Does your service desk use accounts that have workstation admin credentials to support users? If so, your service desk staff are “privileged” users. If those credentials are stolen or compromised, they can be used by an attacker to move laterally across your network in mere hours or minutes. Security professionals have often overlooked help desks as privileged users, but more and more are looking to lock down these accounts or take privileges away. But admin credentials are crucial for service desks to be productive.

So what exactly is a privileged account? They are:

 

If these accounts are so crucial, why are they also so problematic? Here’s a few reasons:

 

All of the above-mentioned points make privileged accounts the prize for hackers. With cyber breaches showing no sign of slowing down, targeted attacks on corporate IT networks have increased in scale and public visibility. A hacker’s main objective is to bypass perimeter security, by stealing legitimate credentials (your privileged credentials) to gain access to your machine, and then ultimately move laterally across the network.


Given that privileged accounts are a main target, how can your organization balance both productivity and security? Here’s a few tips:  



For a closer look into how to protect privileged accounts, and how Bomgar’s solutions can help you secure service desk credentials without affecting productivity, check out this webcast recording.