Why should small to medium sized businesses (SMBs) emphasize their endpoint security needs? How do the critical capabilities of endpoint security change as your business scales? Why do large enterprises still need endpoint security, and what are those endpoint security needs?
Endpoint security occupies an interesting place in the cybersecurity discourse. Everyone agrees that it remains a vital tool in repelling cybersecurity threats like ransomware. Yet at the same time, what capabilities receive attention as “critical” and which ones become “legacy” often confuses the layperson. Questions remain as to what to consider in selecting a solution.
For example, is antimalware still important? On the one hand, no; other endpoint security capabilities like EDR have taken priority in response to the evolving threat landscape. On the other hand, yes; ransomware continues to prove a serious, potentially disruptive security event.
There isn’t a clear answer. Or so it seems. Actually, the problem may stem from trying too hard to see endpoint security via a hypothetical “big picture” which can obscure some of the smaller details. In fact, the size of your business can change which capabilities you need.
Here’s what we mean.
How Your Business Size Can Affect Your Endpoint Security Needs
Small Businesses Need More “Legacy” Capabilities
For small to medium sized businesses (SMBs), trying to focus on the big picture can obfuscate their endpoint security needs. While SMBs are as likely a target as large enterprises for cyber attacks, the nature of these attacks differ.
A hacker might spend months devising a means to infiltrate the network of a global corporation, seeking out a weak spot in its digital perimeter, and using unmonitored devices like IoT fish tanks to leapfrog to sensitive data bases. Conversely, to attack a SMB a hacker may just send a phishing attack or a ransomware attack.
Of course, large enterprises can suffer from phishing and ransomware as well, but the scope and scale changes with the IT environment. SMBs usually have fewer servers and devices connecting to their networks; achieving visibility isn’t as much of a challenge. Neither is ensuring continuous and consistent digital perimeter protections across connected devices.
Thus, SMBs can benefit from capabilities that might be considered “legacy” when discussing global businesses. These can include firewalls, antivirus, virtual private networks (VPNs), and web filtering. Due to the threat landscape, SMBs should only seek out the next-generation counterparts of these technologies.
But the implementation of these capabilities, sometimes dismissed and neglected, can significantly reduce the data breaches SMBs suffer. Given that SMBs are more likely to shutter in the wake of a data breach, this is exceptionally critical information.
Large Businesses Need Something Beyond the Traditional
Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR) scans endpoints for threats which penetrated the digital perimeter and may lurk unmonitored. It also generates alerts of potential security alerts for investigation by security teams which can trigger remediation.
For large enterprises, EDR provides a crucial tool for cybersecurity visibility and quick remediation. For a SMB, EDR can overwhelm their limited cybersecurity teams with alerts and make investigations harder rather than easier.
Other capabilities which can assist with endpoint security needs for global organizations can include data loss prevention, application control, port control, and extended detection and response (XDR).
Some SMBs can benefit from these capabilities as well, and others may find them obtrusive. It all depends on industry, devices, and database organization. Your unique use case should determine which capabilities you seek out.
Find out more in our Endpoint Security Buyer’s Guide.
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