Dell is diving headfirst into data security, providing its commercial customers with comprehensive data security right out of the box or as a standalone offering. The Round Rock, Texas-based IT systems and services provider launched Dell Data Protection Endpoint Security Suite (DDP ESS), a new product that integrates malware protection, data encryption, security monitoring and compliance controls.
Protecting small and midsized business (SMB) networks is a worthwhile exercise, but one that can ultimately prove fruitless if it's not backed with good PC and device-level protection. "The vast majority of all attacks begin at the endpoint," Brett Hanson, executive director of end user computing software and mobility at Dell, told Small Business Computing.
Once an attacker gleans a victim's credentials, it's only a matter of time before sensitive business data disappears. Persistent hackers aren't the only risk. "A staggering amount of data breaches come from traditional device loss," added Hanson. Lost and stolen devices typically contain a trove of data and access to a company's network.
The Price of Data Breaches
According to Dell's research, it's been a rough year for companies. A whopping 87 percent of organizations have suffered a security breach of some sort in the past 12 months. More than 75 million records have been pilfered from business networks as a result of an estimated 568 breaches. Seventy percent of security breaches can be traced to human causes.
Recovering from a data breach can also prove very costly. A single lost laptop can end up costing a business $49,000, a figure that includes the cost of dealing with breaches. Just one lost or stolen record can end up costing a business $201, up from $188 in just one year.
To help its business customers, from small businesses to large enterprises, avoid racking up these costs, Dell cooked up its own solution.
Dell DDP ESS is the company's homegrown security solution and works with Dell and non-Dell hardware, earning the company the distinction of being the first Tier 1 vendor to develop its own endpoint security software, Dell claims. DDP ESS blends authentication, data encryption and threat protection, and enables businesses to manage it all using a single interface.
Available now, DDP ESS helps protect data by ensuring that users are who they say they are. It supports fingerprint scanners, multi-factor authentication, FIPS 201 smartcards and Windows password resets via a smartphone.
To keep malware and hackers at bay, the solution includes virus and spyware scanning, intrusion prevention, a firewall, and content filtering. Finally, it offers encryption, rendering data useless if it's lost or stolen.
DDP ESS encryption has roots in Dell's acquisition of Credant in 2012. In this implementation, the IT security specialist's technology "allows us to encrypt data versus encrypting devices," said Hanson. In short, the encryption safeguards follow the data independently of the device on which it resides.
It's a seemingly subtle difference that adds up to a powerful data security. This approach gives organizations "a lot more precision and control over said data," Hanson said. One thing that is missing, however, is complexity, he said.
Instead of dedicated point solutions that cause administrators to alt-tab between security applications and can sometimes conflict with each another, DDP ESS consolidates all of its functionality into a single user interface. Settings, status alerts, monitoring, compliance and user management tools are a click away.
Businesses that operate under tough regulatory rules can hit the ground running with a collection of pre-defined compliance policies. Configured by Dell security and regulatory experts, you can use the templates to implement encryption security for healthcare providers (HIPAA) and retailers (PCI DSS), to name just a few.
General pricing was not available as of this writing. See your local Dell dealer for more information.
Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at Small Business Computing. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.
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