The most trusted and the largest source for information security training and security certification in the world SANS institute brings guidelines of 20 Critical Security Controls for Effective Cyber Defense. For those who don’t know SANS Institute was established in 1989 as a cooperative research and education organization. It also develops, maintains the largest collection of research documents about various aspects of information security, and it operates the Internet’s early warning system – the ISC (Internet Storm Center). ISC is program from SANS which monitors the level of malicious activity on the Internet. More about it you can check here.
These Top 20 Controls were agreed upon by a powerful consortium like NSA, US Cert, DoD JTF-GNO, the Department of Energy Nuclear Laboratories, Department of State, DoD Cyber Crime Center plus the top commercial forensics experts and pen testers that serve the banking and critical infrastructure communities. Well, all of them are in USA but it does not mean that you cant use it.
As states on SANS page the automation of these Top 20 Controls will radically lower the cost of security while improving its effectiveness.
You may ask whats in it for you, well if you are concerned about a security and want to asses and implement security procedure in you organization you may follow these up to date guidelines. Also there is quite good explained how hackers exploit lack of these controls and how to implement and automate these controls.