Microsoft Renames Windows Defender to Microsoft Defender Reflecting it's new Cross-Platform Focus starting with macOS
Microsoft announced today that their Windows Defender is history as it's being replaced by "Microsoft Defender." But it's not only a name change, it's a completely new focus on delivering IT teams with a cross-platform version that will eventually cover Linux, iOS, Android and macOS which will be the first new version to be tested. Microsoft Defender's Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) for macOS is now in limited preview.
If you did a double-take here because you thought it was called Windows Defender, you’re not wrong. Microsoft is extending its endpoint protection platform to additional operating systems, starting with macOS. And so, with the release of Microsoft Defender ATP for Mac in limited preview, Windows Defender is now Microsoft Defender.
Microsoft Defender ATP gives macOS users 'next-gen' antivirus protection, but Microsoft is also promising to add Endpoint Detection and Response, and Threat and Vulnerability Management (TVM) capabilities in public preview next month. TVM is designed to help security teams discover, prioritize, and remediate known vulnerabilities and misconfigurations exploited by hackers. Specifically, TVM promises:
- Real-time detection insights correlated with endpoint vulnerabilities
- Machine vulnerability context during incident investigations
- Built-in remediation processes through integration with Microsoft Intune and Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager
Microsoft’s security pitch is for a 'comprehensive' platform with 'built-in sensors, cloud scalability, unparalleled optics, AI & machine learning-based protection to enhance the power of defenders, and the seamless integration with Microsoft’s identity and information protection solutions.' Now the company can add cross-platform to that list.
Today's VB report covers other Microsoft updates released today including Windows Virtual Desktop, Office 365 ProPlus and Windows 10 and Configuration Manager, Intune, and Microsoft 365.
Engadget added that "With a rise in malware incidents in recent years, macOS is starting to look decidedly less immune to attacks than it once did. With that in mind, it seems Microsoft may be on to something with its Defender cross-platform expansion. It should also, theoretically, make life easier for IT admins that handle both Windows and Mac systems. Alas, there's no word on whether general users will get a consumer version in the future."
IT leaders could sign up for the "Preview Program, Microsoft Defender ATP for Mac" here. More detailed information about Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection with a series of videos could be reviewed here.
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