Why endpoint security is key to protecting your network

Endpoint security is key to protecting end-user devices such as desktops, laptops, and mobiles from malicious attacks such as data breaches.

Rob Stevens

11/03/2021

How do you defend your employees?

There are countless security solutions on the market today intended to protect and empower the modern business. Unfortunately, there’s one area that many companies tend to overlook: endpoint security.

Endpoint security refers to the art of securing critical endpoints, from the smartphones your field workers use to the desktops of remote employees.

As new technologies and hybrid working become more common, endpoints are emerging as a window for criminal access. Fail to lock these entry points down correctly, and your business data could be at risk.

What is endpoint security?

Endpoints are the devices that your employees interact with in your business to access crucial software, platforms, and data. A laptop could be an endpoint, as could a desktop computer, terminal, tablet, or smartphone.

Endpoint security is the practice of securing endpoints to ensure that they’re not exposed to unnecessary dangers. The right solution may include a wide range of offerings, from data management tools to ransomware protection, firewalls, and two-factor authentication.

Though endpoint security isn’t a new concept, it’s becoming increasingly critical as more businesses make the shift into a remote and mobile working environment. A rapid transition into a new style of working in recent months has pushed companies to adapt their network to suit a dispersed team. Employees are increasingly connected to less than secure Wi-Fi networks and carrying devices with them on the move.

Crucial features of endpoint security

According to Gartner, the growth of ransomware attacks and fileless data-breach techniques is prompting a new resurgence in demand for endpoint security tools. The exact features of endpoint protection you access for your team will differ depending on the needs of your business. However, common features include:

  • Firewalls: Firewalls should be able to cover all the endpoints that your employees use, to ensure that criminals are unable to access your network from any device. Endpoint security solutions should come with firewall settings management options, so companies can choose where traffic may be allowed into the business.
  • Antivirus updates: Endpoint security solutions can automatically detect if anti-virus and security programs are installed and up to date on all devices. The correct investment may even allow you to automatically distribute the right solutions to members of staff.
  • Application and device control: Mobile device management is an essential component of endpoint security. IT teams and supervisors need to be able to delete dangerous applications and files from a distance. MDM can also ensure that employers can wipe a stolen device before criminals get their hands-on data.
  • Ransomware technology: Ransomware solutions should protect employees from accessing files and services that might lead to criminals collecting valuable data. End-to-end encryption, data loss prevention, and protection from phishing scams will be crucial here.
  • Data management: Data loss prevention solution prevents access violations caused by employees, whether intentional or otherwise. DLP can also allow organisations to block certain files transmitted via instant message or email.
  • Integrations: Many endpoint security tools can integrate with other security systems within the workforce such as firewalls. These tools can share and ingest information about threats to learn from each other and support things like intrusion prevention and network monitoring.
  • Monitoring technology: The right endpoint solutions will make it easier for IT professionals to track trends in attacks and security issues. Some services even come with machine learning capabilities that allow bots to recognise trends and prevent them to teams.
  • Incident investigation: Centralised and automated tools within the solution should be able to recognise issues in the security landscape and alert professionals immediate. Automated incident response services are common among leading tools.

An endpoint security solution needs to be flexible, adaptable, and ready to support the needs of any team. Many of the leading solutions on the market today come with support for all operating systems. What’s more, cloud-based endpoint security software means that business leaders can roll the technology out to all employees faster.

Why do companies need endpoint security?

Centralised network protection may not cover enough of the business landscape to protect against all attacks. Shifting security perimeters in the world of remote work mean that companies need to be ready to adapt to a changing landscape, with new endpoint vulnerabilities.

Unsecured endpoints are often more costly than companies realise. The global expenditure for recovering physical and digital assets goes over $6 million a year.  Every organisation needs to be aware of the digital perimeter that they’re creating with their devices, and how they can secure that environment in the years to come.

Crucially, endpoint security isn’t plainly important for saving teams money and protecting business reputations. For many companies in a range of industries, the proper protection of endpoints is essential to meeting regulatory and compliance demands.

Are your endpoints secure enough? Reach out to Nice Network today for advice on how to improve your security strategy.