Dark Endpoints: How to Secure What You Can't See

Are you aware of all of your remote endpoints? When was your last inventory audit? Are you sure it’s up to date? If you were able to answer all of these questions confidently, good on you. If you’re like the majority of IT teams thought, you have dark endpoints. In today’s age of always-on global interconnectedness, the ability to keep up with the number and variety of devices accessing corporate networks is becoming a significant patching challenge.

According to a 2017 Ponemon study:

  • 75% of companies are not keeping up with patching
  • 63% of companies can’t monitor off network endpoints
  • 48% of companies are dissatisfied with their current endpoint solution
  • 21% of companies have no endpoint security solution
  • 61% of companies want automation as part of their endpoint security

Dark endpoints can take many forms, from IoT gadgets and machines to mobile devices. From a patching perspective, let’s look at dark endpoints from your server infrastructure and client network point of view.

The first step to ensure you are eliminating dark endpoints from your environment is to use a vulnerability management tool. These tools provide the ability to detect and identify endpoints in your infrastructure. They can even provide data about those endpoints. Unfortunately, that’s where they stop. They allow you to see what you have and tell you what it looks like but doing anything about it is still a manual process. That’s why you see the statistics above. Knowing what you need to do, and being able to do it efficiently, are two different things.

Cloud-Native Patch Automation

As the Ponemon study pointed out, three quarters of companies can’t keep up with patching. And nearly two thirds can’t manage remote endpoints. Even for those companies that have patching solutions, nearly half are happy with the results they’re getting.

Automated patching solutions are only as good as their ability to handle your entire infrastructure, not just you on premise devices. The ability to see, manage, and remediate remote endpoints is a necessity. New cloud native patching solutions, like Automox, provide continuous real time patch status for every server and workstation in your infrastructure and can apply patches with the push of a button.

Automox provides automated patch remediation, enabling you to take action and not just telling you what you need to do. And, you maintain control over when and how Automox applies the patches. You can set it and forget it so it works without human intervention, and notifies you of any failed patches. Or you can integrate into your existing patch workflow, using the Automox policy engine.

Ponemon also found that there is significant value in terms of cost savings and productivity gains through automation:

  • Almost 60% of the hours spent on endpoint security could be saved with automation
  • 68% of malware can be handled with automation and no human intervention
  • 615 weekly endpoint alerts - only 45% are credible - 42% of those investigated (19%)
  • $6 million is wasted annually to detect and contain unsecure endpoints
  • $2 million in productivity gains could be realized annually
  • $2.1 million in savings can be achieved by automating inefficient process

The risk posed by dark endpoints due to lack of visibility into remote servers and workstations, and an inability to easily and effectively patch them is significant. Most cyber attacks focus on the endpoint as the path of least resistance and the majority of breaches exploit known vulnerabilities with available patches. It’s time to close the door for good on this low-hanging fruit for cyber criminals.

About Automox

Facing growing threats and a rapidly expanding attack surface, understaffed and alert-fatigued organizations need more efficient ways to eliminate their exposure to vulnerabilities. Automox is a modern cyber hygiene platform that closes the aperture of attack by more than 80% with just half the effort of traditional solutions.

Cloud-native and globally available, Automox enforces OS & third-party patch management, security configurations, and custom scripting across Windows, Mac, and Linux from a single intuitive console. IT and SecOps can quickly gain control and share visibility of on-prem, remote and virtual endpoints without the need to deploy costly infrastructure.

Experience modern, cloud-native management today with a 15-day free trial of Automox and start recapturing more than half the time you're currently spending on managing your attack surface. Automox dramatically reduces corporate risk while raising operational efficiency to deliver best-in-class security outcomes, faster and with fewer resources.