Category: Endpoint Security

The Importance of Endpoint Resilience at RSA Conference 2020

Will you be one of the 45,000 people who are expected to attend RSA Conference 2020 in San Francisco next week? Like the topic of cybersecurity in general, the industry’s largest conference continues to increase in relevance as hackers evolve their tactics and organizations invest more in numerous security approaches to stop them.
Around the world, Absolute has been busy preparing for the big event – from executive leadership to customer success, product management to engineering, our entire team has a very full RSA schedule. This is partly because our message of endpoint resilience is now more critical than ever before.
To thwart attackers, organizations continue to layer on security controls. Despite astronomical investments being made however, research shows 100 percent of endpoint controls eventually fail and more than one in three endpoints are unprotected at any given time. Organizations need complete visibility and real-time insights in order to pinpoint unprotected or ‘dark endpoints,’ identify what’s broken and where gaps exist, as well as respond and take action quickly. Absolute mitigates this universal law of security decay and empowers organizations to build an enterprise security approach that is intelligent, adaptive and self-healing. This is endpoint resilience and it will be front and center at RSA Conference.
Absolute Monitoring Internet Activity in the SOC
One of the places you’ll find Absolute at RSA is in the Security Operations Center (SOC). Using our endpoint resilience solution, our team will be onsite protecting RSA attendees by monitoring internet activity in real-time at the Moscone Center. Be sure to stop by, say hi, and see how it works.
CEO, Christy Wyatt Speaks About 5G
Huawei’s potential domination of 5G markets brings with it significant economic and national security risks. Concerns of unfair trade practices and compromise of 5G networks by China are intertwined and these two problems need to be treated independently: deter unfair trade practices, but also devise smart industrial policies to encourage 5G and national security review of foreign 5G equipment. Our CEO Christy Wyatt will moderate a panel of experts as they discuss #5G and the need for a new approach to looking at securing the critical capabilities that impact us as a nation on Feb. 25. Register for the event here.
The Resilience Happy Hour
Mark your calendars for our Absolute Resilience Happy Hour February 25 from 5:30 – 7:30 PM at Hotel Zetta. Come rest those conference weary feet over a drink and some appetizers with our team. RSVP today.
Find a Green Umbrella!
From London to Austin, Vancouver to San Francisco, Absolute endpoint resilience has you covered with the visibility and control you need over your endpoints. Meet us at RSA by finding one of our green umbrellas and find out how we are dedicated to providing the best endpoit resilience platform around the world.
From all of us at Absolute, safe travels to SFO. We look forward to seeing you!

Can AI and ML Bridge the Cybersecurity Skills Gap?

It is estimated there will be more than 3.5 million vacant cybersecurity jobs by 2021. As companies face an ever expanding threat landscape and pressure to be able to detect and mitigate threats faster, bridging this skill gap is critical.
Without humans to fill the void, organizations have been turning to the potential of using artificial intelligence (AI) or, more aptly, machine learning (ML) to scale out the capabilities of their existing, limited teams.
It’s not that we don’t have plenty of people working hard on solving cybersecurity problems, but that they need leverage and magnification, and machines offer that potential.
Machines deliver on speed and scale 
Machine learning has the ability to conduct the data analytics that humans find challenging or time-consuming when dealing with massive volumes of data. When properly trained, it is able to find patterns and identify the signals that matter when it comes to threat detection and recognizing anomalies. Machines can do this faster than humans, and in a world where cybercriminals also use AI and ML, speed and scale are everything.
If we take the behaviors of cybersecurity professionals and the data they’ve acted upon in the past, and train a machine using machine learning to identify those patterns and behaviors, and put them together, we can build something very powerful. This doesn’t even require full-fledged AI;  it merely requires machine learning and in fact, in most cases it probably just requires a little bit of statistics. But by doing that, we get to magnify the capabilities of that core set of people we do have, to help fill that skills gap.
We humans don’t know which signals matter until we are able to detect patterns by analyzing large volumes of data. This takes time. Machines can achieve this far faster, giving cyber security teams the advantage of speed. With Absolute, we have collected more than a petabyte of data. With such a massive volume of data, we have the wherewithal to sift through that and look for the signals. Most of this will come from software and hardware inventories, the signals about load on the system, behavior of users, finding what’s a pattern and what’s an outlier.
Using Absolute to tighten endpoint security
Organizations use Absolute as part of their endpoint security posture. Absolute Persistence is installed in the BIOS at the manufacturer and cannot be uninstalled by a user even if they uninstall the operating system. Absolute Resilience provides complete visibility into the endpoint, giving organizations details on device usage, location, which apps are installed, and the ability to freeze and wipe data if a device is compromised or lost.
A big struggle for a lot of organizations is that they’ve bought various solutions, they lay it on and have a dozen different agents installed on the endpoint. But each of these controls get deconfigured and deinstalled, and often you don’t know what you don’t know. Having a single source of truth with the persistence that it will always be able to draw the data from the endpoint no matter what the user does, that is what Absolute does to give organizations to determine what value they are getting from these tools and to improve their security posture.
Learn how Absolute Resilience can secure your endpoints and help you bridge the cybersecurity skills gap.
 
