When Threats Get Real, Harden Your OS!

In the world of IT security, it seems like all we talk about are threats, threats, threats—and for good reason! There are a wide variety of entry points that a bad actor can take advantage of to compromise your data. If you don’t believe us, take a look at one seemingly overlooked one: the operating system. A huge amount of businesses are running their companies with some to most of their computers operating on the old version of the operating system, which triples the chances of a data breach.

Staying on top of these simple yet necessary updates is a crucial step to IT security, but it’s actually just the first step. (Almost) anyone is capable of updating the Operating System, but that’s not enough to ensure that your OS is running securely enough. “Hardening” your business’s operating systems is one area that getting managed IT services in Orange County can truly help your data stay safe. Here’s a brief selection of how it works:

  1. Unnecessary Programs: If left to our own devices, we all have them: the unused program. The problem is, each program represents a potential entrance point for a hacker. It’s true for everyone, but with mid-sized companies/networks and above, you want to be very careful about the programs you allow on your computers.
  2. Policies in place: if you’ve got a variety of information with different stake holders, a managed service provider can ensure that that is represented on the network, too. Other essential policies may include a minimum password security policy, which also includes required change password timeframes.
  3. Configuration baselines: Basically, establishing configuration baselines is a way for you andyour MSP to detect when abnormal use is happening—by first learning what normal use is. We basically measure certain parameters for a time, and then keep track—this way it becomes possible to spot unsafe use situations and possible threats.
  4. UPDATE!: Finally, yes, it’s very important to update your OS. As new threats become known, programmers will offer updated operating systems that are safer. Download them. Always.

This is an incomplete list, as the threats that Companies and their operating systems face are ever-shifting, and depend on the type of business. What is definitely true is that having a managed service provider in Orange County at your disposal makes it possible to “harden” your OS, and your entire network, in the ways that make sense for your organization.

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