Windows 10 Security Essentials: What IT Professionals Need to Know

IMG_0974Windows 10 is the latest operating system from Microsoft and one of its goals is to improve security and stability on all Windows devices. It achieves this through a number of security improvements, including the new Edge browser, boot malware protection, full disk encryption and a built-in biometrics software.

Here is what IT professionals need to know about these Windows 10 security essentials:

Living on the Edge: Microsoft's New Edge Browser

As many in the IT space can attest, local installations of Microsoft's previous browser -- Internet Explorer -- presented a plethora of security holes. With the new Edge browser, many of these gaps have been filled by running the browser within the safety of a virtual sandbox and dropping VBScript, Browser Helper Objects, and even removing ActiveX entirely. There are even a slew of additional technologies that Microsoft elected to remove from the new Edge browser in the name of security and stability.

Saying Hello to Windows Hello and Passport

Windows 10 also introduces Windows Hello, a biometric authentication platform that can -- with the help of specialized hardware -- allow a user to authenticate with their Windows 10 device using a touch of a finger or a brief view of their face.

For IT professionals or businesses without access to biometric sensors, Passport in Windows 10 allows for much stronger security by removing the need for passwords to access various sites and applications. Instead of submitting a user-generated password like traditional sites and applications, the Passport will securely authenticate to networks and apps on behalf of the user, without any password entry required.

Built-in Encryption and Boot Protection

Device Guard is a new feature to Windows 10 that provides the ability to lock down a system when an application or piece of malware is executed that isn't among the list of trusted applications -- apps that are signed by the Windows Store, specific vendors, or even your own company.

While Device Guard can be setup to simply alert the user when unsecure apps are detected, Device Guard also has the highly secure capability to work in conjunction with the local hardware to virtualize and isolate the decision-making functionality that determines whether a malware attack is occurring, securely separating that logic from the rest of the Windows 10 system.

In addition to security, there are a number of other reasons why businesses will love Windows 10, including the return of the start menu, a new custom business app store and more.