When Legacy Apps Dictate Desktop User Privilege Access

BeyondTrust, October 25th, 2010

legacy apps require admin rightsIn an enterprise Windows’ desktop environment, whether a company has 100 or 10,000 seats, the challenge of managing access is fraught with difficulty.

Even if an IT administrator can work out how to circumnavigate Windows User Access Controls or how to set a Group Policy for every application, there will invariably still be a legacy application on which the company relies, which will only run if every user is given administrator status.

In effect one or more legacy application forces the company to leave the entire network vulnerable to either intentional or accidental damage from giving users a higher level of privileged access than they require.

These applications will have been written in-house, or by a third party provider, to meet the bespoke needs of the company – and yet without recognising the security risks and compliance headache caused by leaving desktop access wide open.

Equally rife, is the use of legacy apps such as Sage Instant Accounts and Intuit Quick Books, more associated with the individual user or small company, but more often than not used en-masse in larger companies with 100+ desktops.

The impact of these legacy apps, is not just the security risks they pose, but also the impact on IT support in fixing the unintentional errors caused by over privileged desktop users.