What is Endpoint Security?

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In an enterprise network, any device connecting remotely to the network has the potential to be a possible entry point for security threats; so there arises an essential need for securing various endpoints to address risks presented by remote devices. Those devices include servers, laptops, smartphones, tablets, desktop PCs and other IoT devices. This process of securing endpoints in an enterprise network is called Endpoint Security or Endpoint Protection.

Why Security Strategy Demands Endpoint Security?

Owing to the growing trend of (BYOD) Bring Your Own Device, any location and any network flexibility; enterprise data has become more vulnerable to cybercriminals in the recent years. No wonder, the newly arising challenges are a bottleneck for network administrators. Substantially, the need for endpoint security is becoming increasingly important to adequately block illegal access attempts, threats, and malware at endpoints.

With the increasing number of endpoint devices trying to connect to the corporate network, the security perimeter is no longer definable and the centralized security solution is too insufficient to meet the greater security needs. Endpoint security successfully replaces centralized security measures with its effective endpoint protection features.

In the corporate network security protocol, it becomes mandatory for all endpoint devices to meet the set security standards before being permitted to access the network. By doing so, corporates will be able to control and manage the growing number of end-user access points. Besides that, corporates will also be equipped with the right set of tools to monitor and evade malicious activities.

The Difference between Antivirus Software and Endpoint Security

Endpoint security perfectly secures an entire enterprise network. Endpoint security is reliable, effective, quick to react and smart enough to protect information from all sorts of threats that are known and unknown. Their design is ever-ready to evade unauthorized access, downloading or uploading of data and instantaneously blocks all malicious activity.

Anti-virus software best-fits the PCs, its personal firewalls are basics of the hybrid endpoint protection solution offerings. The features and functionalities of endpoint security target and work on more advanced methodologies and technologies. The notable features of endpoint security are data loss prevention, insider threat protection, application whitelisting or control, network access control, data classification, endpoint detection and response and privileged user control.

How Endpoint Security Differs for Consumers and Enterprises

According to TechRepublic, endpoint security is available for both consumers and enterprise networks; however the configurations differ in each-other. In the consumer Endpoint Security model, application and signature are accessed from developers’ control servers delivered through the internet and there’s no centralized administration and management.

In the corporate/enterprise model, the centralized administration is present. The interface is centralized and entries from various endpoints are directed to the central server for evaluation and analysis. After downloading of application and signature, updates are sent out to endpoint devices within the network by the central server.

Critical Endpoint Security Components

The two critical endpoint security components are application control and endpoint encryption. These two act as the endpoint protection layers preventing from all kinds of data leaks. Basically, the potential entry point for threats is through the end user devices, endpoint encryption encrypts the data on endpoints which include laptops, smartphones, tablets, desktop PCs and other storage devices such as CDs and USBs alongside the individual files and folders.

With Application control, organizations can prevent the execution of unauthorized applications on endpoints. On the other hand, employees will be prohibited from downloading unauthenticated data or applications that prove to be hazardous on mobile devices, which can invite network threats and lead to unauthorized access in the network.

What is Endpoint Security
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Importance of Endpoint Protection in Modern Security Strategies

In today’s digital era where sensitive data gets stored electronically in the computer servers, organizations can no longer operate without some form of Endpoint Protection.

The costs associated with network downtime or stolen data resulting from malicious attacks significantly outweigh the cost of maintaining an up to date Endpoint Protection software.

Endpoint security software is fundamentally different from the antivirus software. Unlike the Antivirus protection wherein an individual device gets protected, endpoint protection software protects the entire network as a whole including the endpoints (devices used to access the network). Beyond this, the endpoint security software is also responsible for its self-security.

The ultimate aim of Endpoint Protection software is to protect any sensitive business information residing on Endpoints (connected devices) to reduce corporate risk exposure.

Current Threat Landscape

Security threats for endpoints (connected devices) are evolving at an exponential rate every day and are becoming increasingly difficult to prevent or mitigate. The availability of free and open-source malware and development tools is making it much easier for hackers to develop and spread malicious software.

As more and more data resides at the endpoints, organizations are being forced to protect those endpoints which have critical corporate data. Securing the network perimeter by placing sensitive corporate data in a locked vault with towering walls, is no longer a viable solution.

