Welcome!

Cloud Security Authors: Xenia von Wedel, Elizabeth White, James Carlini, Pat Romanski, Rostyslav Demush

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Cloud Security, Government Cloud

@CloudExpo: Article

Endpoint Device Management By @Kevin_Jackson | @CloudExpo #Cloud

Protecting the enterprise front door

Mobility and cloud computing have combined to obliterate any so-called network security perimeter. Corporate data has now been let loose to roam in a world of cyber thieves, manipulators and untrusted infrastructure. What is a security professional to do?

According to Bill Odell, the Dell Vice President of Marketing for Endpoint Device Management, you need to protect the enterprise front door. Since devices are the network's gateways, endpoint device management is now the key to protecting your enterprise data. That is why I was truly excited to speak with Bill at Dell Peak Performance in Las Vegas earlier this year.

Kevin Jackson: Bill, I am really honored to get some time on your schedule today. Could you please explain to my readers your role at Dell?

Bill Odell: First Kevin, thank you for interviewing me today. I run marketing for Dell end-point device management. We provide solutions that help our customers manage and secure anything from a laptop or a PC to their servers, mobile devices and smartphones. With the explosion of different networking devices our solutions have now expanded to include printers, IP phones, network switches or anything else that may come online in the future.

Jackson: Sounds like your day job is the Internet of Things. With the advent of this new vision of the Internet what has changed with respect to security on these new types of end points? I imagine the proliferation of network-connected devices is really driving new cybersecurity challenges.

Odell: That's exactly right, Kevin. Some have predicted that 50 billion devices and objects will be connected to the Internet by 2020. That type of environment absolutely changes the way companies deal with security. Trying to lockdown a windows PC is bad enough, but now you need to worry about other operating systems. This realization has changed our opinion on what Dell needs to do. Today our solutions help customers securely operate in this new world by identifying and profiling devices when they join your network. Through a single pane of glass, our solution will tell you what devices are connected, where they are connecting from and if they are owned by the corporation. This really helps when people are free to connect their own personal device to the company network.

Jackson: You mentioned that Dell solutions can actually profile the end point devices. I imagine this is an important capability when dealing with events like the recent Windows 10 launch. As the different device types and operating systems proliferate, what is the number one cybersecurity challenge being faced by your customers and partners today?

Odell: Every endpoint is a point of attack. In fact, many of the recent well-known attacks have started from point-of-sale terminals attached to the network. That is why our solutions are built around delivering three important features.

First, we continually assess the network environment. This means not only knowing what devices are on the network but also their configuration. By comparing device configuration with the company standard, our software can immediately detect any changes or modifications. Users love to customize but a change may reduce the security of a device. To maintain a required security level, companies need to keep tight specifications and an ability to dynamically monitor device configurations is critical. Second, we scan for any outside intrusions. We do this dynamically on all connected devices. Third, we maintain a consistent patching regimen. This is an age-old defensive process but some customers simply lack the resources to keep this necessary activity up to date. I actually had a customer who serves as the CISO at a major university tell me that they didn't do anti-virus patching because attackers on the offense were simply faster than they were on the defense. This "drive-by malware" reality emphasizes the need for continuous patching on anti-virus and all your other application as well.

Dell integrated endpoint management solution

Jackson: Dell's portfolio sound very comprehensive and complete so how do you plan to improve it over the next 12 months?

Odell: Security is an ever moving target. A breach isn't a matter of "if" but of "when" so companies should focus on building up their ability to detect breaches ahead of time and hasten their breach response protocol when it occurs. That is exactly why Dell brings a broad portfolio to bear on this issue. Everything from Advance Threat Detection with SecureWorks and network protection with Sonicwall through endpoint protection with KACE and encryption down at the data level. The trickiest aspect of endpoint protection however, is the lack of configuration management APIs for non-standard network devices and operating systems. As those devices and operating systems become "smarter", we will update our software and solutions to further enable more dynamic and interactive endpoint management.

Jackson: We all look forward to those new capabilities. At Dell Peak Performance, we heard that enterprises have suffered over $600B in cybersecurity losses against just a $200B investment to protect against these losses. What should senior decision makers and IT professionals learn from this statistic?

Odell: This is a tough problem that requires constant vigilance and lack of endpoint security provides a major thoroughfare for these losses. The Canadian Cyber Incident Response Centre (CCIRC) recommended four mitigation strategies which, according to them, could prevent as much as 85 percent of targeted cyber-attacks. The four strategies are:

  1. the use of application whitelisting,
  2. patching of applications,
  3. patching of operating systems, and
  4. more restrictive administrative privileges.

