Data Loss Prevention (DLP) is a security component that monitors and intercepts the extraction of sensitive data from defined systems on your network. ‘Endpoint DLP’ extends these monitoring and protection capabilities to sensitive data stored on user endpoint devices.

An efficient Endpoint DLP solution secures endpoints to prevent data leakage, misuse, loss or theft. DLP agents are installed on protected devices, including laptops, computers, servers, cloud repositories, and mobile phones.

Data Loss Protection (DLP)

Data Loss Protection (DLP) allows businesses to detect data loss and prevent the illicit transfer of data outside the organisation. It also helps protect against the destruction of Personally Identifiable Data (PII). 

By allowing organisations to bolster data security, they can comply with General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) regulations. 

Data can reside on devices and locations throughout the digital environment, including endpoints, local networks, remote sites and the cloud. Securing sensitive data estate-wide requires a granular solution such as DLP.

To defend against ransomware attacks, at Securus, we go beyond the traditional DLP model by adding immutable backup technology. That is, the files cannot be encrypted, deleted, or otherwise modified in any way. Immutable backups ensure data can’t be tampered with or removed.

What Is Endpoint DLP?

What Is Endpoint DLP?

Endpoint Data Loss Prevention (Endpoint DLP) extends the activity monitoring and protection features of DLP to sensitive data stored on laptops, tablets, mobile phones and even IoT devices. Once the device is ‘onboarded’ into the solution, an activity explorer gathers information about how users are using and accessing sensitive visible.

In general, Endpoint DLP performs the following actions:

  • Monitors all network endpoints to prevent data leakage, misuse, or loss, including laptops, tablets, and mobile phones.
  • Classifies regulatory, proprietary, confidential, or business-critical data, which streamlines compliance requirements
  • Tracks data on endpoints, whether on and off the network.
  • Data encryption can also be part of your Endpoint DLP solution.

Why Is Endpoint DLP Important?

More vulnerabilities emerge as your remote workforce grows, making Endpoint DLP a critical facet of any secure platform. Because it halts the extraction of sensitive data, organisations use DLP for internal and external security, plus regulatory compliance.

Because data is an invaluable asset to any company, protecting it is paramount. Endpoint DLP is one solution that enables organisations to protect sensitive data, regardless of the endpoint’s physical location.

With DLP deployed at each endpoint, admin teams can monitor sensitive content, prevent data leakage from storage devices, and safeguard data stored on a device outside the network. The Mircosoft Endpoint EDR or Fortinet EPP solutions we offer can boost this security still further.

8 Essential Features Of Endpoint DLP

8 Essential Features Of Endpoint DLP

Endpoint DLP protects data in use and at rest using predefined policies for data being accessed and used by authorised users. It blocks any activity that violates established usage policies. Furthermore, it scans endpoints for any sensitive data stored on them and applies additional security measures should users mishandle that data. 

1. Endpoint DLP Monitoring

A modern Endpoint DLP solution detects any unusual data movement in and around your organisation’s digital environment. Your security team can be alerted to and identify sensitive data in motion by using data classification labels.

Endpoint DLP allows your admin team to monitor, audit, and manage the actions users take involving sensitive data physically stored on their local devices. For example, it can detect when a user tries to upload sensitive data to a restricted website or cloud service. DLP will block the action and can even redirect the user to an approved alternative.

2. File Copy Protection & Auditing

File Copy Protection & Auditing

One of the features of DLP that Securus Communications strongly recommends to our clients is copy protection and auditing; When a user tries to copy information from a protected item and paste it elsewhere. 

Most importantly, Endpoint DLP identifies when the user attempts to copy an item to a USB or a shared network drive, printer, remote desktop, or Bluetooth device.

3. DLP Policies and Procedures

DLP policies outline how an organisation protects and shares its data. Policies include rules and procedures that the enterprise can implement throughout its network. For example, Endpoint DLP may prohibit the distribution of information outside of the network. 

It can also track user access and place restrictions on selected user types. We can help you set up such policies and procedures to protect your network from potential internal and external threats.

4. Simplified Provisioning

Endpoint DLP configurations include pre-set templates for creating DLP policies, editing DLP rules, and enabling those DLP policies across the enterprise. If desired, the security team can customise those templates to make provisioning a breeze.