 
 

Strengthening Device Management and Endpoint Security Just Got Easier with Absolute Power of Resilience

With the increasing number and types of endpoint devices worldwide, establishing a tight knit security strategy to protect them, your users, and your data is now more critical than ever. A major cause for heartburn among IT and Security Operations teams is the consistent security and non-compliance failures occurring at the application layer.
This week, we announced that the power of Absolute’s Resilience solution and patented Absolute® Persistence™ technology now extends to more than 30 critical security applications – including, most recently, VMware® Carbon Black and Workspace OneTM as well as Crowdstrike® Falcon.
Failures at the Application Level
Organizations have long invested in Device Management, Encryption, VPN, Data Protection and other Endpoint Security tools to manage and secure devices within their fleet, protect sensitive data and maintain user productivity. The Absolute 2019 Endpoint Security Trends Report shows there are an average of 10 security agents deployed on each device at any particular point in time. A majority of these agents are easily tampered with or disabled negligently, causing multiple failures. On average, 13 percent of endpoints require at least one repair event of their AV tool every 30 days. Statistics are even more concerning for Encryption tools; 42 percent of endpoints have encryption failures at any given point in time.
Apart from inadvertent user behavior, application health is also affected by devices being reimaged, corrupted registry files, potential malware intrusions as well as the different agents essentially colliding with each other and reducing effectiveness. A majority of security events – 70 percent to be precise – originate at the endpoint.
Now more than ever, it is critical to ensure that the agents organizations invest in to maintain endpoint compliance and protect their environments remain healthy at all times.
Persisting at the Firmware Level
Most security tools in the market today operate at the operating system layer and so can be tampered with or disabled. The only way to truly secure your applications is to go to the firmware of a device to maintain connectivity and visibility across multiple security data points. Absolute Application Persistence is embedded in the firmware of close to 1 billion devices and actively monitors and remediates the health of the most-used security applications in the market today. This digital tether in the firmware ensures that Absolute’s OS agent and the agents of other security tools remain healthy and tamper proof to maintain compliance of the device and fleet overall.
AI based Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR) tools such as Carbon Black and Crowdstrike detect malware, identify unusual activity occurring on the device, and provide remediation guidance. Unified Endpoint Management (UEM) tools such as Workspace One manage devices as well as enhance end user experience through the deploying of applications, email, Wi-Fi, security settings and the provisioning of corporate resources as required.
Through automation, Application Persistence now ensures the policies and settings set through the three applications remain active to protect the device fleet from the ever-increasing list of external threats.
For more information about Absolute’s patented Persistence technology, see a complete list of the vendors and applications that make up the Absolute Resilience ecosystem. To see how Absolute’s firmware-embedded, self-healing technology ensures Greenville Health has continuous visibility and automated remediation for applications across 14,000 devices, download the case study.

