Endpoint security is the practice of protecting an enterprise’s network by securing its endpoints against cyberattacks.
Endpoint security focuses on protecting an organization’s network against cyberattacks by securing its endpoints—including employees’ connected computers, smartphones and even smart watches. Endpoint security protects business systems, intellectual property (IP), customer data and employees’ devices from ransomware, malware, phishing and other cyberthreats.
Because endpoints serve as users’ points of access to an organization’s network, they are also potential entry points for malicious actors. Endpoint security ensures the network is protected against compromise and data theft—even if an employee’s device is lost or stolen.
Endpoint security includes cybersecurity solutions such as endpoint protection (EPP), endpoint detection and response (EDR), mobile threat defense (MTD), identity access management (IAM), extended detection and response (XDR) as well as antivirus and firewall services.
BENEFITS OF ENDPOINT SECURITY
Endpoint Security Features
Endpoint security should protect all end users’ devices from cyberthreats. Any connected device or system that provides access to an enterprise’s network can be a potential point of entry for a cyberattack. An endpoint security solution should include:
- Continuous monitoring, ideally powered by advanced artificial intelligence (AI) including machine learning, to analyze files and block malware before it executes—whether the endpoint is online or offline
- Protection against email-based cyberthreats via scanning and quarantining of emails containing potentially dangerous links and attachments
- Centralized device management with control over which and how devices can access, download and upload data
- Protection against malicious downloads from the web
- Anti-exploit protection against zero-day vulnerabilities and memory-based cyberattacks
- Behavioral monitoring with machine learning capabilities to authenticate authorized users and block bad actors
- Data loss protection and remediation to prevent unintentional or intentional loss of data in the event of a cyberattack
- Third-party software integrations to work with an enterprise’s technology stack, including complementary security solutions and tools
- Dashboards, reports and alerts with prioritized warnings of vulnerabilities
- Automated incident response including rapid detection, investigation and remediation
HOW ENDPOINT SECURITY WORKS
Endpoint security involves preparing for, preventing, detecting and responding to cyberattacks occurring at an organization’s network endpoints—typically, users’ devices. An endpoint security solution should help to:
- Prepare an enterprise for IT outages, ransomware lockouts and business disruptions before they happen
- Prevent internal threats and data security risks effectively and efficiently
- Detect security breaches and suspicious behavior as fast as possible
- Respond quickly via automation to protect the business and mitigate risks
Although the different types of endpoint security tools work in unique ways, they all scan and analyze files for cyberthreats, limiting their ability to execute and infiltrate the network. Typically, endpoint security solutions involve a centralized console managed by system administrators or IT departments and client software installed on users’ devices. This client software authenticates user logins from the devices and blocks the use or execution of unsafe applications or the misuse of company data.
Advanced endpoint security solutions are cloud-based or a combination of on-premises and cloud-based (hybrid) and leverage AI and machine learning to proactively monitor for and adapt to each endpoint’s cyberthreats in real time.
Types of Endpoint Security
What Is Meant by Endpoint Security?
What Are the Types of Endpoint Security?
Endpoint security includes cybersecurity solutions such as endpoint protection (EPP), endpoint detection and response (EDR), mobile threat defense (MTD), identity access management (IAM) and extended detection and response (XDR) as well as antivirus and firewall services.
Why Is Endpoint Security Important?
Endpoint security is critical to ensure against the theft or loss of enterprise and customer data, avoid costs associated with recovering from a cyberattack, relieve IT departments of the burden of monitoring for and addressing cyberthreats and comply with government and industry regulations.
What Is the Difference Between Endpoint Security and Network Security?
Both endpoint security and network security are practices for protecting an enterprise’s network from cyberthreats. Endpoint security solutions focus on detecting and addressing cyberattacks at their access points—typically, user devices—and network security is more general, inclusive of endpoint security.
What Is the Difference Between Endpoint Security and Antivirus?
Antivirus solutions are typically designed to protect a single endpoint, such as a computer or device, and generally intended for individual consumers. In comparison, endpoint security solutions are intended for larger enterprises to secure networks and connected devices.