7 Ways to Protect Legacy Systems from Cyberthreats

 In Cyber Security

It isn’t always possible to migrate legacy systems to up-to-date platforms, which makes them vulnerable to old and new security threats on an ongoing basis. However, there are several measures businesses can take to minimize the risk to these systems.

1. Limit user access

Make sure legacy systems are not accessed with administrator credentials except where needed. Review end user accounts and remove unneeded privileges. Make sure user logins that don’t belong to current users are deactivated.

2. Limit network access

Legacy systems should have limited network access, which can be achieved in several ways. Older systems can be placed on a private network isolated from the internet or can be protected via proxy settings. When internet access is required, use firewalls to restrict the ports open on these devices. Consider microsegmentation to limit an intruder’s ability to gain access to other systems if the legacy system is compromised.

3. Implement encryption

Legacy systems may not use secure communication protocols or may rely on older, more vulnerable versions. Encryption can be added using a VPN.

4. Monitor the network and endpoints

Implement a monitoring solution and prioritize alerts on legacy systems to ensure potential threats are detected rapidly.

 5. Apply all existing patches

While there won’t be any new patches coming for legacy systems, it’s extremely important to catch up and apply all existing patches to ensure the maximal level of protection available. For similar reasons, it’s important to make sure antivirus software is installed on these machines.

6. Migrate workloads off the platform

Just because there are some workloads on a server that can’t upgrade doesn’t mean everything running on that server should be left in place. Any other workloads that can be migrated to the supported platform, should be. If workloads can’t be migrated, they should be updated to the last available version for this platform to ensure they have the most protection possible.

7. Consider using a virtual machine

If you have both obsolete hardware and software, consider migrating workloads to a virtual machine to allow you to eliminate the unsupported hardware.

In an ideal world, all systems would be kept up to date with the latest patches and always be updated to run on supported versions. In the real world, lack of time, money, or technical skill means that isn’t always possible. To prevent those outdated systems from putting data at risk, implement some or all of the suggestions above.

Infrastructure support services from Prescient Solutions help prevent you from falling behind on critical maintenance and allow businesses in the Chicago and Schaumburg area to keep up with patches and upgrades. Contact Prescient Solutions to help you ensure your legacy systems are up to date with information security.

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