Endpoint protection platforms (EPPs)​/Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR)

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The market for EDR (Endpoint Detection and Response) solutions has grown rapidly in recent years, and industry experts predict that this trend will continue. Gartner predicts that more than 60% of enterprises will have replaced older antivirus products with combined EPP and EDR solutions by the end 2025 [1].

  •  Identification: When a program is running, we would know its maliciousness and reputation. Therefore, before implementing activities on the Endpoints, EDR would identify whether those activities are malicious or not by safely running them in a separate space first.
  • Protection: This involves blocking programs that are determined malicious, or moving files to a safe place to be kept in quarantine. Beyond the cybersecurity field, quarantine seems to have become an ordinary term these days as we hear it so often in relation to COVID-19.
  • Detection: Monitoring activities and behavior on Endpoints for detecting malware. Think about it like a CCTV. If someone commits illegal activities at an entrance, the security guard monitoring the activity on CCTV will not give access permission but instead will catch the specious guy. Malware detection is basically a similar concept.
  • Response: Responding to detected behavior like blocking activity to prevent damages to specific areas of the system that would otherwise result in the failure of computer boot, and instantly backing up images, videos, documents, etc. that are about to be encrypted by ransomware into a protected area. The feeling of desperation when you lose data would be similar to that of when you lose your cherished anniversary pictures, a child’s birthday, and wedding photos. How devastated would you feel?
  • Recovery: Recovering files that otherwise could not be opened due to encryption by malware by using the files backed up during the response stage. Imagine how happy you would feel when you get the files back that you thought were gone for good. It would be beyond what words could describe. I remember one time my computer suddenly went blank while I was editing my documents. I nervously turned the computer back on but uncertain what would happen to the work I was finishing. And as soon as I found out the document wasn’t lost (as it was backed up) after all, I couldn’t help thanking Microsoft! Sounds familiar?

An endpoint protection platform (EPP) often includes antivirus tools while also offering a few additional key features. First, it adds machine learning to support behavioral analysis, which extends traditional threat monitoring beyond known threats. This capability allows an EPP to prevent unknown attacks in addition to the ones that are more common. An EPP also verifies indicators of compromise (IoC) and monitors a device’s memory to identify irregular patterns in memory consumption.

An EPP is better than basic antivirus protection for widespread endpoint management and threat prevention in large companies, but some sophisticated attacks are still able to evade detection. It’s also worth noting that while EPP is useful for identifying vulnerabilities and preventing attacks, it stops short of taking action to remove active threats that advance past your endpoints. That’s why it’s often combined with EDR solutions to create a multi-layered security system.