Endpoint Security

What is Endpoint Security?

What is Endpoint Security?

Endpoint Security Helps You:

  • check_circle_outline Protect against infections
  • check_circle_outline Diagnose and treat issues
  • check_circle_outline Manage your IT infrastructure and roles
  • check_circle_outline Manage devices
  • check_circle_outline Prevent data loss

If you’ve ever been concerned about your business’s digital security, you might be wondering: what is endpoint security? It’s two big words that have huge ramifications for your business, your profits, your digital safety and more.

Endpoint security is a robust group of software that defends your device from malware, viruses, intruders and any assortment of malicious online and offline threats.

Endpoint devices can include laptops, desktops, cell phones, printers, servers and any other device that can connect to the internet. There’s a lot more to endpoint than just protection, though that is one of their major functions. We’ll break down a few of those features.

Protect against malware and other threats

On average, infections cost businesses $2.4 million annually, and costs continue to climb as newer and more sophisticated malware (such as ransomware) spreads. One of the cardinal features of endpoint security is that it proactively defends against a myriad of digital threats.

By utilizing vast libraries of “samples” (think of these as tissue samples carrying diseases), endpoint security is often able to identify a threat before it can infect your infrastructure, and give IT managers time to take precautions. Databases and proactive monitoring are a crucial component of endpoint security that defends against:

  • Viruses
  • Worms
  • Bots
  • Trojans

Another technique used by endpoint security is to consistently monitor files for discrepancies. File monitoring can prevent timed releases of malware, or illegitimate software installs. This goes hand-in-hand with device management, which we’ll cover further down.

In the event of a zero-day attack (a previously unknown software vulnerability that remains hidden until an attacker uses it to gain access) endpoint systems will often use historical and gathered intelligence to quickly mitigate the threat before significant damage can be done.

Diagnose and treat issues

What is endpoint security if it can’t diagnose issues and then treat them? Removing the threat and ensuring it can’t spread is a technique called “quarantining.” Quarantining involves moving infected files to safe “sandbox” (a clean digital environment that has no access to the rest of the system) and then analyzing them. Or it might be deleting malicious executables before they can be run.

In some cases, such as zero-day scenarios, the software can pull from historical data and previous infection criteria to mitigate (and in some cases prevent) critical exploitations.

Manage your IT infrastructure and roles

Device management and user hierarchies are key features of this software because they can help mitigate a more dangerous threat: intrusion. Cyber attacks aren’t simply just malware and malicious payloads. They’re often the result of an enterprising hacker exploiting the faults in your security and infrastructure (or tricking your users), and then attacking from the inside. High profile cases of infiltration have begun surface, with credit card giant Capital One being the victim of one of these attacks.

Thankfully, good security applications can help mitigate these attacks. How? Through a solution often known as access levels. Valuable data and critical infrastructure should not be available to all users, and this software can help you assign roles and hierarchies to users, resulting in different levels of system access, from the top down.

For example, let’s say one of your interns is tricked into handing over their username and password. Luckily, the hacker won’t get far, as the intern has been given only limited access to the system. They can’t export data, see valuable reports, or even interact with the system’s backend infrastructure, thus limiting the amount of damage they can do.

Manage devices

Devices are the bread and butter of any business these days. Very few organizations are able to scrape by without utilizing a workstation, laptop, or a company-issued cell phone. The trick is to be able to manage these devices because every one of them is a potential point of intrusion.

Endpoint security can help secure your equipment and prevent:

  • Unauthorized application or certificate installations
  • Data theft
  • Device theft

Usually, system administrators, using their endpoint apps, will set a list of software that can be installed on any given system, and then set the app to continually monitor that system if a user tries to install something that doesn’t match with the group policy.
Data and device theft is also a major concern for any organization, but with endpoint security, encryption is usually implemented to make it nearly impossible for hostile actors to steal data. And even if they have access to a device, endpoint security almost always allows for remote management. Devices can be easily wiped remotely or tracked for recovery.

Prevent data loss

Data loss is a very real issue for employees and IT managers. If a drive fails in a work-issued laptop, then that data is gone. Or if the device is stolen, it’s an even bigger liability.

Endpoint apps seek to remedy this by encrypting data from the get-go, and then backing up that data — either offsite or to an encrypted local storage device. They also implement “roll-back” features that allow users to restore the encrypted data up to a certain point — just as long as they have the proper encryption keys.

In the case of data theft, encrypted data is useless to an attacker without encryption keys.