All of these protective measures can be implemented through effective endpoint protection policy and enforcement. These strategies, originally developed by the Australian Government, were also endorse in May 2015 by the US Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US-CERT). Endpoint device protection represent "table stakes" in this cybersecurity game. As time goes on, we will get better in the understanding of related analytics and in the recognition of threat patterns.

Jackson: I now envision you as a bouncer standing at the enterprise front door protecting it against that 85 percent of targeted cyber-attacks. What industry-specific insights have you learned while fulfilling that role?

Odell: From our business perspective, the top two industries are education and healthcare. Part of that is because our solutions are very comprehensive and at the same time, easy to use. In education, since school districts can't afford to give every student a laptop or tablet, "bring your own device" is the most important challenge. Much of the curricula and many tests are accessed using personal devices over the school network. We help educators securely leverage technology while maintaining an online environment that's also conducive to learning.

In healthcare we not only deal with regulatory issues around Personally Identifiable Information (PII) and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) but also aspects associate with smart patient monitoring devices connected to the hospital network. In that environment, we give hospital administrators an ability to inventory, locate and manage all of the hospital's patient care devices from a single console. We secure not only the device but the patient status data as well.

Jackson: In the not too distant future I may sport a Dell KACE managed pacemaker in my chest. So Bill, do you have any final comments or specific recommendations for corporate decision makers?

Odell: With the proliferation and explosion of smart devices and systems, decision makers must not forget about protecting their endpoint devices.

Jackson: In other words, protect that front door. Well, thank you, Bill for sharing your time with us today.

Odell: Thank you, Kevin. I enjoyed it.

This post was written as part of the Dell Insight Partners program, which provides news and analysis about the evolving world of tech. Dell sponsored this article, but the opinions are my own and don’t necessarily represent Dell’s positions or strategies.

Cloud Musings

(Thank you. If you enjoyed this article, get free updates by email or RSS - © Copyright Kevin L. Jackson 2015)

More Stories By Kevin Jackson

Kevin Jackson, founder of the GovCloud Network, is an independent technology and business consultant specializing in mission critical solutions. He has served in various senior management positions including VP & GM Cloud Services NJVC, Worldwide Sales Executive for IBM and VP Program Management Office at JP Morgan Chase. His formal education includes MSEE (Computer Engineering), MA National Security & Strategic Studies and a BS Aerospace Engineering. Jackson graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1979 and retired from the US Navy earning specialties in Space Systems Engineering, Airborne Logistics and Airborne Command and Control. He also served with the National Reconnaissance Office, Operational Support Office, providing tactical support to Navy and Marine Corps forces worldwide. Kevin is the founder and author of “Cloud Musings”, a widely followed blog that focuses on the use of cloud computing by the Federal government. He is also the editor and founder of “Government Cloud Computing” electronic magazine, published at Ulitzer.com. To set up an appointment CLICK HERE

