Endpoint detection and response (EDR) is a compelling cyber protection solution included in many corporate IT security professionals’ tool stacks. According to the Gartner Hype Cycle for Security Operations, 2023, EDR products reached the technology lifecycle phase known as “the Slope of Enlightenment.” This indicates that many organizations, varying in both size and sophistication, use the solution effectively.
In the Acronis Mid-year Cyberthreats Report, roughly 1 out of every 10 threats that successfully breached an endpoint, our statistics revealed a high percentage of clients encountered at least one malware attack successfully blocked on their endpoints. These findings were based on real-world endpoint detections and suggest that any proxy or email protection applied earlier in the attack chain was rendered ineffective against preventing these threats. This means that despite email security awareness training and patching efforts, our clients faced active threats that circumvented perimeter security measures and were detected by EDR — underpinning today’s necessity for EDR solutions.
In this article, we explore EDR in detail, compare the differences between EDR and anti-malware, cover the benefits of EDR, and share our predictions on the future of EDR.
What is EDR?
Endpoint detection and response (EDR) is an active security solution that enables teams to identify, investigate and respond to ongoing attacks, compromises and breaches. The core features of EDR empower organizations to more effectively detect, contain, investigate and remediate cyber incidents. EDR also helps organizations maintain regulatory compliance and qualify for cyber insurance by demonstrating measures to handle cyber intrusions.
Why businesses are targeted by cyberthreats
Adversaries are motivated by monetary gain, and seek to steal, exploit, alter or destroy valuable data. As attackers become more adept at exploiting vulnerabilities in IT environments and AI equips more threat actors to launch advanced attacks (like APTs), traditional antivirus systems have become ineffective at detecting advanced malicious activities and, overall, are less effective at countering an array of threats as attacks grow in sophistication.
This has led to a surge in demand for advanced security measures, including EDR, that can detect complex threats to minimize cost and damage by detecting and blocking threats before a breach.
Key benefits of EDR for businesses
There are several distinct benefits that all organizations can gain from EDR. The solution gives organizations confidence to counter imminent threats and rapidly respond to ongoing incidents. The benefits of modern-day corporate EDR such as Acronis Cyber Protect that includes EDR feature, include:
Detecting and preventing threats before a breach
Enhanced threat detection provides businesses with increased visibility and protection of their data and systems. Robust detection engines empower businesses to prevent common threats altogether, and therefore, IT security professionals can collectively skip incident investigations that don’t require in-depth analysis. This enables organizations to conserve resources and save time by reallocating security expertise and budget toward more pressing issues and initiatives.
Today’s EDR uses cutting-edge technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML), to continuously monitor endpoints for suspicious activity, enabling businesses to detect and respond to threats more quickly. Enhanced detection rates ensure that security teams can rapidly identify attacks that bypass traditional endpoint security layers, including anti-malware. This enables security professionals to seamlessly and quickly detect unknown, known, new and developing threats.
Rapid response before adversaries can do damage
EDR collects security-relevant telemetry from endpoints and system logs that are critical to helping security professionals detect anomalies and suspicious behavior and drive well-informed incident response activities. Fast response is paramount to reducing the impact of an attack and mitigating breach costs, including recovery, fines, reporting, public relations assistance and security reinforcement expenses. For example, Acronis Cyber Protect EDR provides rapid and holistic response in a single click, including recovery and attack-specific rollback.
Maintaining compliance and meeting cyber insurance requirements
EDR solutions provide organizations with comprehensive visibility into their security posture by actively identifying unauthorized access and other malicious activity. Prioritized visibility into incidents concerning sensitive and easy reporting capabilities help organizations satisfy regulatory compliance and avoid expensive violation penalties. For instance, Acronis EDR provides streamlined analysis and empowers security professionals to quickly report incidents involving sensitive data — while maintaining regulatory compliance.
Cyber insurance underwriters look for endpoint protection controls, such as EDR, as a prerequisite for qualification. Acronis Cyber Protect enables businesses to meet cyber insurance criteria for EDR and, more importantly, to satisfy backup data encryption requirements. As cyberattacks become more prolific and costly, insurers are imposing increasingly stringent conditions on organizations needing to qualify for a policy. This is especially true when it comes to the use, storage and transmission of sensitive data.
Additionally, Acronis helps businesses qualify for cyber insurance by taking a multilayer cyber protection approach that includes EDR, vulnerability assessment and patch management, behavioral-based anti-malware, a programmatic backup and disaster recovery plan and incident response plan. The integrated solution combines cybersecurity and data protection and management.
Comprehensive protection without juggling point solutions
The typical company utilizes an average of 76 security tools, leading to solution sprawl. With worldwide security talent shortages, it’s not only difficult to manage various single-purpose tools, but also expensive for most resource-constrained businesses. Acronis EDR helps organizations consolidate their security tech stack by integrating cybersecurity, data protection and endpoint management — enabling you to launch, scale and manage a multitude of services from a single pane of glass.
