- Auditing Group Policy changes allow organizations to review the preview activities and detect changes liable to result in damages.
- You can employ Group Policy auditors to monitor and analyze the changes in the Group Policy.
- Feel free to use many auditing tools to run a forensic diagnosis on your Group Policy and Active Directory.
The Group Policy is an essential security tool in the Active Directory. It provides a central control system for all the computers and users in the network. However, unauthorized changes to the Group Policy can result in fatal damages. So, it is essential to use Group Policy Auditors to monitor its changes.
Also, users can check what to do when they run into Group Policy errors on Windows PC.
Group Policy Auditors are tools for monitoring and checking the changes made in the Group Policy. They deliver complete visibility into the changes made to Group Policy objects. Likewise, they show the current state and settings of the Group Policy, allowing you to compare them to the standard.
How do I audit Group Policy changes?
Follow the steps below to audit the Group Policy changes using Event Viewer:
- Left-click the Start button, search for Event Viewer and click to open it.
- In the left pane, navigate to Windows Logs, then select Security.
- In the right pane, click Filter Current Log.
- Then, enter the desired Event ID in the field labeled. Click OK to prompt the list of changes of the Event ID entered.
- Double-click an Event ID to view its properties.
The steps above will show the details logged in the Event ID selected. The Event is logged when a Group Policy object is created. Read our guide on Windows Event Viewer and how to use it on Windows 11.
The following are our picks of the best Group Policy auditors for policy changes:
ADAudit Plus – Best for threats mitigation
ADAudit Plus is a UBA (User Behavior Analytics)-driven auditor. It keeps track of the activities in your Active Directory. It helps transform your event log data into readable reports.
Also, admins can get a list of the changes and updates made on your Windows Server environment, like the Group Policy.
Some great features of the ADAudit Plus include:
- Offers an instant alert that notifies users about the changes in the Windows Server environment.
- Provides a detailed overview of the changes made to the Group Policy and the overall Domain by privileged users.
- Secures and mitigates insider threats by enforcing the UBA (User Behavior Analytics) and limiting access to the Domain.
- Tracks changes regarding login activities. Also, it detects Active Directory account lockouts.
- Monitors and logs workers’ active and idle time across their workstations.
Keep track of all Active Directory behavior on your network from a single console!
ManageEngine ADManager Plus – Best for multi-activities
ManageEngine ADManager Plus has a simple user interface that makes it easy for users to access.
Also, it is an auditing tool for monitoring and reporting changes in the Active Directory and Group Policy. It has a central web-based User Interface for managing bulk user accounts.
Other notable features you can look out for include:
- Has an easy-to-use interface making it usable for different operators and purposes
- Provides an insightful report of the changes and activities in the Group Policy object such as password change or expiration
- Uses extensive filtering and drilling mechanisms for in-depth analysis of the events in the Group Policy
- Monitors other functions like CPU usage and memory management. Also, it can display reports in graphs or dashboards
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LT Auditor+ for Group Policy – Best for qualitative forensic reports
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LT Auditor+ for Group Policy is a tool that organizations use for improving incident response time.
Further, it provides comprehensive audit reports of every change and improvement in the Event log. Likewise, it ensures confidentiality, integrity, and privacy in the database.
However, some notable features of the LT Auditor+ for Group Policy are:
- Monitors every activity and change made in the audited Group Policy object and a cast record of the before and after values to meet compliance control transformation requirements
- Provides a reliable and qualitative analysis of who did what from where and when regarding the data collected from all Group Policy objects within your Active Directory environment
- Provides real-life alerts whenever any critical policy changes occur for any Group Policy object
- Changes that involve the Domain Controller audit policies, Account Password, or Account Lockout policies will trigger the notifier
- Allows you to access, audit, and monitor the Group Policy objects across numerous Active Directory platforms from a single console
Netwrix Account Auditor – Best for account lockouts detection
The Netwrix Account Auditor offers an insight into what’s going on in the Active Directory and the Group Policy. It tracks and reviews the data collected from the activities on your Domain.
Also, it is a tool for providing swift resolution for account lockout issues with Active Directory.
However, Netwrix Account Auditor has many great features that make it one of the best for auditing Group Policy changes. Some are:
- It has an easy-to-use user interface that allows users to deploy and use the tool
- Reports real-time updates regarding issues affecting Active Directory and the Group Policy
- Gives a comprehensive report of changes to the Group Policy and enumerates where, when, and who made the changes
- There is a good auditing mechanism that provides high-quality and in-depth forensic reports of Group Policy activities
- Offers real-time insight into risks from Group Policy settings
Adaxes – Processes data for real-live analysis
Adaxes is a tool for auditing Group Policy changes and reporting real-live analysis of all events in the Domain and Windows environment. It is easy to navigate as it uses a single web-based interface.
Furthermore, some interesting features of Adaxes are:
- Provides an extensive report about the changes made in the Group Policy and notifies users of any looming threats
- Allows admins to give Active Directory management capabilities to users without granting them domain administrator rights
- It is versatile in services it offers, ranging from monitoring the Domain, auditing the activities and changes on it, and reporting
- Organizes an authorization check that reviews the rights and privileges given to users. It prevents over-privileged users from accessing sensitive data
Do not hesitate to let us know your pick in the comments section below.
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