What is Microsoft Endpoint Defender?

Microsoft Defender for Endpoint is an enterprise endpoint security platform designed to help corporate networks prevent, detect, investigate, and respond to advanced threats.

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Defender for Endpoint uses the following combination of technology built on Windows 10 and Microsoft's robust cloud service:

  • behavioral sensors Endpoint: Embedded in Windows 10, these sensors collect and process behavioral signals from the operating system and send this sensor data to your private, isolated, cloud instance of Microsoft Defender for Endpoint.
  • Cloud Security Analysis: Leveraging big data, device learning and unique Microsoft optics across the Windows ecosystem, enterprise cloud products (such as Office 365) and online assets, behavioral signals are translated into insights, detections and recommended responses to advanced threats.
  • Intelligence Threat: Threat intelligence enables Defender for the Endpoint to identify attacker tools, techniques and procedures and generate alerts when they are observed in the collected sensor data.

Microsoft Defender for Endpoint is composed of the following protections:

  • vulnerability management
  • attack surface reduction
  • Next generation protection
  • Endpoint detection and response
  • Automated investigation and correction
  • Microsoft Secure Score for Devices
  • Microsoft Threat Experts
  • Centralized configuration and administration, APIs
  • Integration with Microsoft solutions
  • Microsoft 365 Defender

Direct integration with multiple Microsoft solutions:

  • Azure Defend
  • Azure Sentinel
  • Intune
  • Microsoft Cloud App Security
  • Microsoft Defender for Identity?
  • Microsoft Defender for Office
  • Skype for Business

What does the market say regarding this Security solution:

Microsoft was named leader in Forrester Wave™: Endpoint Security Software as a Service, Q2 2021, receiving one of the highest scores in the strategy category and among the top three scores in the current offering category. Forrester notes, “The focus on endpoint security has increased as cyber risks shift from the network to endpoints, driven by the increased number of workers at home and the mass movement of data from data centers connected to the corporate network to edge devices”.

Microsoft Defender for Endpoint is Leader as disclosed by Forrester:

reference: Microsoft

Licensing Requirements:

  • Windows 10 Enterprise E5
  • Windows 10 Education A5
  • Microsoft 365 E5 (M365 E5) which includes Windows 10 Enterprise E5
  • Microsoft 365 A5 (M365 A5)
  • Microsoft 365 E5 Security
  • Microsoft Security 365 A5
  • Microsoft Defender for Endpoint

Microsoft Defender for Server Endpoint, Licensing Options:

  • Azure Security Center with Azure Defender enabled
  • Microsoft Defender for Server Endpoint one per covered server.

Customers can purchase server licenses (one per server covered Operating System Environment (OSE)) for Microsoft Defender for Endpoint Servers if they have a combined minimum of 50 licenses for one or more of the following user licenses:

  • Microsoft Defender for Endpoint
  • Windows E5/A5
  • Microsoft 365 E5/A5
  • Microsoft 365 E5/A5 Security

Browser Requirements:

  • Microsoft Edge
  • Google Chrome

Note: While other browsers may work, the browsers mentioned are the ones that are supported.

Requirements for workstations:

  • Windows 7 sp1 Enterprise (Requires ESU for support.)
  • Windows 7 SP1 Pro (Requires ESU for support.)
  • Windows 8.1 Enterprise
  • Windows 8.1 Pro
  • Windows 10 Enterprise
  • Windows 10 Enterprise LTSC 2016 (or later)
  • Windows 10 Education
  • Windows 10 Pro
  • Windows 10 Pro Education

Requirements for Windows Servers:

  • Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1
  • Windows Server 2012 R2
  • Windows Server 2016
  • Windows Server, version 1803 or later
  • Windows Server 2019
  • Windows Virtual Desktop

Virtual machines running Windows 10 Enterprise 2016 LTSB may encounter performance issues if run on non-Microsoft virtualization platforms.

For virtual environments, we recommend using Windows 10 Enterprise LTSC 2019 or later.

Other supported operating systems:

  • Android
  • iOS
  • Linux
  • macOS

In the next article, you'll learn how to prepare a Windows Defender lab for the endpoint.

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Diego Gonzalez
Cloud Security Consultant in one of the largest Digital Security consultancies in Brazil, graduated in Computer Science responsible for Cloud Security tools (Azure), MDM and MAM management in Intune, for administering and supporting (Microsoft CAS, Defender ATP, Azure ATP, Conditional Access, AIP, Secure Identity Management and Compliance), Currently I work in the Implementation of new Projects and business continuation related to Information Security in products such as Office 365 and Azure, I am certified by Microsoft and I am still searching new Certifications on existing platforms in the market.
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