New Year, New Cybersecurity Goals

This article originally appeared on the VMWare blog.
While the cybersecurity landscape may look daunting as the new year progresses, organizations should focus on building the proper strategies for protecting our valuable data and mitigating the endpoint security risks that 2020 promises to bring. This means taking a critical look at the past 12 months, and identifying the changes a security team can make now, that will be most impactful in the 12 months to follow.
Let’s explore some important enterprise security goals for an organization to consider, as 2020 advances.
Measuring Success within the New Year
One of the big buzz words of 2019 was “Zero Trust” – with the thought that the end user should have as little access to the device they are working on as necessary. We as an industry need to start measuring and scoring the trustworthiness of the products that we install in our environments. Exactly how do these products perform in the real world and not just in a lab? How do we know from day one that we can trust a product to perform in production? It is easy enough to allow security technology to win through traditional commerce, but truly successful products will win because customers decide to invest in renewals, and the poorly performing products will die. I expect that in 2020, we will start looking at the trustworthiness of applications and de-emphasize the focus on being impressed by marketing costs.
Calling a Time-out on Security Spending
When discussing the importance of a time-out on security spending, the following questions are important to consider: “Am I utilizing my security dollars efficiently,” and “How do I ensure that my organization is resilient based on the acquisition of new security?”
Companies have stuck to the same old playbook for years now, and it has one directive: buy more products. This isn’t going to result in the protection that enterprises require to combat hackers. As the new year approaches, businesses need to ensure that what they are already spending money on and deploying in the enterprise is actually working and protecting the environment. Today, organizations can expect to be compromised, but their ability to bounce back from such an attack will matter most to the company, its customers and partners.
This resiliency will also affect how the role of the CIO and CISO will develop within the next few years. CIOs are going to have to prove exactly how existing products are living up to their full potential. If they can’t show how current products will prevent and repair damage due to a cyberattack, then future investments will become even more scrutinized. As a result, we’re going to witness the introduction of protection level agreements guaranteeing that the strategies implemented will protect against certain severity levels of a cyber attack. With this in mind, it will become essential that CIOs and CISOs put a hold on any security spending, and take the time to reevaluate their security landscape to ensure the products they currently use are actually worth the investment.
Overcoming Vulnerabilities within the Education Industry
The most significant challenge for the education industry will rely on the identification and attraction of security professionals into the K-12 field. Budget constraints and advancement opportunities within the education sector for security specialists are generally not a great combination for attracting talented security professionals. Budget constraints may lead to the industry purchasing products that are tailored specifically to education use cases, but fail to follow secure development processes. This causes additional problems for the IT professional in the education system.
With this in mind, the education industry will also need to invest in personal development as 2020 continues. The industry as a whole is grossly under investing in its employees, and its IT department is no exception. Training courses must become a priority, not only to ensure all employees are keeping cybersecurity top of mind, but to help promote IT careers in the education sector. Without this focus, key IT players will soon discover better opportunities within another industry.
Striking a Balance Between Patient Care and Cybersecurity
In 2020, it’s going to be important for the healthcare industry to focus on building significant trust among healthcare professionals and IT security/privacy best practices. The balance of a patient’s life, accessing data quickly but accurately, and privacy concerns can be very conflicting, which puts cybersecurity on the backburner. In the new year, healthcare IT will need to provide greater and more robust security and privacy practices within their environments and better identify who requires certain privileges and access to patient data and systems.
It will also be important for the healthcare industry to better understand their environment and validate that their existing purchases are performing as expected – allowing better budget spend moving forward. Once this foundation is established, there is an opportunity for the industry to build on it, using tools that have already proved their worth and ensure a more seamless experience for the patient.
For more on the state of endpoint security, download the Endpoint Security Trends Report. 