In many cases, the obvious solution to prevent cyber attacks on endpoints would be to restrict user privileges, but this strategy is ruled out because Internet connectivity and the essential plug-ins associated with it are part of everyday operations.

Due to the factors mentioned above, Endpoint Protection offerings are also continuously evolving to keep pace. Thus, Endpoint Protection solutions that are available today come with many different functionalities and covers separate components of the endpoint.

This consolidation or integration of software solution into a single Endpoint protection suite has not only improved the security management capabilities for IT admins but also enhanced the security of endpoints to a large extent. Thus, for obvious reasons, Endpoint protection has found a safe place in the IT sector and wherever IT security is of importance.

If you are in search of a good endpoint protection software, choose Comodo Advance Endpoint Protection. It is a complete endpoint protection platform comprising multiple security technologies, like the anti-virus, HIPS, web filtering, personal firewall, white/blacklisting, application control, device control, Secure Auto-Containment, etc.

Key benefits of using Comodo Advance Endpoint Protection

  • Comes with auto-sandboxing technology that denies access to unknown files.
  • One centralized management console.
  • Unique panoramic view of the endpoint estate with critical endpoint metrics.
  • Automatically uninstalls legacy/existing antivirus products.
  • Manages Endpoint Security Manager configurations.
  • Manages CPU, RAM and hard disk usage.
  • Manages services, processes and applications.
  • Manages endpoint power consumption.
  • Manages USB devices
  • Set-and-forget policies ensure that endpoint configurations are automatically re-applied if they cease being compliant.

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Know the Difference – Viruses Vs Worms Vs Trojans!

Viruses Vs Worms Vs Trojans

Solution

Most often, in the computer world, users often use the term virus to refer to a malicious code, which is really not. There are different types of malicious code that includes viruses, worms, Trojans, ransomware, etc.

What is a virus?

A computer virus is a small piece of infectious code, which works to modify the operation of the computer without the user’s consent.

A virus must function in the following two ways

It should be able to execute by itself – It replaces its malicious code in the execution path of the original program

It should be able to replicate by itself – It replicates its malicious code into multiple copies and it replaces other files with a copy of its infected file. Computer viruses infect PCs and network servers.

Viruses are programmed in different ways to serve different purposes. For instance, some are developed to infect the computer by deleting files. damaging programs or formatting the hard disk without the user’s consent. While others are benign and are developed to replicate into copies by themselves notifying the user about their presence by sharing text, audio messages and videos. The latter can use up the computer memory which is actually used by genuine programs – this results in unpredictable behavior leading to system crashes.

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→ Default Deny Security

→ Cloud-based Advanced Malware Analysis

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There are five recognized types of viruses:

1. File infector viruses

As the name suggests, this type of virus infects program files. This type of virus infects executable codes like .exe files and .com files. They are potential to infect the other files when running from a network, floppy or hard drive.

Example – Jerusalem and Cascade

2. Boot sector viruses

Boot sector viruses infect the boot record on hard disks and floppy disks. There is a small program in the boot record of all floppy disks and hard disks, that is run when the user starts up the system. Boot sector viruses attach themselves to this part of the disk and activate when the user attempts to start up from the infected disk. These viruses reside in the memory. Most of these viruses were developed to attack DOS, however, all PCs, regardless of the operating system, are targeted by this virus. The main game is that a PC with an infected floppy disk would be a potential target for a boot vector viruses.

Example – Disk Killer, Stoned

3. Master Boot Record Viruses

Master boot record viruses are more like boot sector viruses that reside in the memory and infects the disks. The location of the virus code makes the difference between the Master boot record viruses and boot sector viruses. Hackers generally store a genuine copy of the master boot record in a different location.

Example – AntiExe, and Unashamed

4. Multipartite Viruses

This is also known as Polypartite virus and it has been developed by the hackers to infect both program files and boot records. This type of infection is difficult to repair. Though the files have been cleaned, the virus reinfects those files, if the virus is not removed from the boot area.

Examples – Anthrax, One_Half, Tequilla and Emperor

5. Macro viruses

These viruses infect data files, with the coming of Visual Basic in Microsoft Office 97, a macro virus can be written to infect data files but also has the capability to infect other files as well. Macro viruses infect Microsoft Office Excel, Word, Access and PowerPoint files. These macro viruses exploit the use of other program’s programming language, that has been created to allow users to automate certain tasks within the application. Due to its ease, there are thousands of such viruses.

