Protect Your Windows Systems

By | August 29, 2006

With downtime costs reaching thousands of dollars per hour, an outage could be catastrophic to a midsize company.

Growing need for mobile computing – The proliferation of laptops and other mobile devices has certainly been a boon for workforce productivity. But according to a recent global survey of 240 company executives by the Economist Intelligence Unit and sponsored by Symantec, only 9% of companies have incorporated a comprehensive security architecture designed to include mobile device access. In addition, these mobile devices typically carry sensitive information that could negatively impact a business should that information be lost through a system failure.

Ongoing client management needs – Midsize organizations are under increasing pressure to meet fundamental business needs to keep end point devices up and running, regardless of what could potentially occur, including security vulnerabilities, system failures, human errors, as well as necessary planned maintenance. That pressure is exacerbated when one considers the limited IT resources that are available and factors in the complexity of delivering on service-level agreements to remote offices and mobile users.

Protecting the Windows environment

To truly protect the Windows environment, it is necessary to look at the IT infrastructure holistically to ensure that all data, systems, and application processes are aligned to support the end goal: keeping the business up and running while ensuring the security and integrity of the information that the business and its customers depend on.

Therefore, it should be the goal of every midsize organization to identify and implement best-in-class solutions for keeping data, systems, and applications secure and highly available. Furthermore, the solutions should be capable of handling the needs of a large enterprise, but also affordable and easy enough for a midsize organization to implement.

Secure and protect data

Typically, midsize organizations spend their time reacting to what has occurred as opposed to anticipating future threats and breaches. Gartner reports that midsize businesses are weak in the area of security monitoring and often aren´t even aware that they have been breached.

Midsize organizations should instead focus on solutions that address the challenge of providing anticipatory protection against known, unknown, internal, and external threats while still allowing necessary information access throughout attacks and remediation. While a majority of organizations may immediately think of servers as the focal point for security, desktops and mobile devices should not be overlooked. In fact, a recent Gartner survey of midsize organizations found that nearly 30 percent of respondents aren´t using personal firewalls on their laptops, and nearly 20 percent aren´t using anti-spyware. Moreover, end users tend to treat these mobile systems as their own personal devices, taking them home and using them for various extracurricular activities. Not surprisingly, Gartner found that 35% of malware infections resulted from end-point intrusions while the system was off the managed network.

That´s why organizations need to set and enforce appropriate IT policies, as well as identify and evaluate solutions that can provide multi-layered security capable of assessing threats, monitoring controls, shielding individual applications, and protecting desktops and mobile systems.

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