End User Guide

End User Guide

What is Kolide?

Kolide is a security tool that ensures your computer meets your company’s security requirements.

Kolide’s agent checks your computer for things like:

  • Your operating system and internet browser are up-to-date
  • Your malware protection software is working properly
  • Your firewall is on

If your device fails one of these checks, then Kolide will prevent you from signing in to your work apps until you have fixed the problem. (But don’t worry, we’ll give you plenty of warning, and always help you get unblocked.)

How Will I Use Kolide?

There are two primary ways you’ll interact with Kolide: during your Okta sign-in, and through our menu bar app.

Kolide during Okta authentication

When your computer is in good shape, Kolide doesn’t get in the way. You may see a brief moment while it checks your device for issues during the Okta sign-in process, but that’s it.

Sometimes Kolide will find a problem and ask you to fix it before letting you sign in to the app. Here’s an example of what that looks like.

After Kolide is rolled out, you may need to fix a few things at first, but then you probably won’t hear from us again until it’s time to install a security update.

If you haven’t fixed an issue but you urgently need to authenticate, you can also snooze blocking.

Snoozing (when available) gives you extra time to fix issues.

However, you can only snooze once per week, and your IT team may disable this feature for particularly urgent issues.

The Kolide menu bar app

In between Okta logins, Kolide will inform you of your computer’s status on your computer’s menu bar.

Kolide will send you a notification when your computer’s status changes.

The menu bar app lets you know how long you have to fix issues before they stop you from authenticating and provides links to further documentation.

Why Does My Company Use Kolide?

Most organizations have legal and contractual obligations to protect sensitive data and practice good security. This obligation includes keeping employee devices secure. However, there are many device security products that block employees from signing into work apps without explaining why and force you to contact the IT Help Desk each time you are blocked.

Your company chose Kolide because:

  • We inform you something is wrong before your computer gets blocked
  • We provide well-written instructions on how to fix most problems
  • We offer options to ask for exemptions and extra time

In other words, your company chose Kolide because they care about your experience, and they want to run a security program that is effective but minimally disruptive.

What Does Kolide Check For?

Kolide checks your computer for compliance and security issues. Your company can customize what Kolide checks for and even write their own checks, but generally, it’s things like:

  • Does your computer have all the latest security patches?
  • Have you restarted your web browser recently to apply the latest update?
  • Are the security tools on your computer working correctly?
  • Have you changed settings on your computer that might make it easier to hack?

Why Can’t My Company Fix Computer Problems for Me?

Your company actually fixes many computer problems for you using device management software, often without you even realizing it.

When Kolide brings an issue to your attention, it’s because the IT team:

  • Cannot fix it without disrupting your day (like restarting your computer)

  • Wants to give you an opportunity to push back if there is a valid reason your computer has an insecure setting

  • Hopes to educate you about a policy you might not have known exists

  • Needs to address devices that aren’t enrolled in MDM

❌ A good example of when IT tools can feel hostile. Kolide avoids this approach.

Beyond these reasons, your IT team is also looking for ways to engage with you and other employees that will scale as the company grows.

What About My Privacy?

Kolide is deeply committed to being transparent and respectful when it comes to user privacy, and that value is baked into our product at every level.

Security tools can feel invasive, and we don’t want you to have to wonder what Kolide is capable of or how your company uses it. We’ve created a Privacy Center that allows you to see what data Kolide is collecting from your computer, its potential impact on your privacy, and who in your company can see that data.

If you are interested in the philosophy that defines our approach to privacy and how we treat end-users, read our founder’s manifesto, Honest Security.

Honest Security is Kolide’s North Star and informs how we approach questions of privacy and end-user interaction.