Security: The Next Step in Remote Management
Written on May 30, 2012.
There are a lot of devices out there that are connected to the Internet. Laptops, Ultrabooks, desktops, tablets, smartphones, and cars, just to name a few. There are even a few refrigerators that are connected to the Internet. And most of these devices are pulling information from or storing it in the Cloud.
By 2015, Intel Corporation expects that more than 3 billion connected users and 15 billion connected devices will be driving more than 1,500 exabytes of cloud traffic. Meanwhile, IDC estimates that about 20 percent of all digital data – or 1,400 exabytes – will be stored or processed in the cloud.
That’s a lot of information moving around, but more importantly, that’s a lot of devices to manage. With the dispersed workforce and client base, along with the sheer number of devices, it is critical that MSPs and IT consultants be able to manage, remediate, and repair devices remotely. Remote management software like Kaseya, LabTech, Level Platforms, N-able, and Spiceworks, let you see and manage the devices, the apps, and the software, and often repair many devices remotely.
But there’s an X-factor that we don’t talk about much: security – how do you handle security and remote manageability? Sure, there’s pushing out patches and that does a lot to keep malware at bay. But the explosive growth in devices, including the rise of BYOD (Bring your own device), is creating new challenges for security. These include: complex identity management in which employees are managing – on average – 12 user name/password combinations, new forms of malware, and a growing range of online attacks that require new and improved levels of security.
Intel is focusing intensively on hardware-assisted security to create a robust and tightly integrated security stack on each system, beginning with the bottom-most layer of silicon and hardware, and working up. Anti-malware prevention, detection, and remediation typically has been handled by software in the operating system, applications, or services layers. But that old approach is no longer adequate, as software layers have become more easily circumvented or corrupted.
The CPU and other hardware components are generally less susceptible to modification or circumvention by malware. The hardware can create “Isolated Execution Environments” where security processes run. The system then employs a combination of hardware-based security functions inside the chip, together with specific security software functions that are explicitly linked to those hardware capabilities. The result: safer computing, less data loss, and happier clients.
Eric Townsend is Director of MSP and SMB Marketing for Intel Corporation. You can contact Eric at firstname.lastname@example.org.