What is EDR, and Why My Business Needs One?
Your organization already has antivirus and a firewall in place; what more could you need? It’s tempting to think that having those tools are enough to help you sleep soundly, knowing your entire network is protected.
Unfortunately, cyber threats continue to grow in complexity and sophistication. It's either you keep up or suffer the consequences. Threat actors can penetrate both antivirus and firewalls with a well-constructed phishing email or social engineering trick. That means cybercriminals are already privy that you likely have defenses in place and are already trying to make their way around it.
So, how do you protect your network once hackers get through your first line of defense? That’s where Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR) solutions come in.
At ITS, we’ve helped hundreds of businesses bolster their cybersecurity efforts. From our experience, EDR is a vital piece of the cybersecurity puzzle. To help you understand why you need one, we’ll discuss the following topics:
- What is EDR?
- Why Do I Need EDR?
What is EDR?
Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR) is an integrated endpoint security solution that combines real-time continuous monitoring and collection of endpoint data. It uses its rules-based automated response and analysis capabilities to monitor activity data that might indicate a threat.
“EDR effectively replaces antivirus and is just better than the next generation antivirus,” said Rob Schenk, our partner from ITS San Francisco.
Simply put, while your firewall and antivirus are trying to prevent intruders from breaking into your network, EDR watches for threats lurking inside it. It monitors all the devices connected to your network, looking for any suspicious activity.
EDR tools can also analyze the data to identify patterns and automatically respond to threats by either removing or containing them or alerting security personnel. They can also be used as forensics tools to help you investigate how an attack occurred.
Why Do You Need EDR?
Implementing EDR security can bring a lot of advantages to your organization. Here are a few of the major benefits you can get:
Prevents Data Breaches
Many small business owners underestimate the value of their data. However, a data breach has the potential to be a very costly affair that could cripple organizations. In a study by IBM and the Ponemon Institute, they found that the average cost of a data breach in 2021 is $4.24 million, a 10% rise from their 2020 findings. A staggering amount, especially for a small business.
What’s worse is that the number of incidents is continuing to increase. According to the Identity Theft Resource Center (ITRC), the number of data breaches reported in 2021 exceeded the total for 2020. And, those numbers only count the ones that were publicly reported, not the ones that went under the radar.
An EDR can help prevent that. A sophisticated EDR system has the capability to detect threats in real-time, allowing you to stop a breach immediately.
Detects Threats that Go Unnoticed
In many of the most high-profile cyber-attacks recorded in the past few years, the cybercriminals were hiding in plain sight for weeks or even months. They establish footholds within your network and bide their time, trying to evade detection and planning their next move.
In IBM’s Cost of a Data Breach report, it was revealed that the average time it took for companies to identify a breach in their network was 207 days. It also took them 73 days to fully contain it, bringing the total “lifecycle” to around 280 days. That’s a lot of time for a cybercriminal to scope your vulnerabilities and do some serious damage.
An EDR is equipped to detect threats that tend to go unnoticed. It utilizes advanced analytics that can pick up unusual behavioral patterns that might indicate a security breach. It can then alert relevant personnel, allowing you more time to detect and contain a possible breach.
Accelerates Incident Response
When it comes to containing a breach, time is essential. It can help prevent an attacker from wreaking havoc in your network or mitigate the damage.
An EDR solution can keep track of all interactions between devices in your network, allowing your incident response plan to kick in faster. It also provides real-time visibility across all endpoints, tracking events and processes like logins, registry modifications, and network connections. That will allow your team to investigate any suspicious activity immediately and buy them time to contain a breach.
Allows for Proactive Threat Hunting
With an antivirus, you have to wait for an alert before your incident response plan kicks in. Having to wait for a threat to pop up and notify your team is one of the biggest reasons why some breaches go undetected for months.
However, with a sophisticated EDR system, you can proactively hunt for threats in your network by monitoring for strange behavior, suspicious activity, and other threat indicators across all endpoints. That gives your cybersecurity team enough information on whether to investigate further, possibly preventing an attack from turning into a breach.
Simplifies Endpoint Management
EDR solutions allow your incident response team to detect, identify and contain threats from a single centralized platform. That means it doesn’t matter where the device is located; your security team can respond to a potential attack or breach.
Some automated EDR processes can help minimize the workload of detecting and responding to threats. It allows your security team to save time and resources as it reduces the need to constantly monitor multiple tools and dashboards. That also helps make for a more integrated security information and event management (SIEM) system.
Ready to Setup an EDR for Your Workplace?
EDR solutions offer a lot of benefits that can improve how you detect and respond to cyber incidents. It not only helps you enhance your cybersecurity, but it can also save you time, money, and resources. A robust security system requires multiple layers of protection, and an EDR solution is a vital part of that.
At ITS, we’ve helped our clients choose and implement sophisticated cybersecurity tools like EDR. Download our e-book to find out the three types of cyber solutions your business must have to improve network security.