It’s no secret that ransomware is top of mind for many chief information security officers (CISOs) as the number of attacks has increased exponentially. As seen in the latest Microsoft Digital Defense Report, our “telemetry indicates that organizations faced an increased rate of ransomware attacks compared to last year, with the number of human-operated ransomware attacks up more than 200% since September 2022.”1 In addition, organizations on average employ 80 security tools that can further overwhelm security analysts with data and alerts, while offering at best an obscured view of their environment. Scaling device protection and security operations center (SOC) efficiency by simplifying, automating, and augmenting security analyst workstreams is paramount to countering this dynamic and core to our product vision.
Today we are excited to announce that Gartner has named Microsoft a Leader in the 2023 Gartner® Magic Quadrant™ for Endpoint Protection Platforms. We believe this recognition showcases Microsoft’s continued progress and excellence in helping organizations protect their endpoints against even the most sophisticated attacks and driving continued efficiency for SOC teams.
Microsoft Defender for Endpoint is an endpoint security platform that helps organizations secure their digital estate using AI-powered, industry-leading endpoint detection and response across all platforms, devices, and Internet of Things (IoT). It is core to Microsoft Defender XDR. Built on the industry’s broadest threat intelligence informed by more than 65 trillion daily signals and over 10,000 security experts, it empowers security teams to fend off sophisticated threats.1
Figure 1. Gartner® Magic QuadrantTM for Endpoint Protection Platforms. Source: Gartner (December 2023).
Microsoft’s leadership in endpoint security reflects the close partnership forged with customers that has shaped our product development and innovation. Recent highlights include:
- Elevate your security posture: An organization’s best offense is a secure defense. Key to minimizing threat exposure is a combination of simplified security settings management to curtail misconfigurations (generally available as of November 2023), proactive vulnerability management to harden your defenses, and next-generation antivirus to neutralize malware at the perimeter. Defender for Endpoint is unique in providing built-in posture assessments and vulnerability management capabilities that continually evaluate an organization’s security posture and prioritizes remediation suggestions. Other security vendors treat these capabilities as a separate product that must be integrated, further burdening organizations that require such protections up front. Additionally, Defender for Endpoint’s next-generation antivirus, which has been tested and recognized in various industry tests, such as the 2023 MITRE Engenuity ATT&CK® Evaluations, fortifies the strong prevention stack to protect against endpoint-based threats.
- Protect against the most sophisticated threats: Drawing on vast threat intelligence informed by 65 trillion daily signals and more than 10,000 security experts around the globe, Microsoft possesses a unique vantage point on the emerging threat landscape.1 Microsoft Defender XDR’s industry-first automatic attack disruption capability reflects this distinctive position, harnessing the seamless integration across the workloads (identities, endpoints, email, and software as a service [SaaS] apps) to disrupt advanced cyberthreats such as ransomware, business email compromise, and attacker-in-the-middle with high confidence. Attack disruption has rapidly evolved to now stopping human-operated attacks, on average within 3 minutes, with just Defender for Endpoint. Coupled with the new deception capabilities introduced in November 2023, automatic attack disruption can disrupt threat campaigns even earlier with the high-fidelity signal.
- Secure all devices across the enterprise: Defender for Endpoint continued to expand its coverage with network detection and enterprise IoT devices included at no added cost as a part of Microsoft 365 E5 and E5 Security plans. Cross-platform enhancements across macOS, Linux, and Windows regularly roll out, keeping customers at the forefront of available protections.
Endpoint security is at the core of the Microsoft Defender suite. The following recent innovations reinforce Microsoft’s leadership in helping SOCs scale protection and efficiency on a platform level.
- See and act on a complete view of the digital threat landscape with an AI-powered, unified security operations platform: In November 2023, we announced the industry’s first unified platform that will help close the talent gap for security and data professionals and accelerate SOC efficiency. Defender for Endpoint is core to this platform. It combines “the power of leading solutions in security information and event management (SIEM), extended detection and response (XDR), and generative AI for security.” By working seamlessly across Microsoft Sentinel, Microsoft Defender XDR, and Microsoft Security Copilot, security analysts only need to work with a single set of automation rules and playbooks. Plus, they only need to use plain language to execute complex tasks in an instant with Security Copilot embedded in the platform.
- Give your security team coverage with around-the-clock access to Microsoft expertise: Recognizing that sophisticated threats go beyond the endpoint, Microsoft introduced Microsoft Defender Experts for XDR. This managed service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, helping organizations extend their SOC team to fully triage events and respond to incidents across domains.
Download the complimentary report to get more details on our positioning as a Leader. Our customers and partners have been an invaluable part of this multiyear journey. We owe our immense gratitude to you.
Unmatched customer impact defending against ransomware
With capabilities unique to Microsoft Defender such as automatic attack disruption, the odds are starting to tilt in favor of defenders. For example, in August 2023, hackers compromised the devices of a medical research lab. With lives and millions of dollars in research at stake, the potential reward for hackers to encrypt the devices and demand a ransom was high. Automatic attack disruption immediately shut them out from accessing any of the lab’s devices. And the security analysts didn’t even have to lift a finger.
Thanks to the invaluable partnership and insights from organizations of all sizes around the globe, Microsoft has been named a Leader in every Gartner® Magic QuadrantTM for Endpoint Protection Platforms report since 2019. In 2024 customers will continue to see leading innovation as we further build on a strong foundation of AI-enabled capabilities to empower defenders and drive efficiencies for SOC teams with more automated disruption of advanced threats, Microsoft Security Copilot supported tasks, and more.
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Microsoft Defender for Endpoint
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We know that diving deep into how a solution really works is key to making any investment. If you are not yet taking advantage of Microsoft’s leading endpoint security solution, visit Microsoft Defender for Endpoint and start a free trial today to start evaluating the leading endpoint protection platform.
To learn more about Microsoft Security solutions, visit our website. Bookmark the Security blog to keep up with our expert coverage on security matters. Also, follow us on LinkedIn (Microsoft Security) and X (@MSFTSecurity) for the latest news and updates on cybersecurity.
1Microsoft Digital Defense Report, Microsoft. 2023.
Gartner, Magic Quadrant for Endpoint Protection Platforms, Evgeny Mirolyubov, Max Taggett, Franz Hinner, Nikul Patel, 31 December 2023.
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Author: Rob Lefferts