What is an Endpoint Device?
Anyone who takes network security seriously must have, at some point, come across the term endpoint devices. But what exactly is an endpoint device? This article will provide an answer and list various endpoint devices.
Summary: Endpoint devices are WAN or LAN-connected gadgets that communicate across networks. In broad terms, these machines can include any device linked to a system. These serve as a user endpoint in a distributed network. In more specific terms, an endpoint device includes hardware connected to the internet on an IP or TCP network. Examples include PCs, laptops, phones, tablets, servers and much more.
How Do Endpoint Devices Work?
Endpoint devices are an integral part of endpoint security. Endpoint security refers to protecting your mobile device, desktop computer, or other endpoints from cyber security attacks.
Endpoints often provide perfect gateways to your organizational network, which can be exploited by intruders. Endpoint security minimizes this risk by shielding the points from criminals. It examines your network or enterprise system, processes, and files, for malicious and suspicious activity. If it notices anything fishy, it can alert your security managers so they can react on time and protect your data.
One of the most impressive features of endpoint security is that it can be installed on numerous devices. Whether you use smart phones, tablets, laptops, or servers, this strategy helps keep malicious users from infiltrating your network with malware.
It can also be deployed alongside other monitoring and detection tactics to mark suspicious actions and prevent data breaches.
There are three ways of organizing endpoint protection:
The on-premise or on-location approach typically involves data on host computers that function as hubs for your management consoles. These devices communicate with your endpoints via different channels to help patch up security gaps.
This strategy can work great, but it has a few drawbacks. Primarily, it’s a legacy system. It’s not as advanced as modern solutions since network owners can only manage it within a limited perimeter.
If you want to ensure comprehensive security, consider setting up cloud-based endpoint devices. They allow you to manage and monitor nearly all network types in your cloud. Under this arrangement, endpoints are connected to your network remotely.
Cloud-based solutions are superior to on-location endpoint security due to their greater scope. You can look past traditional perimeters and enhance your administrator reach.
Another way to safeguard your data assets through endpoints is to set up a hybrid network. It combines cloud and on-location technologies.
The strategy has become more prevalent in recent years due to an uptick in remote workers. Organizations have streamlined their legacy systems and integrated with cloud-based endpoints to keep sensitive data intact.
Optimized endpoint security has emerged as a result of such combinations and contains the following software to combat unauthorized access:
- Machine learning that detects threats
- Firewall to safeguard against hostiles
- Email gateways to reduce the risk of phishing
- Insider protection to neutralize threats from within your network
- Advanced anti-malware and antivirus to remove malware on your operating systems and endpoint devices
- Proactive security for safe internet browsing
- Disk encryption to shield company data
Examples of Endpoint Device
As previously discussed, endpoints are physical devices that can be linked to your network. The most common examples are laptops, mobile phones, and desktop computers.
However, the list keeps growing and now includes many non-traditional gadgets that protect your network resources and limit access:
- Mobile phones
- Desktop computers
- Health trackers
- Navigation systems
- Point of sale systems
If a device can connect to the internet, it can be a fully functional part of your endpoint protection.
Restrict Access to Your Network with Robust Endpoints
You shouldn’t take your system security lightly. Intruders lurk behind every corner, hoping to catch you off-guard and steal your data.
Various endpoint devices can help you set up a bulletproof network. They detect suspicious traffic according to specific criteria. Once they alert you to unusual behavior, you can react on time and keep your organization unharmed.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do organizations manage endpoints?
Many companies opt for software as a service (SaaS) platforms to host endpoints. They’re managed by third parties and allow owners to reduce costs while receiving regular updates.
How do you maximize endpoint protection?
The only way to capitalize on endpoint devices is to limit access. This means you should only allow administrators to adjust security controls and not all employees.
What happens if criminals infiltrate an endpoint device?
Data loss isn’t the only consequence of endpoint breaches. Intruders can also overwhelm your servers with unwanted web traffic to prevent other users from regaining access.
Author: Tibor Moes
Founder & Chief Editor at SoftwareLab
Tibor is a Dutch engineer and entrepreneur. He has tested security software since 2014.
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