Establishing a robust endpoint security infrastructure can secure remote and hybrid employees from data breaches and compromises. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, enterprises are pivoting towards endpoint security to support remote working. Flexible working arrangements have compounded the requirement for creating cyber policies that facilitate secure home working.
A cyber security challenge with hybrid and remote working is linked to endpoint security. Having a remote infrastructure makes an organisation susceptible to endpoint security risks. A number of security risks which arise from remote computing may have been missed in an original cyber security strategy. For example, employees connecting to a work network without the use of a firewall. Besides, security teams have to provide additional cyber security for remote workers in the form of monitoring, analysing and detecting threats on a system while employees are working.
An organisation may be targeted by a spate of random attacks ranging from malware to ransomware. Cybercriminals are interested in generating maximum revenue through exploiting vulnerabilities which is why the size of an enterprise is never a concern for them. Small enterprises are an equal target offering lucrative benefits depending on how much damage a cyber threat imposes. Adversaries will search for unencrypted devices connected to a network from mobile phones to computers.
In a shift away from traditional legacy systems, cloud technologies present alternative endpoint security management and response solutions. Leveraging the cloud for early detection and monitoring purposes allows a business to use event logs for pattern recognition of suspicious endpoint behaviour. Utilise the data gathered from cloud endpoint monitoring and detection to apply proactive cyber security measures.
There are several options available to an organisation in terms of applying proactive cyber security measures on the cloud. Installing advanced endpoint security and response can prove beneficial providing monitoring capabilities beyond the immediate network of an enterprise. Using automation for early detection can prevent malicious applications from installing. An automated response supports comprehensive endpoint security providing transparency of a network.
Enforce cloud endpoint security with mandatory application of multi-factor authentication. If implementing multi-factor authentication is considered financially unviable, consider two-factor authentication which adds a second security barrier to applications. Most cloud-based applications offer easy implementation of either two-factor or multi-factor authentication.
Apply a constant monitoring of endpoint security approach and update organisational infrastructure to include security mechanisms for an adequate around the clock response. As part of a comprehensive cyber security strategy plan endpoint security to focus on protecting the most relevant digital assets while eliminating false positives regularly.
Ensure all employees working on hybrid or remote basis are connecting to company networks via a secure virtual private network (VPN). The necessity for an investment in a secure VPN network cannot be understated for enterprises of all sizes. For endpoint security related to legacy systems, ensure timely and regular system updates are applied immediately. Avoiding a system patch or delaying a software update is common cause of data breaches and cyber threats succeeding.
Ultimately, the best endpoint security is assured through knowledgeable and well informed employees. Therefore, invest in employee cyber security training programs that cover endpoint security awareness. For instance, all employees should have knowledge of endpoint security to a degree which covers basic cyber security awareness. Cyber security awareness can include microscopic details such as enforcing policies for remote workers that encourage locking a computer when away from the desk. Employees may consider this a trivial practice while working at home, yet company sensitive data is exposed to unauthorised individuals, even if it is family or friends of an employee.
Implement stringent policies for passwords and reiterate the importance of preventing unauthorised access. Recap basic cyber security policies regularly such as a member of staff must avoid jotting down passwords on a notebook or post-it notes. For complete endpoint security, employees require training on detecting phishing attempts. Organise various cyber security training workshop sessions which include guidance on detecting common cyber threats based on social engineering.14