As technology advances, cyberthreats also evolve, presenting new challenges for businesses of all sizes across all industries. Breaches in security have become increasingly costly as more and more companies store vast amounts of customer data and other sensitive information.
As a business owner or manager, it’s up to you to ensure the security of your business assets, your employees, and your customers against cyberthreats. A great way to accomplish this is to implement an endpoint security strategy. By taking this comprehensive approach, you can protect your entire business network, including vendors and anyone accessing your business’ data through remote or mobile devices.
What is Endpoint Security?
If you own a business that handles any sensitive data, you may want to find out what endpoint security is and how it works. At the most basic level, endpoint security is a cybersecurity strategy that combines prevention, detection, and response technologies with intelligence services to control data access and monitor potential threats.
The terms “endpoint security” and “endpoint protection” encompass not only a technology stack but a specific security strategy. They refer to the practice of securing endpoints (also known as entry points) from malicious activities. An endpoint is any device, including desktops, smartphones, and laptops, that receives a connection from an original data source, such as a business’ central server.
How Does Endpoint Security Work?
Endpoint security allows system admins to control the protection of all corporate endpoints by creating security policies and settings. The admin can grant or block access to certain websites or platforms to different employees, and they can base access on individual employees’ responsibilities. For instance, an admin can block access to sites known to distribute malware or any other malicious content.
Some endpoint security solutions even include endpoint detection and response (EDR) components that allow detection of more advanced threats, such as fileless malware, zero-day attacks, and polymorphic attacks.
For your business, you can purchase cloud-based or on-premises models of endpoint security. Both options use real-time machine learning to continuously monitor and adapt each endpoints’ threat detection and protection. While cloud-based products are scalable and easily integrate with existing architecture, some compliance or regulatory rules may require on-premises security.
Why Does Your Business Need Endpoint Security?
In the modern era, many businesses allow employees to use their own devices at work and grant employees, vendors, and clients remote access to their enterprise’s network. While these practices make workflow and management easier, they also introduce a new set of cybersecurity threats.
However, implementing an endpoint security strategy can help in dealing with such threats in various ways:
- Keeping Data Safe– For many businesses, data is their most valuable asset. Losing data or having data blocked due to ransomware can put an entire business at risk by bringing work to a halt. Setting up endpoint security protects data access by each endpoint device. It also prevents unauthorized persons and compromised devices from accessing your company’s data.
- Securing all Devices– Endpoint protection solutions also safeguard various endpoints of your business network. Not only does this security strategy protect against cyberattacks, but it also helps to monitor the condition of particular devices. For example, the software can track battery life, lags, and user authorization. The strategy also ensures all endpoints are secure before allowing them access to any business data.
- Saving Money and the Protecting Your Business’ Image– Dealing with the aftermath of a cybersecurity breach costs time and money. If a cyberattack breaches customer data, your company can take a massive hit to its reputation. Investing in high-quality endpoint security saves you the time and money it takes to recover from an attack. In some cases, ransomware attacks can cost thousands or even millions of dollars.
What Programs Help with Endpoint Security?
As previously mentioned, endpoint security consists of both technology and strategy. The best security solution is to invest in a single, comprehensive endpoint protection platform. However, if your business can’t afford to take this route, you can purchase a combination of less expensive security software for protection, although limited. Consider the following tools:
- Internet Security Applications: Instruct all of your employees to only use browsers with built-in protections against harmful websites, such as iOS browsers.
- Firewalls: These programs monitor outgoing and incoming traffic to ensure that only safe connections succeed.
- Intrusion Detection Applications: These are programs or devices that monitor networks for policy violations or malicious activities. If the tool detects any suspicious activity, it reports the breach to an administrator.
- Mobile Device Management Applications: Such applications allow you to control stolen or misplaced devices to prevent unauthorized access to sensitive business data.
Risks Outweigh the Costs
A security breach (hacking, viruses, malware, etc.) in your company’s servers can cost your business immensely. In the worst cases, the ramifications of cyberattacks bankrupt their victims. Cyberthreats are so rampant that it’s no longer a question of if you’ll be hit, but when. Before it’s too late, take preventative measures to protect your company and customers.