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Security in Context: The BeyondTrust Blog

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Bringing you news and commentary on solutions and strategies for protecting critical IT infrastructure in the context of your business.

Reducing Help Desk Costs Is a Least Privilege Benefit

Posted December 15, 2010    Peter McCalister

The problem exists between the keyboard and the chair (PEBKAC).  This is the recurring mantra of most help desk technicians and a leading cause of budget dollars bleeding out of most organizations.  Why, you may ask?  The answer is simple:

  • Users use computers
  • Users are human (usually)
  • Humans make mistakes often: sometimes intentionally, usually accidentally and occasionally indirectly
  • When users have excessive admin rights these mistakes can be very costly

Implementing a privilege identity management solution will effectively limit the potential for impact on these mistakes through a least privilege environment.  One of the most compelling areas will be for the desktop users as there are over 200 documented vulnerabilites in MS Windows. Check out the “3 Ways to Reduce Help Desk Costs” blog for specifics on cost savings, but the intangible benefit that your techs will appreciate the most is the reduction of PEBKAC calls.  With the implementation of a least privilege solution, the user community will only have enough privilege to get their job done but not enough to have a misuse of privilege problem. Now the problem won’t be the user (what lies between the keyboard and the chair), but a genuine technical problem, like installing a print driver.  What price can be put on the sanity of your help desk staff?

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Additional articles

Dark Reading

2014: The Year of Privilege Vulnerabilities

Posted December 18, 2014    Chris Burd

Of the 30 critical-rated Microsoft Security Bulletins this year, 24 involved vulnerabilities where the age-old best practice of “least privilege” could limit the impact of malware and raise the bar of difficulty for attackers.

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Looking back on information security in 2014

Posted December 16, 2014    Dave Shackleford

Dave Shackleford is a SANS Instructor and founder of Voodoo Security. Join Dave for a closer look at the year in security, and learn what you can do to prepare for 2015, with this upcoming webinar. 2014 has been one heck of an insane year for information security professionals. To start with, we’ve been forced…

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patch-tuesday

December 2014 Patch Tuesday

Posted December 9, 2014    BeyondTrust Research Team

This month marks the final Patch Tuesday of 2014. Most of what is being patched this month includes Internet Explorer, Exchange, Office, etc… and continues a trend of the greatest hits collection of commonly attacked Microsoft software. Probably the one thing that broke the mold this month is that for once there is not some…

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