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What is endpoint detection and response (EDR)?

Endpoint detection and response is a set of security solutions to monitor endpoint devices and protect them from cyber threats. Even one infected computer is enough for hackers to get inside the company’s network and perform malicious actions. Let’s learn more about EDR security and its importance.

Karolis Bareckas

Karolis Bareckas

Jan 27, 2022 · 3 min read

What is endpoint detection and response (EDR)?

How do EDR solutions work?

Since many employees nowadays work remotely, companies face the challenge of protecting them from phishing, ransomware, and other types of cyberattacks. This might not be an easy task when you have your staff scattered across multiple cities or even continents. If one of them is hacked, it can be enough to put the entire company at risk.

What makes EDR challenging is that people use their personal devices to access corporate networks, and these often lack decent security software.

EDR allows you to identify threats and respond to incidents immediately, thus mitigating the damage of the attack. Multiple vendors sell EDR solutions, allowing IT administrators to manage endpoint devices, detect threats, and liquidate them.

Benefits of EDR security

Data breach prevention

An average data breach cost $4.24 million for a company – not to mention a damaged reputation, lost customers, and expensive lawsuits. Rather than waiting for an incident to happen and then dealing with the consequences, it’s best to be one step ahead of threat actors.

EDR solutions represent a proactive approach against cybersecurity risks. They can detect suspicious activities in a network before a hacker can establish a backdoor and steal your sensitive data.

Automatic threat detection

EDR can automatically detect threats, get rid of them, and alert IT administrators. This way, your network is protected 24/7. When a security incident occurs, every minute matters. EDR can stop the attack and later on you can investigate what has actually happened.

Deep visibility

EDR allows you to investigate users’ behavior, background processes, and occurring events, thus identifying suspicious activities. Since malware is always evolving, EDR solutions use artificial intelligence to keep up with the changing patterns of known malicious programs.

Reduced attack surface

EDR solutions may include disk encryption, firewalls, and device control, reducing the attack surface. Let’s say your employees often use USB devices at work. You can monitor activity on those devices, block malware, and prevent unauthorized data transfer.

Simple investigation

EDR provides you with rich details and analysis of every incident, so you don’t need to waste precious time digging into an incident.

Is EDR the same as antivirus?

EDR security systems include many different tools, an antivirus being one of them. While an antivirus detects and removes various threats on endpoint devices, such as laptops, smartphones, tablets, and more, EDR is a much broader solution. It encompasses antiviruses, firewalls, and network-monitoring software.

EDR vs. XDR vs. MDR

Many other services have been designed to protect your company’s infrastructure, and it may be confusing to understand which one is right for you. XDR and MDR are often discussed along with EDR. How are they different?

XDR (extended detection and response) is more evolved than EDR. It not only protects endpoints but also extends its capabilities to cloud systems, servers, and networks, unifying them all to a single security platform.

MDR (managed detection and response) is a service that protects the entire IT infrastructure of an organization, including endpoints. MDR providers often include EDR solutions in their service package.

Why should you adopt EDR?

Suitable for large organizations. Large companies can have hundreds of thousands of endpoints connected to their network, which makes endpoint protection challenging. EDR is a unified solution to monitor all those endpoints and prevent cyberattacks from happening.

A non-intrusive approach. The biggest advantage of EDR is that it monitors endpoints silently without asking a user to perform any additional actions.

Proactive threat protection. Many breaches go undetected for months or even years. Companies often learn they have become victims of an attack only when hackers drop the breached database on the dark web. That’s why it’s important to proactively monitor endpoint devices and detect intruders before they do harm.

Low cost. EDR allows you to save a buck and protect your whole organization with one unified platform. However, different EDR vendors might have different security packages that may vary in cost.