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Contributor:
Mark Austin
December 15th, 2011

Privilege Guard 3.0 Sneak Peek

As we approach the end of 2011, the Avecto product development team have been busy putting the finishing touches to Privilege Guard 3.0 (Edit: now Defendpoint), along with two brand new modules for Privilege Guard – the Privilege Guard Reporting Pack and the Privilege Guard McAfee ePO Integration Pack. On the run up to Christmas we’ll be giving you a sneak preview of all this exciting new technology, which you can get your hands on at the start of the New Year.

First up is Privilege Guard 3.0, with a new look management console that is both striking to look at and wonderfully intuitive. As you move beyond the obvious visual enhancements, you will find full search capabilities, which allow you to quickly locate policy items and navigate to them with ease.

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When privileges start to ‘creep’…

Bad privilege management is as dangerous as none

Utilizing tools native to the operating system to convert Windows networks to an environment in which administrator-level privileges are the justified exception rather than the rule is often mistakenly seen as a discrete destination when it is really part of a long, ongoing, complicated journey.

It’s an easy mistake to make. Many organizations find themselves simultaneously running up to three significant generations of Windows; XP, Windows 7 and Windows 8, plus one or two way points in between such as Vista and Service Packs. Each one of these comes with slightly different ways to manage standard and administrator accounts. These include the evolving controls in User Account Control (UAC) and related technologies such as XP’s prototype whitelisting Software Restriction Policies (SRP) and 7′s AppLocker.

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Migrating? Put admin rights in the past!

Do you give local administrative rights to all your users?  Or maybe it’s just to the executives or laptop users?  As companies now have under a year to move away from Windows XP, this is the perfect, once-in-a-decade opportunity to make your environment more secure, raise user productivity and make the lives of your support personnel easier.

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How Effective are Your Defenses?

Keeping malware off your network is like a never-ending game of space invaders, except that you need more than one weapon to ward off criminals from cyberspace. But deploying the right security solutions in the right places is crucial if your lines of resistance are to be effective.

A report published in November 2012 by NSS Labs, Cybercrime Kill Chain vs. Defense Effectiveness – subversion of layered security, analyses the effectiveness of security systems, concluding that many attacks successfully penetrate layered security defenses. Network edge firewalls, intrusion protection systems (IPS), endpoint protection suites/antivirus and browser protection, as commonly deployed by large organizations, all fail to live up to expectations.

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Digital usage policies and the ‘new’ desktop

Every admin knows it – written policies aren’t worth the paper they are written on.

The PC desktop is changing, so fast that what used to confidently be called the ‘desktop’ is undergoing the sort of rapid evolution bound to throw up new and unfamiliar security challenges.

Technological developments such as smartphones, tablets and mobile operating systems can be wheeled out to partly explain this change. However, it is to the humble user rather than computer architectures of network topologies we must pay the closest attention if we are to understand how the business desktop will be reshaped from the ground up over the next decade.

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Software Licensing for Virtual Desktop Infrastructures and Terminal Servers

Many organizations waste thousands every year on unused software licenses. This occurs for a number of reasons, but not least due to the complexity of Microsoft licensing programmes and the need to track license usage across an ever changing IT infrastructure. With the growing popularization of virtual desktop infrastructures (VDIs), monitoring license usage has become more challenging as virtual machines (VMs) can be dynamically created for one-off applications, and software installed on-demand from app stores.

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