Absolute is a Top 10 Cybersecurity Company to Watch For Second Consecutive Year

Absolute has again been recognized by Forbes Magazine as a Top 10 Cybersecurity Company to Watch in 2020. Written by Louis Columbus, this is the second consecutive year Absolute has made the top spot.
As worldwide spending on information security and risk management systems continues to grow and cybersecurity professionals are increasingly overwhelmed, organizations have an urgent need to improve endpoint security and resilience. Here’s an excerpt:
Absolute serves as the industry benchmark for endpoint resilience, visibility and control. Embedded in over a half-billion devices, the company enables more than 12,000 customers with self-healing endpoint security, always-connected visibility into their devices, data, users, and applications – whether endpoints are on or off the corporate network – and the ultimate level of control and confidence required for the modern enterprise.
Organizations need complete visibility and real-time insights in order to pinpoint the dark endpoints, identify what’s broken and where gaps exist, as well as respond and take action quickly. Absolute mitigates this universal law of security decay and empowers organizations to build an enterprise security approach that is intelligent, adaptive and self-healing. Rather than perpetuating a false sense of security, Absolute provides a single source of truth and the diamond image of resilience for endpoints.
Rising Complexity
To thwart attackers, organizations today often layer on many security controls. Gartner estimates that more than $174B will be spent on security by 2022 and of that, $50B will be dedicated to protecting the endpoint. The Absolute Endpoint Security Trends Report finds that in spite of the astronomical investments being made, 100 percent of endpoint controls eventually fail and more than one in three endpoints are unprotected at any given time.
All of this has IT and security administrators grappling with increasing complexity and risk levels, while also facing mounting pressure to ensure endpoint controls maintain integrity, availability and functionality at all times, and deliver their intended value.
Clear Line of Sight
Rather than wondering if your endpoints are safe, organizations need a clear line of sight into every device, at all times. Fortifying your security posture with the power of Absolute Persistence means a persistent, self-healing connection to all devices, whether they are on the network or not. This is true endpoint resilience and the foundation of improved security.
For more on how Absolute fortifies your security with endpoint resilience and provides a single source of truth into whether or not your existing security controls are working as intended, read what our customers have to say.

Apria Healthcare Sees and Secures 8,000 Devices with Absolute

Healthcare technology — which includes everything from medical staff tablets to patient monitoring devices and even prosthetics — is increasingly reliant on an interconnected network. This interconnectedness enables improved patient care, but it also opens the door for added risk. As cyber crime skyrockets across the healthcare industry, one of the nation’s leading home respiratory services and medical equipment providers, Apria Healthcare, recognized the risks early on and implemented Absolute to better secure patient data.
Apria operates more than 300 locations and provides service to 1.8 million patients annually with in-home care and 24/7 clinical services. In order to support home-healthcare — by far the fastest growing healthcare sector due to its potential for improved care at a reduced cost — Apria employees rely heavily on more than 8,000 devices.
Read: Why Data Privacy in Healthcare Matters
Unbreakable Visibility & Control
To ensure the highest levels of security, protect private and corporate information, and ensure HIPAA compliance, Apria needed a way to track their endpoint devices. They wanted a solution that would deliver zero-touch IT asset management, provide self-healing endpoint security, and employ always-on data visibility and protection. They needed intelligence on every device, with the ability to control every endpoint whether it was on or off their corporate network.
With Absolute Persistence®  already installed in the BIOS of their endpoint devices, Apria found unbreakable endpoint visibility and control by simply turning Persistence on. As a result, they now have a reliable, two-way connection to each device and can remotely monitor the status of their devices to avoid a healthcare data breach. They gained critical asset intelligence they could not find with any other security provider.
“Persistence [located] in the BIOS was the number one item that I think really sets Absolute apart from other companies touting that they can do asset tracking better,” said Janet Hunt, Senior Director, IT User Support, at Apria Healthcare. “They really can’t, they don’t have that piece – that persistent piece is so important to me. I am always looking for opportunity and different technologies as they come up, and I haven’t found anything that’s as good as Absolute… nothing can compare.”
With Persistence activated on every device, Apria Healthcare is assured that no matter what happens to a device – whether it is lost, stolen, or breached – no one can turn that Persistence off. The device will continue to report back to Apria, who then has the power to wipe a device clean or shut it down even if the user installs a new OS.
Absolute also provides dashboard status on all devices that updates every 15 minutes. With a complete history of the device, security managers can demonstrate encryption, geolocation, usage, and device history. Absolute provides unprecedented asset intelligence, giving healthcare organizations a crystal-clear understanding of the value every asset is delivering to inform security and purchase decisions.
“If Absolute disappeared, I would retire because I would have no idea where anything was,” said Hunt. “That was the greatest thing about bringing Absolute in: I know where a device is.”
To find out how the Apria Healthcare uses Absolute to secure patient information, gain visibility into device location and activity and improve access to patient care in the field, check out the case study or read up on Absolute healthcare solutions.
 

What Do the City of Houston, Government of Canada, Eir, and Raley’s Supermarkets Have in Common?

