In organizations where a User Activity Management (UAM) system is not implemented, team members can easily misuse the company’s data and resources—whether unintentional or with malicious intent.
UAM software tools track the online activities of the employees, ensuring that they utilize (time and financial) resources appropriately and comply with the organization’s data privacy and safety regulations.
UAM does more than just monitor company networks, connected devices, or workstations. It can also detect and stop insider threats. Whichever monitoring method you choose will entirely depend on your company’s needs and objectives.
Here are a few methods you can use to track computer activity with a User Activity Management system:
If a keylogger is built into your UAM software suite, you could monitor a person by keystroke logging. Keyloggers track and record every key struck by a user on a computer or mobile keyboard.
Monitoring employee activity by keylogging does not affect how they use their devices. In fact, the person typing a keyboard will not be aware that their actions are being monitored.
In keystroke logging, each keystroke transmits a signal that commands your computer programs to record one or all of the following actions:
- Time of the keypress Length of the keypress
- The velocity of the keypress
- Name of the key used
The UAM system records and stores keystrokes in a log file to be retrieved by whoever is in charge of the logging program. Keylogging provides a complete log of every email, username, password, search query, instant message, and other key sequences that users type.
Keylogging is effective in detecting cyber criminals and malicious actors within the organization. It also allows for the safekeeping of company account numbers and PIN codes, credit cards, and other sensitive financial information.
UAM has special tools for capturing screenshots (also known as a screen capture or screengrab). The system will randomly take screenshots of web pages, desktop applications, and other programs the employee might be running.
Some UAM software will require that you install the desktop client to take screenshots. That way, an admin can capture screenshots for all users individually or at once.
There is also the possibility to blur screenshots containing sensitive personal data to protect the employee’s private information. With most UAM programs, screenshots are automatically saved so you can view them later.
Technologies operating on a kernel are extensively used in cybersecurity, system control, virtualization, and monitoring solutions. Kernel computer activity monitor acts as employee desktop live viewer in systems running the Windows kernel and various hardware drivers.
UAM software running at the kernel level has complete access to the organization’s system and hardware resources. As such, it provides advanced attack detection and data management.
Remote kernel desktop monitoring software is feature-rich and can keep track of all employee desktop activities. Among others, some of the essential features of a kernel computer activity monitor include:
- Offline Record Facility
- Multi-Screen Monitoring
- Department Wise Monitoring
- Unlimited Computer Monitoring
- Record Viewer
- Inbuilt Messenger
This comprehensive user monitoring solution tracks teams of an organization even when they’re working remotely from different geographical locations. In case of any disciplinary action, an admin can send notifications directly to the employee’s computer.
Deep Packet Inspection (DPI)
Deep packet inspection, also known as packet sniffing, is a type of data processing that examines the content of data packets being sent over a checkpoint on the computer network.
Unlike conventional forms of stateful packet inspection, DPI provides a 360-degree view of data and metadata associated with each packet the UAM system interacts with.
In addition to the source of IP address, the destination of IP address, and port number, DPI also processes the header and the data contained in the packet.
The rich data scrutinized by DPI provides otherwise hidden threats within the data stream, such as:
- Data filtration attempts
- Content policy violations
- Criminal command and control communications
A user activity management system with DPI can also decide what to do with the threats discovered. Depending on the rules assigned by you, your internet service provider, or the network system administrator, DPI may take actions such as re-routing, alerting, or blocking.
In short, DPI can weed out any non-compliance to protocols, intrusions, spam, and other threats based on the defined criteria. Packets with uncategorized code or data payloads are blocked from passing through the inspection point.
A User Activity Monitoring system is an important part of data protection for businesses today. This employee monitoring solution can measure productivity, analyze team behavior, harden security, and streamline operational processes. Nonetheless, organizations should clarify their UAM needs and objectives before choosing a UAM tool.
As a best practice, enterprises should consider data protection tools that combine user activity monitoring with active data classification and discovery, policy-based controls, and innovative reporting.