Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) solutions provide additional layers of security to help your organization detect and respond to various threats. ATP solutions should enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of the cybersecurity space and may include identities, endpoints, applications, networks, and cloud services.
Advanced threat protection combats today’s sophisticated threats by adopting an integrated security strategy that utilizes multiple technologies applied throughout the attack cycle and the organization.
What are advanced threats?
Advanced cyber-attacks or sophisticated cyber threats are characterized by their stealth, allowing them to avoid detection and infect your computer with advanced software like malware, ransomware, trojans, or rootkits.
These cyber-attacks are configured to be more advanced than security measures to protect them. Advanced threats are also targeted, which means they are tailored to a specific computer or user.
An attacker will study your browsing habits, the pages you visit, and your downloads and develop an advanced threat to target a particular vulnerability.
Hackers no longer dwell in the dark; instead, they gain a deeper understanding of the purpose before launching their attack. Here’s what an advanced threat can do:
- Unprecedented levels of sophistication and complexity are illustrated using automated phishing tools, crypto mining software, and other tactics;
- They have the ability to take advantage of zero-day vulnerabilities;
- They can mimic normal user behavior to avoid reporting.
Advanced threat protection solutions are designed to proactively identify threats and proactively target valuable data on your infrastructure. The three essential functions of ATP solutions are:
- provide early detection to help prevent or identify breaches
- protection of identities, applications, networks, endpoints, or cloud infrastructure
- offer an advanced set of tools, using machine learning and artificial intelligence, for security analysts to identify and respond to identified threats
Effective threat detection solutions must provide organizations with real-time data, respond to threats, and access a wide-ranging global threat intelligence network to provide context for attacks.
Why is threat protection important?
The reason threat protection is essential lies in the frequency of cyber attacks in the corporate sector and the general lack of cyber security preparedness in all industries. ATP solutions and services are important due to the fact that they deliver on three fronts:
ATP solutions should identify suspicious and malicious behavior in real-time using a variety of sensors, threat intelligence, and tools. You need to be able to monitor and identify security threats and report them to the vulnerability management to process behavior monitoring.
This information should then be recorded and analyzed for internal and external attacks, with analysis supported by a range of technologies, including machine learning, behavioral research, and multiple sources of intelligence threats.
Threat identification and isolation
Perhaps the most fundamental requirement for any ATP solution is identifying and isolating new and potential threats. Once the threat has been identified, the ATP solution should work in three ways.
First, mitigate the threat before it disrupts the systems or stops/disrupts the attack if it is already ongoing.
Second, to respond and neutralize actions that have already occurred as part of the breach. And third, to end the life cycle of the attack and prevent it from continuing.
Furthermore, Microsoft Defender ATP combines Windows 10 features and services running in the Microsoft cloud. As such, there is nothing to install and no hardware requirements outside Windows 10.
Windows Defender ATP is available with Windows 10 Enterprise R2 and Windows 10 Education E5. In either case, a volume license is required.
For good security effectiveness, threat alerts must be contextualized to enable security teams to prioritize threats and effectively determine the appropriate response.
Security incident warnings, investigations, and reactions must be coordinated and timely. It means having dedicated cybersecurity staff to manage them or using a specialized service provider to handle the ongoing monitoring, analysis and response needed to benefit from the ATP solution.
Numerous security professionals are revealing new and emerging threats, and therefore it requires in-depth investigative work in the operating systems for security admins to initiate an automated investigation of the software inventory.
One thing most ATP solutions have in common is the amount of “noise” they generate.
How to achieve advanced threat protection
Implement cyber security policies to minimize risk
Cybersecurity policies are necessary to minimize risk and mitigation efforts, as they regulate how all of your staff should respond to a variety of digital security issues.
Here are some examples of guidelines that every company should follow:
- Password hygiene
- Bring your device
- Browsing habits
- Incident response
- Data confidentiality
Provide cyber security education to your employees
Thus, your next step in threat protection should be to provide your employees with cybersecurity education opportunities relevant to the industry and their position. The main topics you need to address with this are:
- How to recognize malicious links;
- How to spot malicious attachments in email;
- How to identify attempts at imitation;
- How to browse smartly and avoid infected pages;
- And how to deal with their responsibilities when it comes to data confidentiality.
For instance, the most recognized company that develops virtual machines, VMware, also encourages its customers to start employing a proper VMware backup strategy.
Integrate a complete suite of cyber security solutions
Here’s what you need to do to stop hackers:
- Predictive artificial intelligence-driven DNS filtering;
- Patch and asset management;
- Privileged access management;
- And next-generation antivirus with integrated firewall and mobile device management;
- Email protection;
- Prevent Ransomware encryption;
- And network security.
Whether deployed and managed internally or as a fully managed service, advanced threat protection solutions have shifted from optional to mainstream and, for many, are a vital component of their cyber security technical measures.
Businesses that use ATP solutions are at lower risk of becoming a victim of a successful cyber attack than those that do not provide the solution that is appropriately managed. They are more likely to detect threats early, respond to ongoing attacks, and recover from breaches.
A cyber security service provider (advanced threat protection ultimate solution) will manage the threats in real-time and notify the relevant parties of potential and actual attacks and their severity.