This article was originally published in IT Pro Portal.
A Texas city, the Canadian Northwest Territories government, an Irish telecom provider, and a California supermarket chain. What ties them together? They were all impacted by headline-making data breaches involving the theft of data from an endpoint device.
Unfortunately, the string of incidents is not surprising given that 70 per cent of data breaches today originate on the endpoint and 15 per cent of them are caused by lost or missing devices. Not to mention major U.S. metros are still on alert as the “smash-and-grab” crime trend continues with cities like San Francisco reporting about 73 car break-ins per day in August alone, with laptops on the list of most in-demand and easy-to-snatch items.
It’s estimated that by 2020, the global spend on IT security is predicted to total a staggering $128 billion. But the physical thefts of laptop devices from office places, cars or otherwise, are still causing pain in the form of data leakage, exposure and regulatory issues. There are valuable lessons to be learned here, especially when endpoint breaches can be devastating to an organisation in terms of fines, reputational damage, lawsuits, and irreparable damage to customer trust.
To help organisations strengthen their endpoint security postures, we took a lens to several notable incidents that prove how vulnerable our endpoints continue to be and outlined our key takeaways:

Irish telecom company, Eir leaks data of 37,000 customers: The data of 37,000 customers of Ireland’s largest telecom provider, Eir, was compromised when an unencrypted device was stolen from outside an office building. The laptop contained personally identifiable information (PII) including names, email addresses, phone numbers, and Eir account numbers. It had been decrypted by a faulty security update the previous working day. The company was forced to report the incident to the police as well as the Data Protection Commissioner.
Stolen laptop exposes data of 10,000 Raley’s customers: Raley’s experienced a data breach affecting 10,000 pharmacy customers. The data included sensitive patient information as well as identification numbers and prescription drug records. Raley’s could not confirm whether the data had been accessed or misused, nor could they confirm if encryption was in place.
Stolen laptop compromises Houston’s health plan: A laptop stolen from an employee’s car may have contained protected health information (PHI) records of the city’s staff, including names, addresses, dates of birth, social security numbers, and medical information. The organisation couldn’t tell if data was accessed or if encryption was in place, so they had no choice but to treat the incident as a data breach.
Stolen laptop exposes health data of 80 per cent of N.W.T. Residents: A laptop was stolen from a locked vehicle in Ottawa, Ontario containing PHI of 33,661 residents of Canada’s Northwest Territories. The data included names of patients’ names, their birth dates, home communities, healthcare numbers, and, in some cases, medical conditions. The stolen laptop was a new device so the encryption process either failed or was missed.

Lessons learned
These examples show how easy an unnecessary breach can occur. But when one laptop is stolen every 53 seconds, according to Gartner, and the average total cost of a data breach is $3.92 million, it is wise to ensure organisations have measures in place to prevent putting their data at risk. Here are the top three takeaways we can apply to endpoint security strategy, as risks continue to heighten in today’s IT landscape:

Lack of visibility is a common denominator. There is a common thread across all of these cases: a lack of endpoint visibility and an inability to prove that data protection technology was in place and functioning at the time the device went missing. In addition, there was no way to know if data was accessed post incident and certainly no way to ensure the device was remotely disabled and all personal data deleted. When it comes to endpoint data protection, you’ve likely already purchased the necessary security tools, namely device encryption. The Raley’s case, though, is a reminder that there are unencrypted devices out there and attackers know it. Organisations must have the visibility to know that their controls are, in fact, turned on and working. There’s massive risk associated with not knowing the answer.

The efficacy of endpoint security tools diminishes significantly over time. Despite the increase in IT security spending, endpoint attacks are still common. Recent research shows investment in security is wasted as endpoint controls predictably decay. The reasons vary, from controls being disabled by users to underlying services becoming disabled or broken and/or communication channels inside of the operating system (OS) breaking or experiencing disruption in some way. There is no scarcity of tools and controls. The problem is that these things are not naturally resilient. If you’ve got multiple agents on the device, beware that complexity is in itself a vulnerability and understand that less may, in fact, be more. IT, security, and risk professionals are wise to focus on streamlining and simplifying when it comes to securing their organisations’ data.

