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Advanced Threat Protection | The Difference Between Azure, Microsoft 365, and Defender

Advanced Threat Protection | The Difference Between Azure, Microsoft 365, and Defender

Microsoft Advanced Threat Protection Tools
Posted by TEAM ASCEND on 9/16/20 10:57 AM

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With various Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) tools offered through Microsoft, it's essential to know their features and how each matches your security needs. Let's look at what ATP is and its differences and benefits between Azure, Microsoft 365, and Microsoft Defender.


What is Advanced Threat Protection (ATP)?

Advanced threat protection is a set of strategies and technologies designed to proactively detect, investigate, and protect an organization's networks and systems from sophisticated cyber threats such as zero-day attacks, ransomware, advanced persistent threats, and other malicious activities. These strategies and technologies can include endpoint security solutions, network security solutions, artificial intelligence-powered analytics, threat intelligence, and more. Advanced threat protection helps to identify, analyze, and respond quickly to malicious activities, reducing the risk of data breaches and other security incidents.

Using advanced threat protection (ATP) is essential for businesses in today's digital world. With cybersecurity threats becoming more sophisticated, organizations must be prepared. ATP helps organizations save money and resources by helping to identify and eliminate the need for expensive manual investigations. It also gives teams visibility and understanding of the malicious activity inside their networks, allowing for better decision-making and an improved security posture.


Azure ATP 

Azure ATP is focused primarily on identity security, protecting your on-premises Entra ID (formerly known as Active Directory) users. It's designed to become familiar with user behavior across devices and applications to be able to identify malicious activities that deviate from those norms. Fortunately, in being so accustomed to the original, the counterfeit stands out like a sore thumb. 

Azure ATP also helps you manage privileged accounts, a common target for malicious attacks. By providing visibility into the use of privileged accounts, monitoring access to sensitive resources, and detecting suspicious activity, it helps you enforce policies and reduce the risk of privileged access abuse.

Additionally, Azure's ATP provides helpful security recommendations to improve configurations based on industry best practices and further customizes those recommendations for your environment. These recommendations help you to enhance the security of your identities to make user profile compromises much more challenging. With breaches always on the rise, every improvement is essential.

Azure ATP Highlights:

  • On-Premises Entra ID Protection

  • Privileged Account Management
  • Security Recommendations


Microsoft 365 ATP

Microsoft 365 ATP aims to protect users from malicious activity via messaging platforms. With a Plan 1 license applied, your messages go under the magnifying glass. If you're sent malicious links or attachments in email or chat, M365 ATP protects you. Links are masked, and attachments are tested for safety.

Microsoft 365 ATP enforces comprehensive anti-phishing policies to protect your organization. Using machine learning algorithms, M365's ATP can analyze emails for malicious links/attachments, suspicious messages, and untrustworthy senders. It also provides detailed reports on the malicious activities detected inside the network, which include detailed information about the threat, such as the source, target, and type of attack. Additionally, it provides a timeline of the attack and step-by-step instructions to help organizations investigate and remediate the incident.

Microsoft 365 ATP Highlights:

  • Email Protection
  • Anti-Phishing Policy Enforcement
  • Detailed Reporting & Attack Timeline


Microsoft Defender ATP 

Microsoft Defender ATP is aimed at endpoint detection and response. Windows comes with the Defender product, but Defender ATP takes things to a whole new level. With the Threat & Vulnerability Management dashboard, you obtain visibility into vulnerabilities and misconfigurations on your systems. In addition, the Security Operations dashboard shows you active alerts and suspicious activities that may need action. 

Defender ATP can detect and respond to attacks by detecting activities that are not typical for the device. Additionally, with alert and log correlation technology, you can act on threats by isolating machines or quarantining files to block them from your network. It is licensed per user, but it covers up to 5 concurrent devices for that user.

Microsoft Defender ATP Highlights:

  • Endpoint Protection
  • Threat & Vulnerability Management Dashboard
  • Alert & Log Correlation Technology


Ascend Can Help

Whether the threat comes from an email, a brute force login attempt, or PC malware, there's an ATP solution to address it. If you want to discuss security solutions that protect you and your organization, reach out to speak with an expert. We are happy to help!

Check out more cybersecurity articles for helpful breakdowns of complex concepts and security tips from experts.

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Posted in Microsoft, Cloud & Infrastructure