The security threat landscape has expanded and cyber attacks have grown in volume and sophistication. Attackers now take advantage of technology and automation to create and launch new coordinated attacks targeted at end users.
Most attacks start by compromising an endpoint, meaning that firewall protection alone is not enough. An effective firewall will secure your virtual and cloud environments. But what about your servers and desktops? And what about users operating outside your network?
Endpoints represent soft targets for threat actors who can mount effective and targeted attacks at minimal cost to themselves.
However the average cost to an organisation of a successful endpoint attack is over $5 million on account of the loss of productivity, system downtime and information theft.
Gartner has predicted that by the end of 2020 endpoint devices will be the source of 99% of vulnerabilities exploited.
IT Security Teams need to ensure they have an effective endpoint-security strategy in place within their overall network security framework that can keep up with modern threats.
Zero-day malware can often bypass traditional security systems and antivirus solutions to exploit vulnerabilities in an organisation’s infrastructure.
Fileless attacks incorporate exploits, macros and other methods that don’t even require a user to download anything to activate them. These are much more likely to succeed than traditional file-based malware.
Endpoints are regularly removed from network boundaries and encrypted internet traffic can often circumvent basic SSL and SSH prevention capabilities.
Effective endpoint protection is secured via an advanced, multi-layered, multi-method, purpose-built malware and exploit prevention solution that protects all your endpoint devices from both known and unknown threats.
It is also important to ensure your endpoint security solutions protects all devices and operating systems, not just Windows-based PC laptops and desktops, but also Mac/IoS and Android devices which have come under increased attack as malicious actors develop specific threats to infiltrate them.
Previously endpoint protection primarily relied on a traditional signature-based antivirus solution installed on the device. However the effectiveness of this technology has diminished over time as operating systems, networks and applications evolved in complexity. As a result, legacy AV solutions alone are no longer effective in stopping modern advanced threats.
Fileless attacks do not have any signatures and do not install any new files on the system. There contain nothing for a traditional antivirus to scan or analyse. A fileless attack can easily circumvent static, disk-based detection allowing an attacker to exploit endpoints. The attacker can then use the trusted applications installed on the device to perform reconnaissance.
Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR)
EDR is a more advanced endpoint solution addressing the need for real-time endpoint monitoring with a focus on behavioural analytics and incident response. It can be managed from a centralised platform and provides complete visibility into every endpoint in the corporate infrastructure.
EDR uses machine learning and threat intelligence techniques for threat hunting, detection and incident response. Its main aim is to detect known and unknown threats by identifying and analysing incidents outside of the established trusted and tolerated corporate applications and environments.
The key benefit of an EDR solution is that it provides analysts within the IT Security team with information enabling them to fortify and thereby improve their security posture by mitigating the risk of future attacks. However this inevitably requires the organisation to have dedicated cybersecurity resources within the IT department to ensure the benefit and investment in the solution can be maximised.
EDR vs XDR
XDR is the next stage in next-generation endpoint protection … with the ‘X’ representing any data source. XDR considers that an organisation’s attack surface involves all enforcement points in the cybersecurity ecosystem: network, endpoint and cloud.
By providing visibility of data and activity across the entire security infrastructure (rather than just endpoints) XDR enables faster detection of threats thus enabling IT security teams to investigate and respond quicker.
Get in touch with us about determining the best endpoint solution for your organisation’s needs.