Endpoint security is endpoint resilience. It may be counter intuitive, but endpoint controls are fragile. Compromise happens not because there are no guards, but often because controls compete for resources and some thrive while others fail, which defeats the goal of safeguarding data, systems and assets.

It’s important to understand that security tools conflict and collide, and that where there is friction there is decay. We must also acknowledge that these tools must be deliberately controlled in order to improve endpoint resilience.
Back to the basics
Building endpoint resiliency and improving endpoint security requires us to get back to the basics of cybersecurity and hone in on the most critical elements for ensuring data protection at scale: people, process, and technology. It is only then that organisations can start to buck the trend of spending more of their IT budget on endpoint security while still seeing endpoint data breaches grow in frequency and severity.

Tracking & Recovering Missing Devices After the Holidays

If you’re an IT professional in education, you know that missing and stolen devices are an unfortunate reality of the holidays. Students, faculty and staff become more pre-occupied with merrymaking than keeping devices safe. Not only is the holiday season prime time for thieves to stock up on valuable electronics left in airports, vehicles and cafes, but it’s also common for students and staff to misplace school-owned devices at home or while traveling. With mid-year inventories coming up, it’s inevitable that there will be plenty of missing and stolen devices.
Greater Visibility and Control
In December, Absolute introduced a new Missing Devices feature whereby Absolute customers can now track, locate, and recover missing devices. Customers now have the capability to easily understand where their devices are, who’s using them, and how to locate them — information previously only available to law enforcement. Customers can now flag devices as missing, track them within a single report, and receive an automatic alert the next time they connect to the internet. This empowers users to either self-locate a missing device and contact the student or faculty member directly, or verify that the device has been stolen so that they can file a Theft Report, provided that they are willing to prosecute and have reported the incident to law enforcement.
Absolute’s team of reliable Investigators, with a total of 115 years of combined law enforcement experience, will then immediately begin an investigation, assist the police, and facilitate the safe return of the stolen device. Absolute Resilience for Education customers may also be eligible for a Service Guarantee; a warranty to back our proven ability to recover stolen devices, provided that the police report is uploaded within 30 days of the customer submitting the theft report and other conditions are met.
This feature represents a new degree of visibility and control for our customers. At a time where technology investment safeguards have never been more critical, Absolute is leading the way in supporting educators demonstrate ROI.
To learn more about how to track and recover missing devices with Absolute, watch this webinar.

