Winning the Three-Legged Race Toward Endpoint Protection

Every summer, my (very large) extended family gathers on our ranch in the Intermountain West for an annual reunion. Part of the celebration includes a favorite family pastime: the three-legged race. This consists of couples pitted against each other in a short sprint, where team members have their leg strapped to the opposite leg of their partner — giving them, in essence, three legs to complete the race.

Usually every team but one ends up rolling on the ground in laughter, while one lucky pair actually grasps that this is a game of communication as much as it is cooperation. The team that wins the race understands it must function in synchronicity to effectively cross the finish line.

IT Security and Operations: A New Three-Legged Race

If your organization is like most, IT security and operations teams probably function a lot like the duos in my family’s three-legged race. Most of the time, they lurch about clumsily, one team pulling in one direction and the other on a different path, flailing about and going nowhere fast. And while that might be an amusing sight at a family reunion when the stakes are low, it’s not so funny when you consider what’s at stake for your organization if your teams can’t operate in unison: the heightened risk of a security breach that could cost you millions.

IT operations is tasked with endpoint management; IT security is tasked with endpoint protection. Every new tool, handoff and process between these two teams creates another opportunity for your defenses to be breached and for additional time and cost to be added. Siloed teams can’t effectively protect you from operational and security threats in today’s world.

The key to having a secure endpoint environment is to have complete visibility and control into all endpoints both on and off your network. If you don’t, you could end up with your name splashed across the headlines as the latest loser in the cybersecurity three-legged race.

Once you establish complete visibility into all your endpoints, you also need the ability to take action in real time to protect these endpoints before they are exploited. Hackers are your opponents in the race, and they have a growing number of sophisticated tools at their disposal — which means a window of opportunity of only a few minutes might be enough to cause you significant financial and reputational damage.

Handling the Endpoint Protection Challenge

Many of the breached companies blasted across the headlines recently had identified the vulnerabilities that existed in their networks but lacked the tools to take immediate action to remediate endpoints. And in some ways, that’s understandable: A complex, growing endpoint environment and an increasingly mobile workforce make the ability to remediate quickly and efficiently a tough challenge. But it doesn’t have to be.

IBM BigFix allows IT security and operations teams to work in unison, and eliminates the traditional silo approach. Built on the world’s largest and deepest security portfolio, BigFix closes the gap between these two groups, giving you real-time situational awareness of every endpoint on your network — regardless of device type or location — and the ability to detect and respond to threats with blazing speed.

That means your team can be the one that functions in unison — and wins the three-legged endpoint protection race against would-be cybercriminals.

Read the white paper: the endpoint platform for organizations of every size

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Mitch Mayne

Public Information Officer, IBM X-Force Threat Intelligence

Mitch is the Public Information Officer (PIO) for IBM Security X-Force Threat Intelligence, and is responsible for how IBM X-Force communicates both internally and externally during global or widespread cyber incidents. Mitch is also the lead branding officer for IBM X-Force, and a regular contributing author and podcast host on SecurityIntelligence.com. Mitch specializes in translating deep technical content into usable, consumable information for the everyday business user. Mitch's expertise includes software, services, and business partner communication; content marketing; and brand design and implementation. He holds a Masters Degree in Communication and Media from Stanford University.