FAQs

Is Endpoint Security Perfect?

The short answer is: no. With news of major data breaches, crippling malware and more, it’s been proven time and time again that no system is perfect — but you’re much, much better off with endpoint software than you are without it.

These applications do far more than just prevent hackers and malware from compromising your business. They also prevent unauthorized access by your own employees, they help secure and recover devices, and they give you greater control over your owns systems in the event of hardware or software failures.

How Do I Know I’m Ready For Endpoint Security?

There’s plenty of reason to start using an endpoint security product. If you have

  • Large numbers of users
  • Sensitive
  • A diverse pool of vulnerable devices
  • Have been the target of hacking or social engineering attacks in the past
  • Are worried about data loss

Then you are an ideal candidate for endpoint security

How Do I Select the Right Endpoint Security?

Because your business has unique needs, this isn’t always a straightforward question. First off, you should consider your requirements; what you absolutely need to have in your endpoint security software. If you don’t know where to start with this, we have a helpful requirements guide you can read up on.

After you’ve assessed your needs, turn your attention towards your wants. What do you want this software to do for you, that isn’t essential, but would be nice? Unlike your needs, these should be flexible, and you should be willing to budge on features.

Finally, there’s cost, which will be a major determining factor. Obviously, determine a budget and factor that into your final decision.

And once all of that is out of the way, you’re still not out of the woods yet, because now you’ve got to complete a request for purchase (RFP). RFPs are long and involved processes that require weeks, even months, to complete. Though this isn’t specific to endpoint security, we do have a guide on completing an RFP yourself.

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Endpoint security articles are written and edited by:

Jason Keller

Market Research Associate

Jason Keller is a Market Research Associate at SelectHub who writes content on Business Analytics Tools, Big Data Tools, Facility Management Software, Marketing Automation Software, Field Service Software and Endpoint Security Software. He studied journalism at the University of Northern Colorado, and in his free time likes reading and writing creatively, listening to music, hiking and hanging out with his dogs.

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Kim O’Shaughnessy

Lead Editor

Kim is the Lead Editor at SelectHub, where she edits and manages content for over 40 different software categories. She discovered her zeal for writing while earning her BA in Communications at the University of Michigan. Kim enjoys working on any project that offers a creative outlet, and you can often find her blogging about video games in her spare time. If someone manages to pry her away from the game controller, she also enjoys spending time with family and friends.

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Benefits of Cloud Endpoint Security

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According to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, small to midsize businesses (SMBs) are at a greater threat when it comes to cyberattacks than large corporations. While larger companies may have more at stake, SMBs typically have fewer resources to prevent and treat online threats, making them an appealing target. But many traditional endpoint security software systems are too large, complex and expensive for SMBs to make use of. Cloud endpoint security, however, offers the right price and ease of use for many SMBs, making it an excellent alternative to traditional systems.

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Online theft is the fastest-growing criminal act in the United States, but only 29 percent of companies report full confidence in their security management practices. If you’re reading this article, it’s probably because you fall in the 71 percent of companies unsure of how to best manage their security. A popular choice for businesses looking to solve this problem is endpoint protection software.

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Big List Of Endpoint Security Requirements And Features

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Did you know that 60 percent of cyber attacks on corporations come from people and devices inside the company? Whether the attacks are by malicious employees trying to steal information or by external hackers finding vulnerabilities in your infrastructure, endpoint security software can help protect your company’s valuable resources.

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5 Tips for Picking From the Best Endpoint Security Vendors

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Let’s say you’ve got teams working remotely, but you want them to be able to securely access your company network without compromising any corporate intel. Or maybe you just want to make sure that your users aren’t leaking important secrets, or worse, having them stolen by rogue software that’s been carelessly installed onto your managed system. If any of this sounds like your situation, then it’s time you started dipping into the wide realm of endpoint security vendors and the endpoint protection software solutions they offer.

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Endpoint Antivirus vs Endpoint Security: A Comprehensive Comparison of the Difference Between Them

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Did you know cyber attacks cost the global economy a staggering $400 billion per year? With advanced technology, cyber criminals are smuggling themselves into devices all around the world. However, there is software available to block these cyber attacks in the form of antivirus and endpoint security software. Both systems work to protect your company’s data and the systems that support your business. And while they’re not interchangeable terms for the same systems, there’s quite a bit of overlap between the two. To help you decide which product is best for you, we’ve broken down endpoint antivirus vs endpoint security.

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