CIS Automation — Benefits to Consider

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The Center for Internet Security (CIS) Controls, formerly known as the SANS Top 20, are a set of prioritized security measures for defending against common cyber threats. They provide practical guidance for reducing your attack surface to mitigate cyber risks such as data breaches and downtime. They are regularly updated to reflect changing technologies and threats, and are not industry-specific.

Why You Should Automate CIS Controls

As hacking strategies become more complex and the cost of breaches grows, organizations need to implement the CIS Controls effectively. Automation helps ensure that controls are reliably deployed and enforced across the IT ecosystem to reduce vulnerability to cyberattacks.

How Netwrix Supports Automating CIS Controls

Netwrix Change Tracker can help organizations automate many of the CIS Controls. This comprehensive solution monitors all changes to your hardened security posture and alerts you to any unexpected and potentially harmful modifications. It also enables you to easily review system and services configuration at any time. Let’s explore the specific benefits of CIS Controls automation you can achieve with Netwrix Change Tracker.

Improved Security

The key benefit of implementing CIS Controls is improved security. By automating core controls such as vulnerability assessment, system hardening and audit logging with Netwrix Change Tracker, your organization can proactively reduce its attack surface area, as well as promptly detect and respond to unplanned changes that cause systems to deviate from your hardened security posture — both on premises and in the cloud.

Setup Consistency and Standardization

One of the key reasons to automate the CIS Controls is to ensure repeatability and structure in your security processes. The controls provide a defined architecture and process for organizations that are easy to follow regardless of size or industry. Netwrix Change Tracker enables organizations to benefit from the knowledge and expertise of industry leaders by establishing strong configurations based on industry standards (as shown below), as well as conducting ongoing vulnerability scanning and utilizing a dynamically updated CVE database.

Achieving Continuous Compliance

Another benefit of automating CIS Controls is the ability to achieve and maintain continuous compliance. The controls overlap with security best practices and compliance frameworks such as NIST 800-53 and ISO 27000, and regulations like PCI DSS, HIPAA and NERC CIP. Netwrix Change Tracker gives organizations a solid starting point for action and enables them to continue to comply with regulatory requirements more quickly in case they change.

Boosting Productivity and Cost Saving

Automating CIS Controls can also improve productivity while saving time and money. The controls were designed to help organizations quickly direct resources towards actions with high-value payoff and focus on additional risks unique to their business. For example, Netwrix Change Tracker helps you spot and remediate misconfigurations, which is a crucial part of the CIS Controls. By automating the process of change management and change detection, organizations can quickly identify misconfigurations and improve their security posture.


Automating the CIS Controls is essential for organizations looking to improve their cybersecurity posture. The benefits of automating the controls include repeatability and structure, access to knowledge and expertise, continuous compliance, improved productivity and resource savings, strong baseline configurations, and improved security. Organizations can automate the CIS Controls with Netwrix Change Tracker software to implement a risk-based approach to cybersecurity that helps achieve reliability, scalability and continuous security across the IT infrastructure.