Endpoint Security Is More Important Than Ever

Many employees around the world have spent a year forced to operate from home, and many will continue to do so after the pandemic has abated. Global Workplace Analytics, for example, predicts that 25%-30% of employees will still be working multiple days a week from home by the end of 2021.
 
If there is anything positive that can be taken from Covid-19, it is that remote working can be productive.
 
But there has been an inevitable downside of the mass adoption of remote working. Cyber criminals have realized that remote workers are no longer as well protected as on-premises office workers. According to research by YouGov, 54% of IT decision makers have seen a higher number of phishing attacks, and 45% saw evidence of printers being compromised as attack points. 

This article explores why endpoint security is more important now than ever to protect remote workers and IT professionals.

Blurred lines
 
A major problem is how the line is blurred between work and personal lives when working from home. According to YouGov research, 76% of office workers felt this blurring of their lives, 46% used their work laptop for personal activities, and 30% even let someone else use their work device - perhaps a child doing schoolwork from home. While the employee might be conscientious about avoiding phishing attacks, other family members won’t be, and all it takes is one lapse and a system could be compromised. You can’t put all the blame on employees working from home for this, though. Instead, it puts the onus on the device they are using itself.
 
Research by YouGov has shown that 91% of IT decision makers believe endpoint security is at least as important as network security.
 
Weak systems
 
Once a system used for work has been infected, it can be used to mount attacks on other employees within the company. The email contacts address book could be accessed and phishing emails sent from the infected system. Other employees will be far more susceptible if they think messages are coming from a legitimate source within the company, which could then mean the whole workforce becomes infected, enabling a mass ransomware attack. Printers could also be susceptible to internal attack once cyber-criminals have access to computers that provide remote access.
 
Anatomy of Endpoint Security
 
Many vendors offer endpoint protection platforms (EPPs) that combine different kinds of functionality, including a firewall, data, email and disk encryption (data at rest and in motion) as well as endpoint configuration and management (down to individual devices). Scanning incoming files for viruses and other malware (advanced antivirus) and endpoint threat protection are also key features. Many providers also offer endpoint detection and response (EDR, which may be broken out separately), threat forensics, data classification and loss prevention, insider threat protection, behavioral analysis, centralized administration and security policy enforcement.
 
A Complex Landscape
 
As the threat landscape has continued to get more complex, so have endpoint security products. One of the reasons vendors have taken a platform approach is so security organizations can have visibility across the different type of security tool types, unlike a collection of point solutions that weren't designed to work together.
 
Another benefit of EPPs is their ability to support the different types of endpoints as opposed to just supporting PCs, mobile or IoT/IIoT, for example. That way, if a threat appears via one device, the platform aggregates the threat information so it applies to all endpoints, not just the type that was attacked.
 
Similarly, though EPPs are available as a cloud or on-premises solution, a cloud solution enables the most up-to-date threat information to be shared across all of a vendors' customers. In fact, Gartner estimates that more than 95% of EPP purchases will be cloud-based by 2023.
 
Conclusion
 
There will be a lot more employees working from home post pandemic, and that has potential to be a positive change. Employees can more easily fit work and life together, without any noticeable drop in productivity. With the right computing safety precautions, one of the biggest downsides of remote working can be mitigated. That way, this brave new world of more flexible working can be a win-win for employer and employee alike.
 
Eileen Harrison is a technical writer for Lucky Assignments.
 
You Might Also Read:
 
Bad Cyber Security Behavior At Home Risks Being Taken Back To Work:
 
 
« Cyber Operations In Wartime
Japan’s New Cyber Security Strategy »

CyberSecurity Jobsite
Perimeter 81

Directory of Suppliers

MIRACL

MIRACL

MIRACL provides the world’s only single step Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) which can replace passwords on 100% of mobiles, desktops or even Smart TVs.

XYPRO Technology

XYPRO Technology

XYPRO is the market leader in HPE Non-Stop Security, Risk Management and Compliance.

Practice Labs

Practice Labs

Practice Labs is an IT competency hub, where live-lab environments give access to real equipment for hands-on practice of essential cybersecurity skills.

Perimeter 81 / How to Select the Right ZTNA Solution

Perimeter 81 / How to Select the Right ZTNA Solution

Gartner insights into How to Select the Right ZTNA offering. Download this FREE report for a limited time only.

LockLizard

LockLizard

Locklizard provides PDF DRM software that protects PDF documents from unauthorized access and misuse. Share and sell documents securely - prevent document leakage, sharing and piracy.

Cleo

Cleo

Cleo is a leader in secure information integration, enabling both ease and excellence in business data movement and orchestration.

Avanan

Avanan

Avanan is The Cloud Security Platform. Protect all your SaaS applications using tools from over 60 industry-leading vendors in just one click.

Perspective Risk

Perspective Risk

Perspective Risk provides penetration testing, security assessments, risk management & compliance solutions, InfoSec training and consultancy services.

Emerging Payments Association (EPA)

Emerging Payments Association (EPA)

The Emerging Payments Association (EPA) is a commercial membership association of payments industry influencers.

Atempo

Atempo

Atempo is a leading independent European-based software vendor with an established global presence providing solutions to protect, store, move and recover all mission-critical data.

CounterCraft

CounterCraft

The CounterCraft Cyber Deception Platform fits seamlessly into existing security strategies and delivers high-end deception for threat hunting and threat detection.

R2S Technologies

R2S Technologies

R2S can help you implement a cyber security framework to ensure your business is more resilient towards the growing threat of cyber crime. We provide Web and Mobile Application Security Assessment..

Elemendar

Elemendar

Elemendar Artificial Intelligence reads cyber threat reports written by humans and translates them into industry-standard, machine-readable and machine-actionable data.

SmartCyber

SmartCyber

SmartCyber is a company specializing in custom IT projects and Cybersecurity.

Securosys

Securosys

Securosys is a technology company dedicated to securing data and communications. We develop, produce, and distribute hardware, software and services that protect and verify data and their transmission

F1 Security

F1 Security

F1 Security provides a family of web security solutions including web application firewalls, web shell detection solutions, and web shell scanners.

NordLayer

NordLayer

NordLayer is an adaptive network access security solution for modern businesses — from the world’s most trusted cybersecurity brand, Nord Security. 

Prevasio

Prevasio

Prevasio is a next-gen Cloud Security Posture Management (CSPM) with a built-in Vulnerability and Anti-Malware Scan for Containers.

Raxis

Raxis

Raxis is a cybersecurity company that hacks into computer networks and physical structures to perform penetration tests, assessing corporate vulnerability to real-world threats.

Shield Capital

Shield Capital

Shield Capital helps founders build frontier solutions in cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, space & autonomy for commercial and government enterprises.

Bluefin Payment Systems

Bluefin Payment Systems

Bluefin is the recognized integrated payments leader in encryption and tokenization technologies that protect payments and sensitive data.