There is already a vaccine for the cyberattacks pandemic
One of the many consequences of the global epidemic of covid-19 has been the exponential growth of teleworking in millions of organizations around the world. Beyond the months of confinement, remote work has come to stay permanently in our lives. It is demonstrated by the figures and the forecasts of the companies: up to 74% will continue working remotely as soon as the pandemic is overcome and returns to normality, according to a recent study by the consulting firm Gartner.
The fact that employees work from outside the office has not only transformed the work model, but has also been a major challenge at a technological level. It happened a year ago, when in a matter of a few days thousands of businesses adapted their operational processes in order to maintain business activity. Some had the necessary tools to confront this unprecedented situation with guarantees, but many others had to resort to last-minute solutions to stay afloat.
The truth is that today employees are working more and more dispersed. The health situation has shown that it is possible to connect to companies’ technology platforms from anywhere and at any time, with the additional security challenges that this entails. Your organization’s network and data must remain protected at all times, regardless of where each person connects. The same goes for the resources we use to work, from office servers and cloud-based applications – like Office 365 or Salesforce – to public or private cloud environments on AWS or Microsoft Azure. The key is always to ensure safe work from any location, using any device and accessing resources wherever they are.
Increase in cyber attacks
In this new context, cybercriminals have taken advantage of the circumstances to multiply their attacks. The Threat Report 2021 from Sophos reveals that more than half of companies have suffered cyber attacks in the last year. Cybersecurity has become a priority, as criminals take advantage of any open loophole to gain access to companies’ corporate systems and data, thereby perpetrating their misdeeds. All of this has brought with it the need for stricter and more transparent security.
In the early moments of the pandemic, VPN (Virtual Private Network) technology was the perfect solution to teleworking: it allowed employees of any company to connect to their networks and resources remotely. The problem with VPN is that it entails a series of limitations both for users and for the IT department of different corporations. “You have to log in and authenticate. And, once inside, you are for better or for worse, because generally the VPN connection offers access to everything “, explains Alberto Rodas, Presales Engineer of Sophos for Spain and Portugal. “It may happen that you have a malware and spread it to the rest of the organization through this connection ”.
Alberto Rodas, Sophos Presales Engineer for Spain and Portugal, warns of the risks of conventional VPN: “It may happen that you have a malware and spread it to the rest of the organization through this connection “
They are not the only loopholes in this technology, as not all types of VPN work with the same guarantees. “And the IT team must deploy its configurations, its users… It can generate problems to include new personnel, for example. It is a tool that works well when a few people work remotely, but when teleworking is massive it is very complicated to manage ”, adds this expert.
Continuous user verification
Faced with this situation, more and more companies are opting for ZTNA (Zero Trust Network Access) connections, a perfect alternative to VPN that allows users to connect to corporate resources from any location, simply and transparently. ZTNA is based on the principle of zero trust (Zero Trust) with the user, who is constantly verified to ensure maximum security in all connection processes.
The ZTNA solution takes advantage of multi-factor authentication – by sending one-time codes that verify the credentials of the user and an identity provider – to prevent passwords from being a source of danger in the event of a cyberattack. Once the identity is confirmed, it validates the health and compliance of the device to ensure that it is registered with the company network, updated and properly protected.
The Sophos ZTNA solution protects any network application, whether it is hosted on a company’s local network, in the public cloud or elsewhere
From all this information, ZTNA is able to make decisions based on security policies to determine the access of that device and that user, and grant the corresponding privileges to the network applications.
From this premise, the solution Sophos ZTNA protects any network application, whether it is hosted on a company’s local network, in the public cloud or in any other space. The tool provides all kinds of coverage, from access to the remote desktop protocol (RDP) to shared files on the network, applications such as Jira, wiki, source code repositories, assistance applications and ticketing …
Although the remote access VPN is still useful, Sophos ZTNA offers a number of additional benefits that result in more effective protection. On the one hand, it means more granular control over who can access certain applications and data. That is, each of the users, devices or applications can be controlled separately based on an individual corporate policy and the level of risk decided by the organization. It also means more security and is easier to implement. Because Sophos ZTNA is managed through the Sophos Central platform, it is easy to enroll new users or adapt to a changing work environment. In addition, it is more transparent to end users, to whom it provides a frictionless connection.
Sophos protects more than 400,000 organizations of all sizes in more than 150 countries from the worst cyber threats. Powered by SophosLabs, a global threat intelligence and data science team, Sophos cloud-native and AI-enhanced solutions protect endpoints (laptops, servers and mobile devices) and networks against the evolution of cybercriminal tactics and techniques, including automated breaches and active adversary attacks, the ransomware, the exploits, data exfiltration and phishing, among other aggressions.
The cloud-based platform, Sophos Central, integrates the portfolio of the best Sophos products, from the solution to endpoint Intercept X to Firewall XG, in a single Synchronized Security system. All of these products are exclusively available through a global channel of more than 53,000 partners and Managed Service Providers (MSPs). Sophos also makes its innovative business technologies available to home users through Sophos Home.