Today’s online business world prioritizes security more than anything else. While some businesses go above and beyond to keep compliant with their industry’s security best practices, others have trouble keeping up, and their network security suffers. Thus, monitoring account security on shared networks is of critical importance for any organization hoping to stay safe.
As reported by a study by Dimension Research, a total of 83 percent of respondents found that managing administrative passwords and accounts is difficult. Considering the importance of administrative accounts and passwords to ensuring the security of organizations, this number is surprising and disconcerting. In other words, businesses already have the systems and security they need put into place, but the execution and enforcement of these systems and best practices is underwhelming.
Here are some more statistics to consider:
- 37 percent of all administrator passwords on mission-critical hardware and software aren’t consistently changed.
- 37 percent of respondents claim that they use shared credentials with other administrators.
- 31 percent claimed that they were unable to consistently identify individuals responsible for administrator activity.
- 75 percent claim to have a default password changing process, but only 26 percent admit to changing passwords frequently.
- 12 percent of respondents claim that they only change passwords in the event of a potential security issue.
- 4 percent never change their admin passwords.
Why do organizations have so much trouble enforcing their account security protocol? In many cases, it’s because organizations put individuals in charge who don’t understand the importance of security best practices. Some businesses, believe it or not, use antiquated solutions to track who logs into administrative accounts (think sign-in sheets or even a Microsoft Excel spreadsheet). These methods are prone to user error and can easily be forged or altered, making them unreliable.
The solution to these problems is relatively simple; take it a two-step approach, including the proper enforcement of username and password best practices, and monitoring your network’s access logs for any strange activity. For passwords, no two users should ever be using the same credentials. Everyone should have their own unique credentials that make use of complex passwords. When we say complex passwords, we mean credentials that make use of upper and lower-case letters, numbers, and symbols. Using an enterprise-level password manager can help your team take full advantage of complex passwords by storing them securely for use when you need them most.
Concerning your network’s access logs, it’s important that you’re keeping your users accountable by monitoring and maintaining who accesses the network, and why. You want to make sure that only authorized personnel are accessing critical information, and if someone accesses your network from a different location, you need to take action to make sure that it doesn’t happen again. By closely monitoring your business’s access logs, you can optimize security while guaranteeing accountability.
For more information about how you can keep your business secure, contact Master Solutions at (630) 495-3830.