Unfortunately in today’s world, it’s not a question of if your endpoints will become compromised, but when. According to a Forbes article, 70% of breaches originate from an endpoint. You need to protect your data, and many security experts turn to either endpoint detection and response (EDR) or an endpoint protection platform (EPP) to make that happen. While these are both great on their own, the truth is, you need both to keep your endpoints secure. In this article, we’ll cover how EDR and EPP work together to protect your endpoints from malware, identify issues quicker, and make your investigations easier.
Table of contents
- What is EDR?
- What is EPP?
- How EPP and EDR work together to protect your endpoints
- Identify security incidents faster
- Simplify IT investigations
- Why you need both EPP and EDR
Endpoint detection and response (EDR) is the security process of monitoring endpoints on your network, including computers and smartphones, and collecting data from them. This data is then used to establish a baseline for each device, so threats are easier to spot when they occur. Many EDR systems have automated threat responses that work to contain the threat or remove it from the device while alerting the security team. They can also help you investigate the threat and determine if you need to get the authorities involved.
An endpoint protection platform (EPP) is a software added to endpoint devices on your network that protects them from file-based malware attacks and detects possible threats. Different EPPs use different detection methods. Some will focus more on indicators of compromise (IOC), while others will pay more attention to behavioral analysis. The best platforms will use a combination of detection techniques to best protect your endpoints. They are also cloud-based, so they won’t take up too much space on your devices with their stored data.
Keeping malware off your endpoint devices is the best way to avoid threats in the first place. EPPs work to match any threats on your endpoints with known malware signatures to identify them and remove them from your device more quickly. Unfortunately, new malware pops up all the time and existing malware can be tweaked, so an EPP isn’t enough to protect your network on its own.
Once a threat has made its way onto your endpoint, you need to contain and remove it quickly to keep it from getting to your network. That’s where EDR comes in. While EPP is more of a passive tool, IT security teams actively use EDR to isolate the threat and start automated resolution plans. EDR also helps security teams with their threat investigation to determine which endpoints were affected and where the attack came from.
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If a threat gets into your network, it’s important to identify it as soon as possible, so you can create a plan to remove it. With behavioral analysis, an EPP identifies anomalies, even if they don’t have a threat signature that the platform recognizes. However, EPP is really for making sure threats don’t make it to the network in the first place, so this is where EDR really shines.
While EPP is the first line of defense, EDR works to ensure that, even when your EPP fails, threats aren’t able to wreak havoc on your system. EDR collects and correlates data from different endpoints and within the network to identify anomalies and determine incidents as they occur. The system monitors your network in real time, so you get alerts as soon as something isn’t right. This improved visibility allows you to identify security threats faster, so you can jumpstart your investigations.
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With EPP platforms, the hope is that the most investigation you’ll have to do is determining how malware was allowed onto the device. If it was human error, usually from a phishing scam or something similar, you can train your employees to recognize these attacks before they click on suspicious links. Because EPP is a frontline defense, you won’t use it to find and remove threats that have already gotten past your endpoints.
EDR can simplify your cybersecurity investigations by providing visibility into all of your endpoints and network devices in real time. By viewing where the attacker has been, the system can predict where it’s going next. With this knowledge, your cybersecurity team can find the threat and isolate it before it can do any more damage to your system. Once you’ve removed the threat from your system, you can determine where it got in and beef up security to prevent similar attacks in the future.
EPP acts as a frontline fighter, keeping as much malware off your devices as possible. However, it can’t stop everything from getting through, so you need a second layer of defense as well. This is what EDR offers. Once a threat has gotten past your EPP, your EDR system can react quickly to contain it and help your security team oust it from your system. Using both EPP and EDR is the best way to protect your network from all the possible threats out there.