Achieving Enterprise Resiliency Requires A Cyber-Committed Board

This article was originally published in Forbes. 
Today, 84% of the total value of the Fortune 500 is comprised of intangible assets. This means that for most major businesses, the value of digital assets, data and intellectual property (IP) is five times greater than that of physical assets. And the core DNA of their businesses, the thing that most needs protecting, lives in the virtual.
As those assets increasingly come under attack due to cyber hacking, fraud or negligence, companies find themselves scrambling to deploy more and more security controls — at a time when the forecasted worldwide security spend is expected to spike to nearly $134 billion in 2022. This trend represents an astronomical investment in defending against the rapidly escalating risk, but has yet to yield a deceleration of cyberattacks.
Against this landscape, the role of the board also continues to evolve — with an increasing expectation that board members bring a basic level of cyber competence to their roles. October was National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, so it seemed an appropriate time to share a few guiding principles that I believe are central to building and fostering cyber awareness, engagement and commitment at the board level.
Recognize cyber risk as a business risk
Cyber risk is not an elusive, cryptic puzzle that cannot be clearly measured and articulated. The same thinking that we apply to corporate governance and managing financial, operational or legal risk can and should be applied to cyber risk. From setting the vision and establishing a framework for success to ensuring investment and overseeing auditing controls, these are the things that boards need to be doing in partnership with management — especially from early on in the operation.
Let’s use financial risk as an analogy. Not all board members are deemed financial experts, but they have competency in understanding the company’s financials, which controls are in place, which additional controls are needed and who is auditing the testing of these controls. The same framework should be applied to cyber risk. Where is the real value in the company, and what are the real risks to those assets? These two questions should be your starting point. From there, all of the same questions apply: Which controls are in place? Which additional controls are needed? How are they being tested, and how do we map against the industry? Will cyber risk be a topic across the board, within specific audit meetings, or within some other committee?
Know how to define ‘enough’
Asking the right question, “Are we doing enough?” is critical. But sound cyber competence means also having the ability to answer the question. It requires the ability to define “enough” in the context of that particular business and the appetite for risk, as well as how to know if “enough” is really working. What makes this especially tricky is that there is no one-size-fits-all formula for measuring risk. It’s possible for an organization to spend an infinite amount on cyber protection and never achieve perfection. And this question can quickly start to feel like an unanswerable one.
I know this from my own personal experience. During my time at Citigroup, I had the opportunity to look deeply at online financial fraud. Similar to cyber mitigation, where you know you will never get to zero, it is important to understand what your level of risk tolerance actually is to help determine what success looks like. Given the nature and scope of your business, what is regrettable versus unacceptable? For example, a board would view employees having personal content on enterprise devices very differently from a nation-state attack or misused consumer data.
Boards should be having open discussions with management to determine where the lines need to be drawn, what is most important, what is achievable and in what investment envelope.
Make resiliency the end goal
Resiliency, by definition, is the ability to bounce back. Achieving enterprise resiliency requires not just the ability to mitigate cyber risk, but also to respond, recover and heal quickly from both real as well as perceived damage.
When the call comes that you’ve been compromised, it cannot be the first time you’re having a conversation about how to respond. Talking through things like escalations, communications, disclosures and communication to customers, partners and regulators, is a worthy exercise for the board and management to undertake together. What are the thresholds? How and when will it be communicated to the board? What are the board’s responsibilities in these scenarios? This is another area where external facilitators can play a helpful role.
As we move forward, enterprise resiliency will increasingly become core to a company’s agility in a crisis. Boards will continue to use acute cyber awareness to drive fundamental shifts in how organizations think about cyber risk and bring forward new ways to build successful, resilient enterprise security strategies.
For more on how to achieve enterprise resiliency with Absolute, visit Absolute.com.

5 Steps to Securing Your School’s Devices Over the Holiday Break

Much to the delight of students, faculty and administrators everywhere, holiday break is almost here! But they aren’t the only ones eagerly anticipating end of semester school closings: criminals are also waiting for campus shutdowns so they can take advantage of the valuable technology now commonplace in schools, from K-12 to colleges and universities.
Before taking off for the semester break, follow these easy steps to ensure your school’s devices and students are safe:

Remind users of safe behavior. Students, faculty and staff that take devices with them should be reminded (more than once) not to leave their individual or school-owned laptops or tablets in cars or other places where they can be easily spotted by crooks looking for an easy score. If someone does fall victim to theft or loses a device during the break, be sure to make available clear direction for course of action you expect. Who do they notify and how?
Update device software. Cyber criminals are equally as troublesome this time of year, with holiday phishing emails putting school networks at grave risk for cyberattack. Use the holiday downtime to push updates to device software and patch known vulnerabilities. If this sounds like an overwhelming task, consider relying on automation for help.
Track your devices. If a device does go rogue, you have a very vulnerable attack vector. Key to mitigating this risk is uncompromised visibility and control over the device, whether it’s on or off the network. Being able to quickly locate a missing or stolen device means you can remotely shut down unwanted network access and, if all goes well with law enforcement’s help, even retrieve stolen devices.
Store devices in locked cabinets and/or alarmed areas. It sounds obvious but you’d be surprised how many laptops, tablets, virtual reality headsets, digital cameras and other small-sized tech gadgets can be left lying around. This type of tech is in high demand and easy to swipe so make it harder for the thieves and keep everything under lock and key.
Don’t leave technology in plain sight. While a determined thief will break in regardless, you can prevent your school becoming victimized by someone who otherwise may not have considered pilfering your school’s tech. Remove from view or cover any larger equipment like desktop computers, printers, interactive whiteboards, and other tech that will be left behind.

Technology in our schools enable modern learning paths and brings a new level of innovation to the classroom. But it must be protected. You can safeguard your investment – not to mention your students, teachers and administration along with their  data – with the Absolute platform. In the event of loss or theft, you can remotely detect and remediate devices to prevent potential security issues and ensure compliance.
To learn how Klein Independent School District in Klein, Texas tracks, manages, repairs and recovers devices in their 1:1 computing program, download the case study.

Loading

Categories