- August 16, 2023: New Grading & Finding Behavior sections.
- May 11, 2020: Linked to related topics (rating details, data collection methods, & finding details).
The Desktop Software risk vector looks at a desktop device’s software version and compares it with the latest and currently available software versions to determine if the device software is supported or out-of-date.
Desktop devices are laptops, servers, and other non-tablet, non-phone computers in a company's network that access the Internet. The outgoing communications from desktop devices includes metadata about the device's operating system and browser version (endpoint data).
Newer versions of operating systems and web browsers typically fix stability issues, bugs, and vulnerabilities that existed in older versions. Bad actors frequently exploit known bugs in older software versions to steal information or run malicious software. The use of unsupported operating systems and browsers is correlated with the presence of a high number of malware infections and an increased likelihood of breach.
- If there are unsupported desktop devices in an organization's network, there is a greater risk of:
- System failure (vendor devices are not being maintained).
- Disruption of business continuity.
- Attackers may be able to use unpatched vulnerabilities to gain system access.
- Connecting a personal device to a corporate network infrastructure adds a potential surface of attack for a threat actor to gain access to company data and sensitive information.
The absence of findings for this risk vector does not negatively impact the rating. The impact of this grade towards the rating is equivalent to an A.
(Out of 70.5% in Diligence)
Review Desktop Software findings.
- Search and identify unsupported desktop software, and then update the software to the latest version.
- Set up auto-update methods for critical desktop software.
- Insufficient information prevents Bitsight from identifying unsupported software. The use of software device management systems is recommended, along with integrating human processes that ensures systems in the organization are patched and the software is up-to-date.
Automated: Not applicable.
User-Requested: User-requested refresh not available.