This post is also available in: German
The working world has undergone major changes. Models like bring your own device (BYOD), New Work, and the Internet of Things (IoT) have well and truly turned IT departments upside down. What’s more, traditional security management tools no longer offer adequate protection in a modern and multifaceted world of work. Instead, integrated solutions that protect devices and networks and feature modern analysis functions and prevention tools are in high demand. This is because the threat level can change dynamically, and a company’s own employees will continue to cause many incidents.
When it comes to security, one thing’s for certain: You can never have one-hundred percent protection. But with the right security management strategy, companies can best protect themselves against internal and external threats. That’s why companies should factor in their IT infrastructure’s security as early on as the conceptual design. If they resort to IT security measures too late, then this will either cause costs to skyrocket, or existing processes and working methods to be changed. For that reason, companies should incorporate and implement data security and protection measures when new devices are first introduced.
Many experts and IT analyst companies came up with the term “endpoint security management” to describe this process. This concept stipulates that previously defined IT security guidelines are complied with in integrating new end devices (endpoints) within the network. The word “endpoints” refers to technologies ranging from computers and laptops, to smart devices and smartphones, right through to scanners and printers.
Security management and user experience – achieving the perfect balance
If companies do not uphold sufficient security measures when integrating new endpoints, the device will constitute a security risk immediately after it has been commissioned. This holds the door wide open for malware attacks, hacker attacks, and data breaches – which must not happen under any circumstances, no matter how big or small the company is or in which industry it operates. Companies have to ensure that all systems are sufficiently protected and that no security gaps exist at all times. A full-scale, centralized approach is the only way of efficiently making this a reality.
Analysts such as Forrester and Gartner also consider the all-encompassing perspective entailed in endpoint security management to be the right approach and of the utmost importance. Forrester believes that these platforms don’t just have to feature client management and enterprise mobility management, but also additional control mechanisms for administering end users and security measures. This means that it is necessary to find the right balance between security and the user experience, because users must be able to simply and flexibly work at all times.
Reducing the IT department’s workload with the help of security management
Many IT administrator tasks can be automated extremely efficiently by means of endpoint security management. This allows operating systems and software packages to be installed, features to be inventoried, and programs to be regularly updated. The time savings gained enable employees to dedicate themselves to more important tasks like license optimization or increasing IT security, for example.
Ideally, the individual components of client management and enterprise mobility management (UEM), identity and access management and endpoint security, IT service management, and software asset management should perfectly complement each other within endpoint security management. What’s most effective is when companies are able to integrate and automate all of these solutions from the very outset.
Integrated solution concept
“Security by design” shouldn’t become an important part of the overall concept only when new hardware or software is to be migrated. An assessment is necessary to begin with. We recommend an IT asset management solution that simplifies inventory management and includes hardware and software inventory information. It is also important to know during this stage exactly how, where, and using which data employees work. This makes the subsequent IT risk analysis and evaluation easier.
The measures required can thus be determined on the basis of all the facts at hand:
- Protection made up of antivirus and firewall solutions
- Data encryption
- Data access control
- GDPR: Data access accordingly
- Application security and controls
- Patch management
- Post-infection measures
Companies have to install and activate these steps automatically for each new commissioning. That’s why it’s easiest for them to implement endpoint security by means of software distribution.
It is only when all of these (and many more) measures are carried out in a holistic way – and are traceable – that endpoint security management is considered to truly be in place.