5. DLP Detection, Response, and Analysis

Endpoint DLP quickly identifies any irregular data activity and expedites incident response actions by tracking and reporting data access and other movements throughout the network. Finally, DLP contextualises high-risk activities and behaviours so that security teams can instigate additional prevention measures.

6. Common File Types DLP Protects

Common File Types DLP Protects

Endpoint DLP supports monitoring a wide variety of file types and even audits file type activities even if there is no policy match. Administrators can modify the audit setting and even shut it off for any device(s) within the DLP global settings.

The following are common file types protected by DLP. It monitors activities based on MIME type, capturing activities even if the file extension changes.

  • Excel files
  • PDF files
  • PowerPoint files
  • Word files
  • .c files
  • .class files
  • .cpp files
  • .cs files
  • .csv files
  • .h files
  • .java files
  • .rtf files
  • .tsv files
  • .txt files

7. Efficient Onboarding and Offboarding

Efficient Onboarding and Offboarding

At Securus, we recommend that every organisation have onboarding and offboarding procedures for employee devices to protect data and technology assets. Such policies also aid in maintaining regulatory compliance and contractual requirements. The most effective way to handle the technical aspects of onboarding and offboarding is through DLP tools.

Onboarding and offboarding are accomplished using scripts downloaded from the device management centre. Securus can help you set up custom scripts for each deployment method, including group policies, local scripts, and Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) onboarding scripts for non-persistent machines, etc.

8. Define Data Sensitivity Types For Granular Compliance

Among other types of data, endpoint DLP allows you to define and protect several types of information for greater compliance:

– Personally Identifiable Information (PII)

PII is data that identifies an individual and includes end-users email and mailing addresses, Social Security numbers, login IDs, IP addresses, social media posts, geolocation, and biometric information. 

Endpoint DLP detects data loss and illicit data transfer outside the organisation, and it also blocks attempts to destroy PII. By protecting PII, DLP also aids enterprises in complying with data security regulations.

– UK Data Protection & HIPA Compliance

The UK Data Protection Act and the US HIPAA equivalent sets extensive data security requirements for all businesses that access, store, or process protected health information. They both define policies and procedures for maintaining the privacy and security of health information.

– Intellectual Property (IP)

Your organisation likely has critical Intellectual Property (IP), trade, or even state secrets that would put your organisation’s reputation and financial health at risk if they were lost or stolen. Endpoint DLP uses context-based classification to classify IP, whether it exists in structured or unstructured forms. With DLP controls and policies in place, your security team can protect Intellectual Property data.

Difference Between Endpoint DLP and Network DLP

Difference Between Endpoint DLP and Network DLP

The terms DLP and Endpoint DLP are often used interchangeably. However, there are differences between the two. 

With automatic encryption, DLP (aka Network DLP) secures data transfer over the network, web application, and email. Network DLP also monitors and reports on this data as it travels through the network, which provides security teams visibility regarding how data is being used and who is using it.

Endpoint DLP tools protect data in motion and at rest on user endpoint devices such as laptops, tablets and mobile phones. Agents installed on these endpoint devices enforce pre-set policies for data access and protection.

DLP tools use encryption to secure data transmitted to portable devices as well. Lastly, endpoints are scanned for any sensitive data stored locally on them, and DLP acts immediately if the data is mishandled.

Conclusion

With cybercrime on the rise, Endpoint DLP plays a pivotal role in protecting data-at-rest and data-in-motion on some of the most vulnerable areas of digital security, network endpoints. 

The digital workplace has expanded to include work-from-anywhere mobile devices, each able to store an increasingly large amount of sensitive data that must be protected. 

Several vendors such as Fortinet, Microsoft, McAfee, and Checkpoint offer Endpoint DLP solutions to fortify your endpoints and protect sensitive data from loss, misuse, and unlawful misappropriation. At Securus Communications, we can help you get the most suitable Endpoint DLP solution for your situation.

From anti-malware, anti-phishing, SEO poisoning, and 2FA to SASE and cloud-based air-gap immutable backup storage, Securus has a security solution to suit your requirement and budget. If you would like to discuss your network security requirements in more detail with one of our cyber security professionals, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

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