What is virtual desktop infrastructure security?
Virtual desktop infrastructure security is technology and best practices that are employed to secure virtual desktops. They work by delivering a desktop image to an operating system over a network to an endpoint device. This device is usually a smartphone, traditional PC or client device. VDI utilizes virtual machines to manage these virtual desktops. A user of a virtual desktop can connect anywhere, anytime, and from any device.
Virtual desktop infrastructure is an ideal solution for organizations that employ a hybrid or remote workforce. While virtual desktops enhance mobility and remote access to applications, they can also raise serious security concerns. An insecure device can result in stolen passwords and compromised user desktop sessions, leading to ransomware and malware attacks. This is why VDI calls for the usage of a robust VDI security architecture.
What is virtual desktop infrastructure security architecture?
Having a high-grade security architecture is critical to minimizing the desktop security vulnerabilities common to virtual environments. Here are some key components of VDI security architecture.
• Real time compliance monitoring: When an organization adheres to regulations from GDPR, HIPAA, and PCI, they can avoid costly regulatory fines down the road. When using VDI security architecture, real time compliance monitoring can alert the organization of anomalies and sudden changes in the infrastructure that stem from potential compliance changes. Having automated alerts ensures that there is quick action to preserve the integrity of the data and resources of the virtual desktop.
• Vulnerability scanning: Internal IT teams cannot be expected to keep an eye on their internal systems all the time. Vulnerability scanning can take away the need for human intervention by automating remedial action when problematic activity occurs.
• Data loss prevention: Data is a must have for all organizations. It must be protected and one way to do this is by encrypting virtual machine files, virtual disk files, and core dump files. When an organization’s virtual machine is encrypted, the organization can better protect sensitive data and meet compliance requirements.
What are the benefits of a cloud based virtual desktop infrastructure migration?
When a business makes the decision to move to cloud based virtual desktop infrastructure, they are able to take advantage of all its built-in security features. This migration eliminates the risks associated with traditional desktop virtualization. Best practices that come along with virtual desktop infrastructure security are as follows.
• Conditional access to users: These are access controls that are based on signals such as group memberships, device types, and IP addresses to enforce policies.
• Multifactor authentication (MFA): This requires users to verify their identities to access sensitive data. MFA is consistent with logging into an application repeatedly that houses sensitive data. When employees follow these virtual desktop infrastructure security best practices, they can help their organization secure identities, data, and access to their VDI.
• Endpoint security: Endpoint security offers built in protection against malware and other significant threats for all of your endpoints.
• Audit logs: These records are used to gain insight into user and admin activities.
• Application restriction: This mitigates security threats by decreasing what applications users are allowed to access while using certain software.
Virtual desktop infrastructure security benefits
While many technology related solutions require additional investment, VDI security can bolster an organization’s security posture. Here are some examples of the benefits of virtual desktop infrastructure security.
• Disaster recovery: Virtual desktops can be hosted in a secure company data center. This means IT teams can quickly move a virtual machine to another host if the current one experiences a hardware failure.
• Data security: Employees are less likely to fall victim to data theft or stolen devices if centralized data is on the premises or in the cloud as opposed to being on an endpoint device.
• IT control: Internal IT teams can enable or disable features such as USB access and print capabilities based on a wide range of variables that include role, device, and even IP addresses. This allows for consistent policy-based control.
The potential risks associated with virtual desktop infrastructure
Although VDI has several advantages, there are potential security risks that come along with it. This is why it is essential to have virtual desktop infrastructure security in place and why your organization should always employ best practices. The risks associated with VDI are as follows.
• Unauthorized access: Virtual desktop infrastructure is designed to work with remote users. This means data can be accessed from anywhere if the user has the correct credentials. There has been a significant increase in credential suffering attacks and a rise in the number of data breaches. With these increases, the potential for a hacker to gain access to a virtual desktop is much higher.
• Centralized infrastructure: When a workforce is reliant upon the VDI connection to gain access to the systems to do their jobs, it opens a door for the connection broker to become the victim of a DoS attack (denial of service attack). A Denial-of-Service (DoS) attack is an attack meant to shut down a machine or network, making it inaccessible to its users.
• Minimal resources: The virtual machines used in VDI are designed to use a minimal amount of processing and storage. This can make it difficult to run conventional endpoint security solutions which can potentially expose them to compromise.
Choosing a managed service provider that can set up virtual desktop infrastructure and security
Tekscape can give your employees the best virtualized desktops on the market for better workflow and stronger synergy, no matter where your team works. Enable frictionless experiences across any workspace and give access to apps and data they need to get the job done. No matter where your team works, make sure your team can connect to business essentials to get the job done. With Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI) employees have no need to save company data on a personal device.
To protect and serve clients with customized and innovative IT solutions by delivering high quality and secure technologies.
Allow our clients, through exceptional service, to meet and exceed their business goals.
Tekscape is committed to providing proactive, responsive, and timely managed IT services support for our clients. We start with our comprehensive new client onboarding process designed to get your business up-and-running on our monitoring and management tools with as little disruption as possible. For over 15 years, we’ve successfully onboarded simple and complex IT infrastructure supporting multiple users including:
• Servers and Systems
• Collaboration (Phone, Video)
• Desktop, Email and Endpoints
• Microsoft Office 365 & Azure
• Security & Disaster Recovery
As your trusted partner, Tekscape becomes your go-to-guide for technology best practices aligned with your industry and your unique business goals. Our technology solutions can help reduce operational costs, eliminate downtime and decrease overall IT spend.