Examples – W97M.Groov and W97M.Melissa

What is a Trojan horse?

Trojan horses are humbugs – malicious files that claim to be something desirable to deceive the user for a fraudulent gain. It is distinct from computer viruses as they do not replicate as the viruses do. Trojans have malicious code, that, when stimulated, cause data theft. The Trojans spread its infection only when the user opens a malicious email attachment through which these infectious programs enter the computer

Example – The PWSteal.Trojan is a Trojan.

What is a worm?

Worms replicate themselves from one system to the other by using the host file. Worms exist inside another file, most commonly in Word or Excel document. Worms differ in using host file when compared to viruses. The worm infects a document and releases it while the worm macro is still residing inside the document. And hence the document as a whole is considered a worm

Example – PrettyPark.Worm

Know how to Protect your devices from Viruses, Worms, and Trojans

Keep your software and applications up to date –

Updating the Operating Systems and other applications of the users’ devices with the latest security patch fixes would help users battle against the malware that potentially targets outdated vulnerable devices.

Install Antivirus Software

There are umpteen antivirus solutions available as free and paid versions to fit the security requirements of both individuals and businesses – high and low. There are some market leaders like Comodo which offers Internet security suite that offers complete 360 degree protection combining Antivirus, Firewall, Containment Technology, Host Intrusion Prevention, Cloud Delivered Protection, Secure Shopping, Protection Against Man-in-the-Middle Attacks, Secure DNS, Real-Time Scan, Viruscope, Web Filtering, Rescue Disk, Virtual Desktop, Kill Switch, Antivirus Updates and Protection against Fileless Malware. When all these are put together under a single roof, It works efficiently to render malicious programs useless and prevent them from even reaching your computer.

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Ransomware Threats and Endpoint Security – An Overview

ransomware threats and endpoint security

Ransomware is a type of malware that threatens to erase or deny access to data once it has taken over your computer. The attacker demands ransom, usually through cryptocurrency, in order to restore your access to the files. Owing to the growing trend of ransomware attacks, enterprises and their data have become more vulnerable to cybercriminals in the recent years. Thereby, it is vital to secure corporate network endpoints through advanced endpoint protection software to evade all types of cyber attacks.

In this article, we discuss ransomware threats and essential endpoint security tools that organizations require in order to steer clear from all types of cyber threats.

How Ransomware Works

It is important to know how Ransomware takes control of your computer.

Basically, ransomware attacks arrive in the form of Phishing Emails that disguise as important files or software updates. Once the victim opens the email and downloads the content, the malware installs itself on the computer and starts running in the background without the knowledge of the user. Latest forms of ransomware malware, like NotPetya, make use of the security weak spots to attack the computers without needing to trick users.

The victimized computer files are locked and denied access using a mathematical key known only to the attacker. Usually, the victim’s screen is prompted with a message stating that their files are inaccessible and will only become accessible if the victim transfers the ransom through untraceable Bitcoin payment. In the recent years, Ransomware attacks have been targeted at corporate levels.

It is necessary to secure all the remote devices such as laptops, mobile devices and other wireless devices using endpoint security software in order to successfully prevent attacks from infiltrating your network.

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Need 100% protection against Ransomware?

Comodo Advanced Endpoint Protection (Comodo AEP), Get complete protection for every endpoint on your network.

→ Free Trial for 30 days

→ 7-Layers Enpoint Security Platform

→ Default Deny Security

→ Cloud-based Advanced Malware Analysis

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How to Prevent Ransomware?

Good security practices help prevent ransomware infection, so following them rigorously improves your protection from all types of online threats.

  • Keep your operating system up-to-date and patched
  • Unless you are fully aware of what you are doing, don’t install any software or give it administrative privileges
  • Install advanced endpoint protection software, which detects malicious programs
  • Back up your files, regularly and automatically

Ransomware Examples

Some of the most malicious Ransomware examples are listed below:

  • WannaCry: the ransomware attack happened worldwide in May 2017. It targeted computers running Windows OS and spread autonomously from computer to computer.
  • NotPetya: a Russian-directed online attack against Ukraine. The ransomware spread from computer to computer using EternalBlue.
  • Locky: a ransomware released in 2016 was very active until 2017.
  • TeslaCrypt: the malware that targeted gaming files was constantly reinforced by hackers during its terror reign.
  • CryptoLocker: the ransomware attack happened in 2013. The malware successfully infected 500,000 computers.

