How to close common security holes in administrative security
Administrators are the backbone of organizations. This is something admins know well. These 10 weak points in administrative security can help organizations reduce their vulnerability and minimize the chance of human error.
1. Do not use two accounts
Attackers are looking for admin accounts. An attacker can easily use an admin account to further their exploits if it is compromised. Two different user accounts are required to minimize the possibility of admin accounts being misused. One must be a powerful administrator account or root account and the other a regular, limited-standard user account.
Most admins’ daily tasks are routine. They deal with email, surf the internet, read documentation, communicate through chat, and so on. These activities can be done with a powerful admin account. Your admin account should only be used when absolutely necessary. Even then, you should only use it to launch specific apps or terminal windows and not to log into the entire system. This will reduce the risk of exposure for the most powerful accounts within a system.
2. Execute scripts without coding review
We are all human and seek to reduce complexity and inconvenience. Automating as many tasks as possible is a common way to achieve this goal. This is a great idea because it allows for consistent execution and minimizes human involvement. These automation scripts should be either written in-house or subject to a thorough static and dynamic code review prior to being used.
3. Reusing passwords
There’s no reason to reuse passwords anymore. This has been a security standard for at least three decades. You must use a unique password every time you create a new account. You should never reuse a password. You can find more reasons why you should not reuse a password by looking up your email addresses at spycloud.com or haveibeenpwned.com. Next, search for the same email address at checkusernames.com or knowem.com.
4. After resolving problems, clean up
Administrators are responsible for solving problems. You may not always find the solution to the problem. It may take many steps of trial and error before you find the right solution. There are many ways to fix a problem. These include changing settings, installing new drives, and changing software. These actions can lead to more complicated problems in the future if they are not removed, cleaned up, or rolled back once a solution has been found.
5. Software updates are slowing down
How many times have we heard about a company’s compromise that was possible because they were months behind in installing patches and updates? Don’t be like that company. Keep to your schedule by installing, testing, and approving updates. You want to have critical updates installed within one week, and important updates within one month.
6. All endpoint devices should be considered
Modern networks are not as well defined as they were a few decades ago. Our end-user devices, or endpoints, have changed from workstations to laptops and notebooks to mobile phones, tablets, voice-controlled equipment, IoT, apps, and the cloud. Are you able to see data and make changes on every endpoint device that connects to your internal network? How can you ensure that the environment is protected if you don’t have the right security measures in place?
7. Cloud security is not something that needs to be evaluated
The cloud is being used to replace the sol