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Step-By-Step Guide for Better Endpoint Protection

Endpoints make up much of a company’s network and IT infrastructure. This is a collection of computers, mobile devices, servers, and smart gadgets. As well as other IoT devices that all connect to the company network. The number of endpoints a company has will vary by business size:

Organizations with less than 50 employees have about 22 endpoints.

Small businesses with 50-100 employees average 114 endpoints.

Enterprise organizations with over 1,000 employees have about 1,920 endpoints.

Each of those devices is an opportunity for hackers to penetrate a company’s defenses. They could plant malware or gain access to sensitive company data. An endpoint security strategy addresses endpoint risk and puts focused tactics in place.

64% of organizations have experienced one or more compromising endpoint attacks. In this guide, we’ll provide you with straightforward solutions. Solutions focused on protection of endpoint devices.

Make Note of Password Vulnerabilities

Passwords are one of the biggest vulnerabilities when it comes to endpoints. The largest data breaches all the time are related to leaked passwords. Do you remember the RockYou2021 breach? It exposed the largest number of passwords ever – 3.2 billion. Poor password security and breaches make credential theft one of the biggest dangers to cybersecurity. Address password vulnerabilities in your endpoints. Here at ThreatAdvice, we believe in the power of training your employees on password creation and handling. Another tip–look for passwordless solutions, like biometrics Install multi-factor authentication (MFA) on all accounts.

Stop Malware Infection Before OS Boot

USB drives (also known as flash drives) are a popular giveaway item at trade shows. But an innocent-looking USB can actually cause a data breach. One trick that hackers use to gain access to a computer is to boot it from a USB device containing malicious code. Prevent this from happening by following best practices, such as using firmware protection. This includes Trusted Platform Module (TPM) and Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) Security. TPM is resistant to physical tampering and tampering via malware. It looks at whether the boot process is occurring properly. It also monitors for the presence of anomalous behavior. Additionally, look to utilize devices & security solutions that allow you to disable USB boots.

Update All Endpoint Security Solutions

Regularly update your endpoint security solutions. It’s best to automate software updates if possible, instead of leaving them up to chance. Firmware updates are often forgotten about. One reason is that they don’t usually pop up the same types of warnings as software updates, but they are just as important for ensuring your devices remain secure and protected. It’s best to have an IT professional managing all your endpoint updates–they'll make sure updates happen on time, and will also ensure that devices and software update smoothly.

Use Modern Device & User Authentication

How are you authenticating users to access your network, business apps, and data? If you're using only a username and password, then your company is at high risk of a breach.

Use these two modern methods for authentication:

  1. Contextual authentication - this takes MFA a step further. It looks at context-based cues for authentication and security policies, such as what time of day someone is logging in, their geographic location, and the device they are using.
  2. Zero Trust approach - this approach continuously monitors your network. It ensures every entity in a network belongs there. Safelisting of devices is an example of this approach. You approve all devices for access to your network and block all others by default.

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Apply Security Policies Throughout the Device Lifecycle

From the time a device is first purchased to the time it retires, you need to have security protocols in place. Tools like Microsoft AutoPilot and SEMM allow companies to automate. They deploy healthy security practices across each lifecycle phase. This ensures a company doesn't miss any critical steps. When a device is first issued to a user, you should remove unnecessary privileges. When a device moves from one user to another, it needs to be properly cleaned of old data and reconfigured for the new user. When you retire a device, it should be properly scrubbed. This means deleting all information and disconnecting it from any accounts.

Prepare for Device Loss or Theft
Unfortunately, mobile devices and laptops get lost or stolen. When that happens, you should have a sequence of events that can take place immediately. This prevents company risk of data and exposed business accounts. Prepare in advance for potential device loss through backup solutions. You also should use endpoint security that allows remote lock and wipe for devices.

Reduce Your Endpoint Risk Today!

Get help putting robust endpoint security in place, step by step. We can help! Contact ThreatAdvice today for a free consultation. Article used with permission from The Technology Press.