Comodo Advanced Endpoint Security software brings 7 layers of defense to protect against both known and unknown threats. For more details visit our official Endpoint Security page.

How Ransomware Works

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About Keyloggers

about keylogger software

A keylogger is a software or hardware device designed to secretly track the keystrokes. However, a keylogger as a software is more common and is preferred to keylogging device as a hardware.

Considering the importance of information security, users should be aware that there are two forms of keyloggers – software and hardware.

keyloggers are also used to serve legitimate purposes that include parental control, company security, and more reasons to add.

Though keylogging programs are developed for legitimate intentions, they can very well be used with malicious or criminal intent. In fact, they are primarily used to steal user data.

Furthermore, many keyloggers have rootkit functionality to hide in the system and escape users’ attention.

Comodo Antivirus lab has a dedicated system to identify the keylogging functionality of malware. Some of the keyloggers are Trojan-Spy programs, Trojan-Spy that works to track users’ activities and information, save the information to the hard disk and forward to the malware author. The extracted information would be screenshots and keystrokes which are most often used in stealing banking data.

Why Keyloggers are a Threat

Keyloggers do not pose a threat to the user’s system, however, they do pose a serious threat to users and users’ data. Keyloggers work to extract passwords and login credentials and also confidential information entered through the keyboard. As a result, malware authors can get PIN codes and account numbers, passwords to online shopping sites, email addresses, email logins and passwords, etc.

When the cyber-criminals get a hold of sensitive data, they can exploit the extracted data to transfer the money from the user’s account. Keyloggers can sometimes be used for both political and industrial espionage to access proprietary commercial data and government material, thereby compromising both the commercial and state-owned company’s data.

Keylogger Construction

The working strategy of any keylogger is to get into the event when the key is pressed and when the information about the keystroke is displayed on the monitor.

Following are the ways that keyloggers gain access to the user’s information:

  • Video surveillance
  • Substituting the keyboard driver
  • Terminating DLL functions in user mode
  • A hardware bug in the keyboard
  • Incorporating filter driver in the keyboard stack

Keylogging can be one of two different categories:

Keylogging devices – these are small hardware devices that are possibly fixed to the user’s keyboard or secretly positioned within a computer or its cable, without their knowledge

Keylogging software – this is a software application developed by malicious programmers to track keystrokes and simultaneously log them.

How Keyloggers Spread

As most of the malware programs do, keyloggers spread in the same way. Keyloggers are spread through the following ways:

  • A keylogger is installed when the victim opens a suspicious attachment from the mail
  • When a file is introduced on a P2P network, from an open-access directory, a keylogger can be installed.
  • A keylogger can be launched through a web page script
  • A keylogger can be installed in the victim’s machine through an existing malicious program in the victim’s system.

How to Protect Yourself from Keyloggers

Most of the Information security companies have updated their security products with the latest malware definitions including the prominent keyloggers. So, be sure that your antivirus includes the latest up-to-date malware definition.

Install an antivirus product with latest up-to-date malware definition. As the main intent of keyloggers is to steal confidential banking information – following are the ways to protect the information from unknown keyloggers:

  • Implement the use of one-time passwords/ two-factor authentication
  • Implement a proactive protection system developed to identify keylogging software
  • Prefer to use a virtual keyboard while performing a banking transaction

Conclusion

It is advisable to stay vigilant with a proactive internet security system. Comodo Antivirus works best with proactive protection features like a Default Deny System, Containment technology and Sandboxing battle against even the most threatening keylogging activities.

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Hour-Zero Detection: The First Step to Guaranteed Protection

Forensic Analysis Tool

As breaches and hacks consistently rise in prevalence, cyber-security is no longer an option – it’s an absolute necessity. There’s a notion among many companies that what has occurred to a countless amount of big-name (and other) companies somehow will never happen to them. Truth is: no company is exempt from the advanced threats and breaches that plague the internet today. So, the question remains: what’s the best possible solution?

With any issue, it’s imperative to address the root of the problem in order to effectively provide a solution. There are 1 million new viruses created every day, only further increasing the possibility of threats lurking on your endpoints. In addition to having unique visibility into the Dark Web by leveraging 85+ million endpoints and also providing 45 second file verdicts 95% of the time – Comodo has some of the most innovative security solutions, designed to combat the advanced threats we unearth daily. From this visibility, we know that being proactive rather than reactive is the only way to guarantee protection against sophisticated vectors.

