Windows 10S: The Secure Mode for Businesses

Windows 10S: The Secure Mode for Businesses

Regarding business security, computers need special attention. Sensitive data passes through them, and they’re critical for doing business. Keeping the company machines security can create a headache. From choosing an antivirus to finding the right configurations, security is time-consuming and labyrinthine. However, many company IT departments are unaware that Windows provides many tools to help professionals secure their devices. Meet Windows 10S. It’s a security mode which locks down the Windows 10 ecosystem to create a solid groundwork for security.

Windows 10S is one of the most notable updates to the operating system in the past four years, especially for businesses. Read on to discover exactly what Windows 10S entails and why every organization should consider updating their Windows-based machines to 10S.

Introducing Windows 10S

Windows 10S is Windows 10 – in S mode. Released in 2017, this mode emphasizes Microsoft-verified security configurations to create a sealed layer of protection across the entire operating system. Although the S officially stands for security, Microsoft also notes that S mode is streamlined for speed and safe browsing.

When used properly, S mode increases machine performance and helps keep everything safe.

S mode is different from safe mode, a standard feature of every Windows operating system. Specifically, unlike safe mode, users can do everything in S mode that they’re able to do in the “regular” Windows 10. It also differs in its availability. According to Microsoft’s FAQ, S mode only exists for certain qualifying devices. However, every device running Windows 10 version 1803 or later has S mode enabled.

How to Check a Windows 10 Version

Checking to see if a Windows 10 device runs version 1803 or later is easy. Follow these steps.

  1. Press Start (the Windows logo in the bottom left corner).
  2. Select Settings (the gear symbol on the left vertical menu).
  3. Choose System (often found in the upper left-hand corner).
  4. Select About (at the bottom of the System navigation panel).
  5. Scroll down to Windows Specifications to find the version.

Any number between 1803 and 1903 – the current version as of 2019 – has the option to enable S mode if the correct license agreement was purchased. Read on to determine if this option is appropriate for the machine.

The Next Level Security of Windows 10S

Windows 10S is a viable option for businesses or other organizations which need increased security but aren’t sure what third-party options are most appropriate. Windows 10S locks down the operating system of the device by blocking third-party software and making it more difficult to access system files.

With Windows 10S, users enjoy a stripped-down version of Windows 10 which operates with a whitelist orientation towards software. This makes it dramatically harder for rogue software to install itself, or viruses to move through the operating system files.

For computers in many environments, such as school computers or corporate offices, that’s great. However, there are a few things to be aware of with Windows 10S:

  • It’s only possible to use Microsoft Edge, the native Windows browser. Chrome cannot be used.
  • Software not found in the Windows Store cannot be installed. Companies which rely on software not found in the Windows Store will have trouble using Windows 10S.
  • S mode is one-way. Once it has been disabled, it cannot be re-enabled.
  • If these restrictions pose no concern for a company, then S mode represents another layer of security which help keep devices locked up against cybercriminals. However, Microsoft does recommend that S mode is used in conjunction with – not as a replacement for – other traditional forms of cybersecurity, such as an antivirus.

How to Enable S Mode for Windows 10

Enabling S mode is a simple but highly technical procedure. Therefore, Smile recommends that companies without a trained IT specialist contact a technician. Likewise, it is also possible to have S mode installed by manufacturers when purchasing a new device.

However, for IT professionals, Microsoft has published the instructions for enabling S mode on qualifying devices. Please refer to the official documentation from Microsoft for this procedure.

Improve Company Security Today

Maintaining device – and therefore data – security remains among one of the most critical concerns for companies today. As businesses increasingly rely on digital capabilities to keep pace with markets and customers, there are more opportunities for criminals to steal valuable information.

Windows 10S is one option for companies seeking ways to secure their digital environment. It is a potentially cost-effective, and secure strategy for ensuring that corporate or school computers remain safe.

Smile Business Products is dedicated to helping you design efficient, secure business environments. Contact us today to discuss how Windows 10S can benefit your organization.

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