@ThingsExpo Stories
BnkToTheFuture.com is the largest online investment platform for investing in FinTech, Bitcoin and Blockchain companies. We believe the future of finance looks very different from the past and we aim to invest and provide trading opportunities for qualifying investors that want to build a portfolio in the sector in compliance with international financial regulations.
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, whic...
Imagine if you will, a retail floor so densely packed with sensors that they can pick up the movements of insects scurrying across a store aisle. Or a component of a piece of factory equipment so well-instrumented that its digital twin provides resolution down to the micrometer.
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, provided an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life settle...
Product connectivity goes hand and hand these days with increased use of personal data. New IoT devices are becoming more personalized than ever before. In his session at 22nd Cloud Expo | DXWorld Expo, Nicolas Fierro, CEO of MIMIR Blockchain Solutions, will discuss how in order to protect your data and privacy, IoT applications need to embrace Blockchain technology for a new level of product security never before seen - or needed.
Leading companies, from the Global Fortune 500 to the smallest companies, are adopting hybrid cloud as the path to business advantage. Hybrid cloud depends on cloud services and on-premises infrastructure working in unison. Successful implementations require new levels of data mobility, enabled by an automated and seamless flow across on-premises and cloud resources. In his general session at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Tevis, an IBM Storage Software Technical Strategist and Customer Solution Architec...
Nordstrom is transforming the way that they do business and the cloud is the key to enabling speed and hyper personalized customer experiences. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ken Schow, VP of Engineering at Nordstrom, discussed some of the key learnings and common pitfalls of large enterprises moving to the cloud. This includes strategies around choosing a cloud provider(s), architecture, and lessons learned. In addition, he covered some of the best practices for structured team migration an...
No hype cycles or predictions of a gazillion things here. IoT is here. You get it. You know your business and have great ideas for a business transformation strategy. What comes next? Time to make it happen. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jay Mason, an Associate Partner of Analytics, IoT & Cybersecurity at M&S Consulting, presented a step-by-step plan to develop your technology implementation strategy. He also discussed the evaluation of communication standards and IoT messaging protocols, data...
Coca-Cola’s Google powered digital signage system lays the groundwork for a more valuable connection between Coke and its customers. Digital signs pair software with high-resolution displays so that a message can be changed instantly based on what the operator wants to communicate or sell. In their Day 3 Keynote at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Chambers, Global Group Director, Digital Innovation, Coca-Cola, and Vidya Nagarajan, a Senior Product Manager at Google, discussed how from store operations and ...
In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Raju Shreewastava, founder of Big Data Trunk, provided a fun and simple way to introduce Machine Leaning to anyone and everyone. He solved a machine learning problem and demonstrated an easy way to be able to do machine learning without even coding. Raju Shreewastava is the founder of Big Data Trunk (www.BigDataTrunk.com), a Big Data Training and consulting firm with offices in the United States. He previously led the data warehouse/business intelligence and B...
"IBM is really all in on blockchain. We take a look at sort of the history of blockchain ledger technologies. It started out with bitcoin, Ethereum, and IBM evaluated these particular blockchain technologies and found they were anonymous and permissionless and that many companies were looking for permissioned blockchain," stated René Bostic, Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Conventi...
When shopping for a new data processing platform for IoT solutions, many development teams want to be able to test-drive options before making a choice. Yet when evaluating an IoT solution, it’s simply not feasible to do so at scale with physical devices. Building a sensor simulator is the next best choice; however, generating a realistic simulation at very high TPS with ease of configurability is a formidable challenge. When dealing with multiple application or transport protocols, you would be...
Smart cities have the potential to change our lives at so many levels for citizens: less pollution, reduced parking obstacles, better health, education and more energy savings. Real-time data streaming and the Internet of Things (IoT) possess the power to turn this vision into a reality. However, most organizations today are building their data infrastructure to focus solely on addressing immediate business needs vs. a platform capable of quickly adapting emerging technologies to address future ...
We are given a desktop platform with Java 8 or Java 9 installed and seek to find a way to deploy high-performance Java applications that use Java 3D and/or Jogl without having to run an installer. We are subject to the constraint that the applications be signed and deployed so that they can be run in a trusted environment (i.e., outside of the sandbox). Further, we seek to do this in a way that does not depend on bundling a JRE with our applications, as this makes downloads and installations rat...
Widespread fragmentation is stalling the growth of the IIoT and making it difficult for partners to work together. The number of software platforms, apps, hardware and connectivity standards is creating paralysis among businesses that are afraid of being locked into a solution. EdgeX Foundry is unifying the community around a common IoT edge framework and an ecosystem of interoperable components.
DX World EXPO, LLC, a Lighthouse Point, Florida-based startup trade show producer and the creator of "DXWorldEXPO® - Digital Transformation Conference & Expo" has announced its executive management team. The team is headed by Levent Selamoglu, who has been named CEO. "Now is the time for a truly global DX event, to bring together the leading minds from the technology world in a conversation about Digital Transformation," he said in making the announcement.
In this strange new world where more and more power is drawn from business technology, companies are effectively straddling two paths on the road to innovation and transformation into digital enterprises. The first path is the heritage trail – with “legacy” technology forming the background. Here, extant technologies are transformed by core IT teams to provide more API-driven approaches. Legacy systems can restrict companies that are transitioning into digital enterprises. To truly become a lead...
Digital Transformation (DX) is not a "one-size-fits all" strategy. Each organization needs to develop its own unique, long-term DX plan. It must do so by realizing that we now live in a data-driven age, and that technologies such as Cloud Computing, Big Data, the IoT, Cognitive Computing, and Blockchain are only tools. In her general session at 21st Cloud Expo, Rebecca Wanta explained how the strategy must focus on DX and include a commitment from top management to create great IT jobs, monitor ...
"Cloud Academy is an enterprise training platform for the cloud, specifically public clouds. We offer guided learning experiences on AWS, Azure, Google Cloud and all the surrounding methodologies and technologies that you need to know and your teams need to know in order to leverage the full benefits of the cloud," explained Alex Brower, VP of Marketing at Cloud Academy, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clar...
The IoT Will Grow: In what might be the most obvious prediction of the decade, the IoT will continue to expand next year, with more and more devices coming online every single day. What isn’t so obvious about this prediction: where that growth will occur. The retail, healthcare, and industrial/supply chain industries will likely see the greatest growth. Forrester Research has predicted the IoT will become “the backbone” of customer value as it continues to grow. It is no surprise that retail is ...