Malware Scan for Discovery: A Proactive Approach to Security

Comodo’s Forensic Analysis Tool is a FREE and comprehensive solution that detects all types of malware to provide you with visibility into the current threats on your endpoints, which can ultimately result in your critical data being compromised.

Comodo’s ongoing mission is ‘Creating Trust Online’. With dedication to that mission, we’ve created the Forensic Analysis Tool that serves the purpose of keeping the internet and your endpoints malware-free. The first step to protection is detection. And in order to detect all malware, both known and unknown, you must have the appropriate tool for a proactive security-solution. Our Forensic Analysis Tool possesses all the necessary features to keep your endpoints secure and to find out what unknown malware is hiding on your network and endpoints – all in as little as 15 minutes.

Simple and Efficient: How it Works

Designed with your business in mind, the Comodo Forensic Analysis Tool is a lightweight, easy-to-use scanner which identifies unknown and potentially malicious files residing on your network. All audited files are then classified as safe, malicious, or unknown through the tool and Valkyrie, our cloud-based file analysis, where they will be tested to determine whether they are harmful or not.

You can view a report of these tests in the CFA interface, which displays results of the files analyzed by both Forensic Analysis and Valkyrie analysis. You can also opt to have detailed scan reports sent to your email.

Comprehensive Scan and Detection: Features and Benefits

When running the Forensic Analysis Tool, you can select the specific scan targets that best meet your company’s network setup. The easy-to-use Scan Wizard gives you an option to select one of the following scan targets:

  • Active Directory: Suitable for a corporate environment where a large number of endpoints need to be scanned within a network.
  • Workgroup: Allows you to add computers that belong to a work group.
  • Network Address: Specify target endpoints by host name, IP address or IP range.
  • This Computer: Allows you to run a scan on your local device.

Once our Valkyrie analysis platform has found verdicts for both known and unknown files, your results will be automatically shown in the Forensic Analysis Tool’s interface. Scan results are listed for each computer by name with their detected files; and each row has a quick summary of the scan results, including total files scanned and how many were malicious or unknown. Administrators can view the infected files, malicious files, the files that are in analysis, and unknown files all in the CFA interface.

The Comodo Forensic Analysis Tool provides three different types of reports:

  • Executive Valkyrie Report: A summary of scan results which provides details such as when the scan was started and finished, number of devices scanned, and so on.
  • Device Valkyrie Report: The ‘Per Device Report’ shows the trust rating of files on each device scanned. It includes details of malicious items found on each device, unknown files found, files that are still in-analysis and the path of files.
  • Program Valkyrie Report: The ‘Per Program Report’ shows the footprint of each file analyzed by Valkyrie. This includes details of each malicious/unknown file found, the devices on which they were found, the path of the files and more.

Other critical features of the tool’s interface include the following:

  • Title Bar: Displays the scanning progress.
  • Menu Bar: Contains controls for using the application.
  • Reports: Allows administrators to view reports generated by Valkyrie.
  • Help: The ‘About’ menu contains troubleshooting advice and shows product and version information.
  • Search: Allows administrators to search for listed endpoints by name.
  • Main Display Area: Displays details of scanned endpoints and the results from Valkyrie. Also contains the controls for scanning and for launching local or custom scans.
    • Scan Now – Scan endpoints on your local network to identify unknown files.
    • Custom Scan – Allows you to scan endpoints in a Workgroup, Active Directory, or Network Addresses. You can also scan your local computer.
  • Email Form Area: Enter your email address after the Valkyrie analysis is complete to receive a detailed scan report.

You can gain all of the features and benefits of our Forensic Analysis tool at no cost, as part of our pledge to create trust online by simply giving you visibility into the threats against the endpoints that hold your most valuable assets. It is estimated that traditional antivirus software can only catch 40% of all malware in the world today. The other 60% are “unknown”. But with the backing of our Valkyrie cloud-based engine and our unique visibility, Comodo’s Forensic Analysis Tool detects all unknown files.

1 out of every 3 devices we’ve scanned with our Forensic Analysis Tool result in malware or unknown file types found. Be 100% sure that yours isn’t one of them by starting with a malware discovery using Comodo Forensic Analysis Tool.

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