Run more of your Windows users without administrator rights.
While it may not be feasible to remove administrator rights from all users, it is an absolutely achievable goal to continue to improve the percentage of Windows users running without administrator rights year over year for the foreseeable future. Make this your goal for 2012.
Case in point – I talked with a client today that had removed administrator rights from 90% of their users. This is a noteworthy achievement as they are only in the planning process of migrating to Windows 7. They had achieved this on Windows XP and for large numbers of XP-based laptop users. Impressive.
Better yet, I worked with this client on a strategy to move this to 95-97% using the migration to Windows 7 as a catalyst for further improvements – some coming from improvements in the Windows OS (like a new printer driver model) and some coming from the selective use of a third party tool for Windows privilege management.
If you are struggling with malware infestations and are considering switching out vendors, take a look first at removing administrator rights. For Gartner clients, I’ve outlined the best practices for achieving this in this research document.
Remember, if done correctly, removal of administrator rights does not have to equate to “lockdown”.
Category: Beyond Anti-Virus Endpoint Protection Platform Microsoft Security Windows 7 Tags: Best Practices, Beyond Anti-Virus, Endpoint Protection Platform, Lockdown, Microsoft Security, Security No-Brainer, Windows