5 Best Practices for protecting the End Point
Posted on May 5th, 2015
Designing a multilayered protection strategy takes diligence and deep analysis of your infrastructure. In the past, a three point protocol – antivirus, firewall, patch management – seemed sufficient to cover most external threats and perimeter issues. However, the complexity of the attack landscape demands more today than a simplified approach. A focus on endpoint protection is foundational.
Internal + External Protection = Stronger Security
Starting with the basics, it’s as important to defend against internal threats as it is to defend the perimeter. Protecting your infrastructure isn’t like a game of tag – there shouldn’t be any home-free spaces. Some experts are suggesting endpoint coverage isn’t necessary any more, but taking that approach is an open invitation to cyber-attacks. Instead, deploy antimalware detection techniques and tools that include host-based intrusion blocking features and full-disk encryption.
Plan for the Future: It is Already Here
Designing a central endpoint management architecture that integrates access controls gives an organization leverage against constantly evolving cyber-schemes. Coverage must include all access points, not only those identified as potential threats. For example, when you need to provide access (or service) to diverse populations you can deploy application whitelisting to increase endpoint protection. Whitelisting limits installation and execution on a designated endpoint. You can block applications with known weaknesses from accessing sensitive content without authorization.
Manage Diverse Device Access
Web-based solutions are everywhere today. Maintaining tight port control is critical for security teams. Any removable media should be considered a potential threat. USB drives, smart phones, printers, etc. require rigorous oversight. Device control reduces exposure to malware and inappropriate data sharing. In addition to prohibiting access, controlling conversations provides an added layer of protection in conjunction with DLP technology to limit the types of data stored on removable media. DLP technology serves dual functions – monitoring activity and/or enforcing corporate data sharing policies. Both levels provide valuable logs that allow IT managers to spot potential threats in the data stream. Insights gained may be used to fine-tune security measures, reducing risks.
Know System Vulnerabilities and Modify Your Security Plan
As long as there are unscrupulous people in the world, there exists the potential for attack. Vulnerability assessment software attempts to identify known weaknesses at the endpoint. Samples of items detected include missing patches and misconfigurations in security parameters. However, working with an experienced systems integrator, like TVAR, provides a more in-depth analysis and in general saves enterprises from investing in unnecessary hardware and software that may be obsolete with the next innovative attack model.
Educate Your Team
This best-practice may seem cliché or unnecessary, but sometimes the simplest measures have the biggest impact on endpoint coverage. One study reports that almost 40% of state and local government officials don’t bother to lock their devices. Train your staff and third-party vendors about the risks of complicity.
Find the Right Expertise
The best place to start is with an in-depth exploration of your current architecture and security protocol. TVAR works with best-in-class technologies such as Fortinet to reduce your risk without compromising vital access and service delivery. Working with experts who understand your unique requirements and partner with you to build the best security architecture is essential to keeping your data safe and your organization secure.
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