A Warm Welcome for Hackers: Games like Counterstrike & Co. on Your Computers
IT Managers, CIOs and Security Managers who are responsible for ensuring that company data is secure and the IT environment is available to employees at all times thought their network protected by using firewalls, virus scanners and security regulations for employees. The tricky thing is that the hackers always use new, mostly unknown, small security gaps in the network for their attacks, rather than the open “front door,” which is usually best protected. This means that an attack with a virus is no longer very lucrative for cyber criminals, as a virus scanner detects and renders these harmless in most cases.
Do you already suspect that hidden dangers could lurk in your IT wilderness? But you have no way to quickly identify and counteract these risks?
Let’s take a look at how these unknown loopholes in your network and what you need to do to detect and close these security gaps.
Open Doors for Hackers
Cyber criminals are taking advantage of the fact that more and more software products and new technologies are in use, which leads to a lack of overview for the IT departments. You can imagine that this also makes it more difficult to keep an eye on potential security risks. Cyber criminals are taking advantage of the fact that more and more software products and new technologies are in use, which leads to a lack of overview for the IT departments. You can imagine that this also makes it more difficult to keep an eye on potential security risks.
Security gaps not detected by a virus scanner or held off by a firewall can be caused by:
- Software products installed in different versions and with outdated patch levels
- End-of-life software, where new security issues are no longer supported by the vendor
- Software unknown to the IT department (e.g. games, non-business software, peer-2-peer applications), which entered the network through illegal internet downloads, plugins and portable apps, where employees do not require any installation rights
Unknown software can cause security gaps in the enterprise network in several ways. On one hand, a software that’s unknown by the IT department is also not updated with the current security patch. The outdated version might provide access to the network for hackers.
On the other hand, data can be exchanged with people outside the company without the IT department having an overview of what’s coming into the network and what data is going out of it. This means sensitive company data might be leaving the network, which can lead to considerable financial damage and loss of reputation.
What You Can Do to Save Your Company and Reduce IT Security Risks Significantly?
This information allows you to quickly identify security gaps in order to:
- Upgrade the old patch versions to the latest security level
- Migrate to the latest software version, if a maintenance contract exists
- Remove end-of-life software to avoid software that is not up-to-date to the latest security standards
- Detect and remove software that is not intended for the business purpose and that may cause possible security gaps for the network.
With a transparent overview and valuable additional information about software categories and functionalities, the software portfolio of your company can be consolidated. In doing so, the amount of software that has the same or similar functionalities is reduced to a minimum. From an IT perspective, this leads to fewer potential sources of risk, since fewer software products must be maintained and patched. At the same time, you can reduce the internal costs for software handling and IT software operation.
Consolidating your software portfolio and keeping a continuous overview of the software installations enables you to reduce the risk of hacker attacks, data loss and the resulting damage. To achieve this, you need the appropriate tools and intelligent analysis methods.
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