How EDR is deployed in large corporations
Many resource-rich enterprises operate a security operations center (SOC) team to analyze and respond to EDR-generated data. SOCs fulfill several responsibilities related to handling security incidents. These include incident investigation, prioritization, triage and response activities. There are several key features that large enterprise SOCs look for in EDR. The primary features include:
Scalability and integration
An EDR that’s cloud native and offers centralized management and tight or native integration with other compulsory security capabilities, empowers large businesses to seamlessly scale security as their IT infrastructure grows, so ensuring that an EDR will integrate with existing tools and practices is essential.
Customization and advanced reporting
A cloud-managed EDR also lets security professionals provision, customize and fine-tune protection. IT security professionals will benefit from an EDR that seamlessly lets them adjust security policies and continuously improve other aligned, proactive, active and reactive security measures. EDR lessens cyber risk, satisfies compliance regulators and offers post-incident analysis reporting for regulatory purposes. With Acronis EDR, businesses can retrieve and schedule reports with information-rich widgets that streamline visibility companywide and provide key details on detection and response.
Additionally, enterprise-grade EDR enables SOCs and security experts to manage endpoint security at scale, spanning cross-functional departments and companywide. The solution gives security teams the flexibility to provision, manage and configure protection per endpoint, per group or across the entire organization’s devices.
Bridging the gap: Adapting corporate EDR solutions for your business
Small and medium size businesses (SMBs) grapple with limited resources, security talent and bandwidth. Despite these challenges, SMBs similarly benefit from advanced detection of complex threats. For resource-counterstained teams, the key aspects in an EDR that SMBs should look for include:
Streamlining endpoint protection processes to address business needs and reduce cost
A single platform solution can help a small business eliminate cost toward siloed tools. EDR has been added to Acronis Cyber Protect and is an integral, new part of a compelling set of integrated technologies, including anti-malware, anti-ransomware, endpoint management, security and backup and recovery in a single platform. The solution eliminates the need to purchase separate, single-focus tools for endpoint protection, saving time and money.
Actionable, contextual alerts
The Acronis Cyber Protection Operation Center team releases actionable and contextual alerts in our threat feed to help IT professionals stay informed on the latest threats, search for indicators of compromise and follow recommended actions such as increasing the frequency of performing backups, patching vulnerabilities and other best practices.
Near-zero false positive rate
Acronis EDR has been tested and proven to have near-zero false positives by industry-leading third-party evaluations in endpoint protection. This enables IT security to reduce alert fatigue and focus on primary objectives. Additionally, AI and ML capabilities in Acronis EDR help prioritize incidents.
Simplified incident analysis
AI-based incident summaries and attack interpretations mapped to MITRE ATT&CK stages help streamline incident analysis for IT security technicians. Faster incident analysis helps expedite response activities and reduce downtime for the business.
The current and future trends: EDR for businesses
Security professionals find themselves overwhelmed with high volumes of alerts that ping from individual, siloed tools. Although point solutions adequately stop threats, they are resource intensive and time consuming to manage. We see organizations shifting toward vendor consolidation, and the demand for accessible, cost-effective EDR continues to surge.
What does this mean for the future of EDR?
According to the latest predictions in our Cyberthreats Report, generative AI will continue to change the game in the way adversaries craft attacks. We expect to see a surge in AI-powered phishing attacks, deepfake exploitation, misuse of QR codes to evade multifactor authentication, and living off the land attacks. To counter dynamic and complex attacks, we forecast a growing need for consolidation and automation across organizational technology stacks — saving businesses time and money. Notably, the trends may shift toward developing a more holistic approach to cybersecurity that expands beyond threats at the endpoint level.
Explore Acronis EDR and comprehensive cyber protection
Acronis EDR Security consolidates vendor lists to save organizations valuable time and money, by not only detecting, blocking and remediating threats, but also safeguarding business continuity. By removing cost and complexity barriers, the integrated solution enables businesses to scale and simplify holistic protection despite proliferating threats. Request a trial and see Acronis EDR in action for yourself!
Acronis leverages a unique approach to consolidating cybersecurity, data protection and management in a single pane of glass and easy-to-use console. The solution empowers businesses to satisfy regulatory compliance, qualify for cyber insurance, reduce cyber risk and fortify business resilience against today’s modern threats. Explore Acronis Cyber Protect today!
Acronis is a Swiss company, founded in Singapore. Celebrating two decades of innovation, Acronis has more than 1,800 employees in 45 locations. The Acronis Cyber Protect Cloud solution is available in 26 languages in over 150 countries and is used by 20,000 service providers to protect over 750,000 businesses.