Endpoint Management & Security for Small Business
Today’s IT security standards require business owners to treat every computer or device as a breach point and manage devices accordingly. In the past, a firewall may have been enough for small business network security. Today, Zero Trust Security principles are needed, and they includ comprehensive endpoint management.
TUCU is a Toronto Managed Services Provider for small business. Our Managed advantage Plan is designed to help SMB’s meet compliance, enforce security, protect data and limit risk, while also providing help desk services to support teams at work.
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Common Components Of Endpoint Management
Endpoint Management has several key components. Often, people learning about cyber security confuse patch management and endpoint management, when in fact patch management is a component of overall endpoint management.
Endpoint management is looking at each device as a breach point, and taking all actions to limit the risk of breach or minimize the damage upon breach. This is the foundation of Zero Trust Security and modern IT practices.
Patch management is one of the most common culprits in SMB breaches.
The software you use to run your business is pulled apart by cyber criminals and cyber security experts, looking for vulnerabilities in the software code that can be used to hack into your accounts and gain a foothold.
The security experts write new code to “patch” the vulnerability and push it out to all users. Most users ignore those pop ups for days, weeks or months. Every single security audit we have performed on a small business has had multiple unpatched, and therefore highly vulnerable computers in the bunch.
What if you could automate the application of these patches, and your team of users were not relied upon to take time from their day to do them?
As your Managed Services Provider. We automate patch management for you so patches are applied daily and weekly depending on priority and risk level. Then, all patches are double checked every Wednesday.
This significantly reduces your vulnerability and risk of breach.
Cyber criminals work on coding new malware, adware, spyware, ransomware and threats everyday, and then sell those exploit kits on the black market to other cyber criminals. They make money both from the application and sale of their code kits.
To combat these threats, antivirus companies have to also work everyday to write new software code identify and block those threats. They earn money to pay their team of computer scientists by charging for their antivirus products.
Free antivirus software is not updated regularly enough and is considered by IT professionals to be fairly useless. This is why you must invest in actively updated antivirus for small business, such as BitDefender. However, AV software alone is not enough.
Some vulnerabilities are not immediately detected and coded for, and can get through antivirus filters, causing damage to your business. This is why a layered approach to computer security is necessary.
Endpoint management and all its components are just one layer of a cyber security posture. Other layers might include Identity Access Management, password policy enforcement and other policies applied from within Active Directory or Azure AD, a firewall and IDS/APS systems, and more.
Administrative Restriction & Control
Administrative restriction is an important part of reducing cyber risk.
All computers ship with full administrative privileges which allow you to install new software on to your new computer. Once setup, the safe method is to create a standard user profile for day to day computing needs and only ever use the administrative profile to perform occasional new installations or patches. Standard user profiles can not install new software but can work all day without any issue. Why are standard user profiles a good idea?
If a new malware evades detection and makes it on to a device, but can’t execute its software code, then it remains inert and will likely be cleaned and removed when an update for it is released.
However, if it can run its nefarious program, then the computer is infected.
A simple click on a bad link or opening of an infected attachment is enough to launch the malware program to run.
These drive by and accidental installations are all but eliminated when you grant standard access to users and reserve administrative control for your IT team only.
Endpoint Detection & Remediation
Endpoint Detection & Remediation (EDR) or endpoint detect and respond, is a highly sophisticated cyber security toolset which gives you visibility into activity on your devices so that threat detection can occur at a deeper level.
Antivirus is a prevention tool in endpoint security. It aims to stop known threats at the border o to speak. Some threats slip past the AV software and this is where EDR comes in, seeing the abnormal activity on an endpoint, and quarantining it for a security check by your IT team before it is allowed to move laterally to another computer via email or network connections.
EDR is often a compliance requirement for many industries and business service agreements.
Now that you have an understanding of endpoint security and management, you can see the value in working with a technology provider who can automate, monitor and manage these systems for you. Managed Services are a total IT strategy for small business, are affordable, and help keep your business running smoothly.
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