What is Endpoint Security?
Today, employees use a variety of smart tools to connect to small business networks, from smartphones to connected cash registers. Endpoint security can help business owners keep their networks safe by detecting and preventing a wide range of Internet threats.
By Mike Foreman, General Manager, SMB
How would I explain endpoint security?
How does Endpoint Security work?
What are the new threats to your business?
What are the risks for small businesses?
How does endpoint security help keep your business safe?
What is the difference between endpoint security and more traditional antivirus solutions?
The impact of endpoint security solutions on business
Firstly, picture all the computers your business uses. These computers are normally connected via a central server to form a network of machines that share data and software. This network of computers is protected by layers of security that surround the network acting as a protective shield.
However, in today’s mobile world where many people work flexibly, remotely and on the move they need access to the business network to share and input information, such as emails or updating information via software that the business uses.
Remote Aaccess is generally via smartphones, tablets, point of sale terminals, bar code readers or laptops, but it brings risks. By allowing such devices admission on to your secure network it introduces an opportunity for viruses or other types of malware to infiltrate beyond your traditional security protection.
So another form of IT security can be adopted called Endpoint Security. It gets As its name as suggests it is located at the gateway between the network and the device trying to logon to the secure protected network.
To explain it simply think of the security used to protect entry to your office building. This is usually a centrally managed operation that allows employees access by swiping a validated card or inputting a code, while visitors cannot enter until they are checkedhave signed in. Endpoint Security works in the same way. Software on your centrally maintained server requires the user to logon to the network to validate credentials before allowing access. There are different methods of control that can be adopted, such as using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) client, up-to-date anti-virus software, personal firewalls or certain approved operating systems.
Securing your business is like erecting a perimeter fence and then adopting different types of security protection to prevent breach of that boundary. Security experts refer to this as a layered approach that helps you protect against a variety of attacks.
Today's hackers are exceptionally keen on getting their hands on the data your business retains, such as customer emails and addresses, suppliers’ bank accounts and credit card details, telephone numbers, and sensitive commercial information. These all have money-making potential and so are attractive to hackers, who want to circumvent perimeter defences and target the data and applications at the heart of your business.
Their goal is to attack the systems and data that help you create and keep customers, manage and create intellectual property, and maintain a positive cash flow.
There’s a myth that hackers only attack big corporations. Why would they waste time with the little guys? True there are plenty of high profile big data breaches in big businesses like Adobe or The New York Times, but actually more than half of US small businesses have experienced a data breach. In the UK, the Government’s 2013 Information Security Breaches Survey records that 87% of small businesses suffered a data breach, an 11% increase on the year.
Often less well defended, small businesses can be a happy hunting ground for data thieves and the results can be catastrophic for small operations. Losing customers’ details often results in lost business. It can seriously damage your business’s reputation, causing loss cancellation of contracts, or legal sanctions and/or large fines.
A 2013 UK survey showed data theft cost UK companies millions of pounds with average legal costs of £30,000. A recent IBM global survey on data breach statistics shows how the costs of a compromise breakdown across six categories of reputational damage, lost productivity, lost revenue, forensics, technical support and compliance regulation.
Endpoint security protects the access points to your network preventing data thieves from accessing the sensitive data your business stores and uses. Using a two-step validation process that requires authentication through a VPN or security software corroboration helps reinforce security, as does accompanying business procedures and policies to control employee access to sensitive data.
Businesses can choose from a variety of different types of protection. As I was explaining before, security protection is based on layers that protect against sophisticated hackers. For basic protection, which keeps your businesses’ Windows severs up-and-running and keep online threats at bay, then why not go for AVG File Server Edition. It’s lightweight and won’t slow your business down with bulky, slow-loading software.
If you are looking for more layers of protection, including Endpoint Security, then try our best-selling AVG AntiVirus Business Edition, which features additional defensive features designed to protect critical business and customer data by securing PCs, laptops and file servers.
Add yet another layer of protection with AVG Internet Security Business Edition, our premium product for small businesses, and protect your email traffic to and from your business.
Being a successful small business is a challenge with fierce competition, tough regulations and an uncertain financial environment to contend with. However, to be successful we understand you will want to focus on growing and developing your business without worrying about its online security. By using reputable and proven endpoint security, your business can benefit from the flexible working demands of employees, improving working conditions, efficiency and productivity. Find out more in our Bring Your Own Device eBook.
Don’t miss out on these benefits, but make sure your endpoints are protected and not an open door for hackers to walk freely into your business network and steal sensitive, commercially important information and harm your business’s reputation.