%)

  • 0% — Low
  • (0% – 5%) — Medium
  • ≥ 5% — High
Documents and list items accessible by Everyone and Authenticated Users Number of documents and list items shared with the Everyone and Authenticated Users groups / Total number of documents and list items (%)
  • ≤25% — Low
  • (25% - 50%) — Medium
  • ≥50% — High
Infrastructure
Servers with inappropriate operating systems* Number of Windows servers with OS not included in the whitelist / Overall number of servers (%)
  • 0% — Low
  • >0% — High
Servers with under-governed Windows Update configurations* Number of servers with Windows Update configuration source set to Local Settings AND/OR with auto-update set to Not configured or Disabled / Overall number of servers (%)
  • 0% — Low
  • >0% — Medium
Servers with unauthorized antivirus software* Number of Windows servers with antivirus tools not included in the whitelist / Overall number of servers (%)
  • 0% — Low
  • >0% — High

* -here the Overall number of servers means the number of Windows servers for which data collection was a success. That said, this count may vary across the risks. In such a case, it is recommended to examine Netwrix Auditor health log and omit lists.

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