Why endpoint security is more important than ever

Remote working has made client endpoints the focus of security like never before

Woman typing at desk surrounded by three monitors

Ever since computers became connected to public networks they have been under threat from external attack. But at least when most employees were working on premises, companies had considerable control over what was allowed into the internal network. Now, in the post-COVID world, it looks like many more workers will be operating remotely, making endpoint security much more important than ever before.

Many employees around the world have spent a year forced to operate from home, and many will continue to do so after the pandemic has abated. Global Workplace Analytics, for example, predicts that 25%-30% of employees will still be working multiple days a week from home by the end of 2021. If there is anything positive that can be taken from COVID, it is that remote working can be productive.

But there has been an inevitable downside of the mass adoption of remote working. Cybercriminals have realized that remote workers are no longer as well protected as on-premises office workers. The FBI had reported that complaints of cybercrime had already increased fourfold by April 2020 compared to prior months, and Interpol had already registered a huge increase in cybercrime during the pandemic by August 2020. This trend has continued since then, with pandemic and vaccination fears providing fertile ground for all manner of phishing attacks. According to research by YouGov, 54% of IT decision makers have seen a higher number of phishing attacks, and 45% saw evidence of printers being compromised as attack points.

A major problem is how the line is blurred between work and personal lives when working from home. According to YouGov research, 76% of office workers felt this blurring of their lives, 46% used their work laptop for personal activities, and 30% even let someone else use their work device – perhaps a child doing schoolwork from home. While the employee might be conscientious about avoiding phishing attacks, other family members won’t be, and all it takes is one lapse and a system could be compromised. You can’t put all the blame on employees working from home for this, though. Instead, it puts the onus on the device they are using itself. Research by YouGov has shown that 91% of IT decision makers believe endpoint security is at least as important as network security. 

For example, once a system used for work has been infected, it can be used to mount attacks on other employees within the company. The email contacts address book could be accessed and phishing emails sent from the infected system. Other employees will be far more susceptible if they think messages are coming from a legitimate source within the company, which could then mean the whole workforce becomes infected, enabling a mass ransomware attack. Printers could also be susceptible to internal attack once cyber-criminals have access to computers that provide remote access.

This is where a comprehensive solution like HP Wolf Security can pay huge dividends. HP Wolf Security provides multiple layers of hardware-enforced security that operates below the level of the operating system, within the operating system, and above that with applications. The newly integrated HP Wolf Security portfolio is categorized by:

  • HP Wolf Security for Home* includes a set of built-in security features for select consumer PCs as well as HP Wolf Essential Security software and services. HP Wolf Essential Security is included on select home printers.
  • HP Wolf Security for Business** includes a portfolio of hardware-enforced security features, included with every business PC purchase, designed for businesses of all sizes. 
  • HP Wolf Pro Security, devices, software and services† for small to mid-sized businesses.
  • HP Wolf Enterprise Security, devices, software and services for enterprises and government.††

These automated systems drastically reduce the attack surfaces available to cyber-criminals, presenting far fewer opportunities for them to compromise the systems used by remote workers.

HP Wolf Security isn’t just about the endpoints on their own, but how they fit into a secure ecosystem. With a suite of remote worker systems enabled by HP Wolf Pro or Enterprise Security, IT managers can benefit from powerful analytical and heuristic predictive tools, on top of device-level protection. Threats like ransomware code will be isolated and contained before they deploy within a micro-virtual machine container. While isolated, they do no harm to the endpoint, but can run their course so the full malware kill-chain can be shared with other devices – further hardening the infrastructure and reducing the overall attack surface. Whether self-managed or fully managed, HP Wolf Security can provide the expertise to identify risks and improve an organization’s security position. These facilities include malware prevention, threat containment, and identity protection. With these capabilities on remote worker endpoint systems, they can operate with as much safety as employees in the office.

There will be a lot more employees working from home post pandemic, and that has potential to be a positive change. Employees can more easily fit work and life together, without any noticeable drop in productivity. With the right computing safety precautions, such as HP Wolf Security, one of the biggest downsides of remote working can be mitigated. That way, this brave new world of more flexible working can be a win-win for employer and employee alike.

Learn more about HP Wolf

From the maker of the world’s most secure PCs‡ and Printers‡‡, HP Wolf Security is a new breed§ of endpoint security. HP’s portfolio of hardware-enforced security and endpoint-focused security services are designed to help organizations safeguard PCs, printers, and people from circling cyber predators. HP Wolf Security provides comprehensive endpoint protection and resiliency that starts at the hardware level and extends across software and services. For more information, visit www.hp.com/wolf

*HP Wolf Security for Home is planned to be available for select HP Consumer PCs in Spring 2022 and HP Wolf Essential Security Services will be sold separately.

**HP Wolf Security for Business requires Windows 10, includes various HP security features and is available on HP Pro, Elite and Workstation products. See product details for included security features and OS requirement.

†HP Wolf Pro Security Service is sold separately. For full system requirements, please visit http://www.hpdaas.com/requirements. HP services are governed by the applicable HP terms and conditions of service provided or indicated to Customer at the time of purchase. Customer may have additional statutory rights according to applicable local laws, and such rights are not in any way affected by the HP terms and conditions of service, or the HP Limited Warranty provided with your HP Product. For full system requirements, please visit www.hpdaas.com/requirements

HP Wolf Pro Security is included on select pro level printers.

††HP Wolf Enterprise Security is an optional service and may include offerings such as HP Sure Click Enterprise and HP Sure Access Enterprise.  HP Sure Click Enterprise requires Windows 8 or 10 and Microsoft Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Chromium or Firefox are supported. Supported attachments include Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint) and PDF files, when Microsoft Office or Adobe Acrobat are installed.

HP Wolf Enterprise Security is included on select enterprise level printers.

‡Based on HP’s unique and comprehensive security capabilities at no additional cost among vendors on HP Elite PCs with Windows and 8th Gen and higher Intel® processors or AMD Ryzen™ 4000 processors and higher; HP ProDesk 600 G6 with Intel® 10th Gen and higher processors; and HP ProBook 600 with AMD Ryzen™ 4000 or Intel® 11th Gen processors and higher.

‡‡HP’s most advanced embedded security features are available on HP Enterprise and HP Managed devices with HP FutureSmart firmware 4.5 or above. Claim based on HP review of 2021 published features of competitive in-class printers. Only HP offers a combination of security features to automatically detect, stop, and recover from attacks with a self-healing reboot, in alignment with NIST SP 800-193 guidelines for device cyber resiliency. For a list of compatible products, visit: hp.com/go/PrintersThatProtect. For more information, visit: hp.com/go/PrinterSecurityClaims.

§HP Security is now HP Wolf Security. Security features vary by platform, please see product data sheet for details.

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