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June 13, 2023

What is EDR? Endpoint Detection and Response

With AI and machine learning at the forefront of new technologies, it was only a matter of time before it was implemented into the cybersecurity world. With traditional antivirus software falling short and an increasing need for faster reactions to malware a new solution was created – Endpoint Detection Response, or EDR. But what is EDR, and how does it work?

What is EDR?

EDR, or Endpoint Detection and Response, is an IT security solution that uses analytics and data techniques to identify suspicious behavior on an “endpoint”, a device on a network system, and block it. Essentially, EDR allows devices to self-defend against cyber threats through the use of machine learning and artificial intelligence which monitors activities and events that occur on a device. EDR is capable of learning what system activities and behaviors are “normal” and then identify suspicious system behaviors and block them. It also can suggest steps to remedy any further damage that may have been done to the network due to the malicious software.

How Does EDR Compare to Antivirus Software?

The main difference between EDR and antivirus software is how threats are detected on the device. Antivirus software works by scanning system files for malicious software, warns the user about any software found, and then attempts to remove it. However, scans take place during scheduled intervals set up by users or network administrators and occur only as often as they are set up. EDR on the other hand is constantly scanning files in real time and is learning about normal system behavior on the endpoint it’s installed on which allows it to identify even fileless attacks on the device. This provides a huge advantage over antivirus software, as antivirus software is only able to identify viruses and malicious software, not fileless attacks.

Benefits of EDR

Now that you understand what EDR is, and a little bit about how it works, what are the key benefits of it? In short, EDR is a bigger and better version of antivirus software solutions, and being AI driven, it certainly packs a punch. Below are some of the key benefits of endpoint detection and response:

  • EDR doesn’t rely on signature updates or scheduled scans to function
  • AI and machine learning are used to detect threats
  • EDR responds locally on devices if threats are discovered
  • EDR is able to detect malicious traffic and fileless attacks as well as viruses and malicious software
  • EDR constantly monitors the system in real time allowing for faster reactions to cyber threats

Final Thoughts

EDR is a powerful cybersecurity solution that transcends antivirus software with the use of real time monitoring, AI, and machine learning. Cyber security threats are going nowhere anytime soon, and EDR is a great way to be proactive and protected in the never-ending battle. Of course, as with any cyber security solution, there is no “one and done” approach to it. Although EDR is a strong solution, policies and other measures need to be taken to ensure that your privacy and data are secure in the online world.

If you have any questions or want to learn about more ways to stay safe online, feel free to contact our IT staff at the link below.

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Sources: Microsoft | Crowdstrike

About the author: Ryan Baars

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