Boost endpoint security for the fall

by Charles Leaver

November 6, 2013

access_time 4 min read

Fall is a time for employees to return to set work schedules, as many take time off during the summer for vacations and other activities. However, while some personnel were away during the past season, companies should pay special attention to endpoint security to prevent data leakage this fall.

Taking time off
Employee absences are more common during the summer, and as workers return to work, companies should take certain steps to make sure systems are up to date for the fall and beyond. HealthIT Security pointed out that employees may return to work to discover an uninstalled security patch or update, or a new program or blacklisted application. Employees should make sure to update all systems and make sure security software is up to date to prevent any data leakage.

Additionally, employees may have utilized unprotected Wi-Fi networks while on vacation, such as a hotel or residential wireless system. Administrators should closely monitor endpoint security upon employees' return for data loss prevention and to ensure the system hasn't been hacked. Furthermore, employers should move quickly to remove any malware that may have been installed to an endpoint via an unsecured connection, according to IT Business Edge.

Remote access monitoring
In an effort to remain connected, some employees download remote access tools on their personal devices to access files and other work material while on vacation. However, if these additional endpoints are not monitored, they can be easy access points for cybercriminals to snoop or steal company data. IT Business Edge recommended removing any remote security tools that employees may have downloaded on vacation for optimum endpoint protection.

HealthIT Security also suggested monitoring exactly what employees are sharing over remote connections. If employees transmit sensitive files while working remotely and their password isn't complex enough, they could also be sharing this information with a hacker without knowing it. Administrators should make sure employees are aware of the best ways to share data as well as all security practices and protocols employed by the organization.

Additionally, IT security teams should pay special attention to any antivirus software that may have been disabled on an endpoint as well as unauthorized software. Promisec research stated that more than 20 percent of endpoints are threatened by security risks undetected by the security team, according to IT Business Edge.

With quick responses to any out of date systems and endpoint monitoring, a company can address additional security risks that come with the summer season and get their organization secure and ready for fall.