The following is excerpted from "Building and Enforcing an Endpoint Security Strategy," a new report posted this week on Dark Reading's Endpoint Security Tech Center.]
Very few network devices can match endpoint devices in terms of how much they vary, how often they change, and how wide a net they cast when bringing risk into the organization.
From laptops to tablets to iPhones and Android devices, an increasing number and variety of endpoints are finding their way into users' hands. And with the widening use of cloud computing, data is accessible from anywhere and from any device.
All of this creates a very challenging scenario for security experts looking to lock down the devices that are used to access corporate networks and data. It's always difficult to find just the right security balance between user freedom and the safety of corporate assets, but the variability of endpoints -- especially with the rise in the BYOD, or bring-your-own-device model -- makes things especially difficult.
When developing or assessing an endpoint security plan, it's important to first examine the threats to endpoints.
The threat landscape has changed in a major way during the last few years. This is evident when looking at a comparison of the perceived security risks from 2010 to 2012: Mobile security concerns have skyrocketed, from 9% to 73%, in just two years, according to the Ponemon Institute's 2013 State of the Endpoint report.
Mobile malware discoveries increased 163% from 2011 to 2012, according to NQ Mobile research, with the majority targeting Android devices. The mobile landscape is also plagued with SMS phishing schemes, in which attackers send text messages with the intent of tricking users into either installing a program or giving up credentials.
Concerns over cloud computing have also seen an increase, from 18% to 43% in just one year, according to the Ponemon research.
For a closer look at the threats posed to the enterprise endpoint -- as well as strategies for handling administration, provisioning, access control, malware protection, and other endpoint security tasks -- download the free report.
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