As network infrastructure moves to the cloud, so have security services. With 70% of IT professionals already using cloud-based security services, it is estimated that this segment will be worth $9 billion by 2020. Increased diligence for security threats, especially among small and midsize businesses who are not able to afford expensive on-premise security solutions but want to protect their business from attack, has spurred this growth.
Patch management is a critical aspect of network security. Traditional patching solutions are on-premise. They sit behind the corporate firewall and require employees to be at the office or connected through the company’s VPN when working remotely. On premise solutions also require an additional server which needs to be maintained.
There are a number of challenges with on premise patching services. As noted above, hybrid and cloud based infrastructures exist outside the firewall. Employees are also accessing the company network remotely more often. So while on-premise solutions may be considered safe, if they’re not patching your entire network, they are actually doing you more harm than good.
Cloud Patch Management
The answer to outdated on-premise patching solutions is cloud based patch management. Today’s cloud based solutions offer significant advantages over legacy on-premise solutions. They are able to patch your entire infrastructure anywhere in the world. If an endpoint is connected to the internet, it can be patched. Additionally, they are self healing, meaning they update on their own without the need for additional maintenance from IT.
Cloud-based patching solutions also have the ability to regularly add supported operating systems and 3rd party applications without the end-user needing to perform updates. Current patch status and real time reporting can be accessed from anywhere on a single dashboard, providing ongoing visibility of infrastructure security.
Despite these benefits, some businesses may be hesitant to utilize cloud-based services for their patching and security needs due to misconceptions about the safety of cloud services. Many people still believe cloud services are less secure than behind the firewall on-premise solutions.
This is not the case. Cloud providers has increased their own security protocols, and new attacks are able to evade antivirus and other on premise security perimeters. The cloud is safe and perhaps safer than on-premise solutions. A recent survey found 78% of IT professionals with strong confidence that the cloud is secure. Another report found that users of on-premises environments suffered an average of 61.4 attacks, while those using cloud providers had only 27.8 attacks.
Automox’s cloud-based patching solutions was designed with security in mind at every step, from the software development process to the agent’s interaction with each endpoint. Automox uses clustered services to ensure high availability, and all services are run on multiple load-balanced servers, so one server failure does not compromise the system. Strict access policies are implemented so that Automox employees only have access to the areas they need to provide support, and production servers are separated from staging and development environments.
Automox’s lightweight agent is installed on endpoints to monitor and apply patches regularly. This cloud-based agent requires some system access in order to effectively perform patching duties, however it also limits unnecessary access. The agent is not capable of accessing data files, and is designed to be less invasive than other tools. All data exchange with the Automox policy engine takes place over TLS encrypted channels.
With these features in place, Automox’s cloud-based patching solution is safe to use while also improving your infrastructure’s overall security. Regularly patching known vulnerabilities is the best way to protect your infrastructure from attack. Automox patches Windows, Mac, Linux, and 3rd party software from a single dashboard. Automox’s flexible patching policies also allow patches to be tested and approved before deployment, reducing the chance of conflicts arising in production. You finally have your patch management single source of truth.
To learn more about using Automox as your patching system of record, you can visit us online. Or if you’re more hands on, sign up for our free 15 day trial. No credit card required, no endpoint limit, and full platform access.