Cisco Umbrella vs Microsoft Defender for Cloud Apps comparison

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Comparison Buyer's Guide
Executive Summary
Updated on Jul 12, 2022

We performed a comparison between Cisco Umbrella and Microsoft Defender for Cloud Apps based on our users’ reviews in five categories. After reading all of the collected data, you can find our conclusion below.

  • Ease of Deployment: Users of both solutions say that their initial setup is straightforward.
  • Features: Users of both products are happy with their stability and scalability. Cisco Umbrella users say it is robust, easy to use, flexible, and has good reporting tools. Several Cisco Umbrella users note that they would like better integration options. Microsoft Defender users say that it integrates well with other applications and has good monitoring features. A few Microsoft Defender users mention that the solution’s reporting process is complex.

  • Pricing: Most reviewers of both products feel that their prices are high.

  • ROI: Reviewers of both solutions report seeing an ROI.
  • Service and Support: Cisco Umbrella reviewers report being very satisfied with the level of support they receive. Some Microsoft Defender reviewers report being satisfied with the support but others feel there is room for improvement.

Comparison Results: Cisco Umbrella comes out on top in this comparison. It is easy to use and high performing. In addition, Cisco Umbrella’s support received better marks than Microsoft Defender’s.

To learn more, read our detailed Cisco Umbrella vs. Microsoft Defender for Cloud Apps Report (Updated: November 2022).
656,474 professionals have used our research since 2012.
Featured Review
Quotes From Members
We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use.
Here are some excerpts of what they said:
Pricing and Cost Advice
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  • "There is a subscription cost."
  • "The price could be lower."
  • "The price is quite good."
  • "Pricing depends on the automation requirements of the organization."
  • "It has a reasonable price. It is certainly not as expensive as it used to be. It is in line with other offerings on the market. There are a number of different flavors of Umbrella. They could bring Umbrella SIG down a bit because its price is a little bit high for what it does, but I also understand why its price is high."
  • "Cisco Umbrella is expensive and could be cheaper."
  • "When talking about Cisco solutions in general there pricing model is horrible. For example, you can sell a Meraki-based solution, but if the customer starts shopping around, someone is going to have access to the pricing at a level that you cannot compete because they do not have uniform pricing. Not everybody gets fair pricing. Unless you are one of the real major corporations selling the solution your ability to compete is impossible. Cisco will acknowledge the situation and assure you next time it will be in your favor but it never becomes favorable for you. Cisco is not very good in this regard. However, Umbrella is good."
  • "The licensing fee is paid on a yearly basis."
  • More Cisco Umbrella Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "Our clients normally use the Microsoft E1 licensing, which is renewed yearly."
  • "The pricing is a little bit high but right now, we are okay with it because of the compatibility with Office 365, Teams, and Azure AD."
  • "I'm not totally involved in the pricing part, but I think its pricing is quite aggressive, and its price is quite similar to Netskope. Netskope has separate licensing fees or additional charges if you want to monitor certain SaaS services, whereas, with MCAS, you get 5,000 applications with their Office 365. It is all bundled, and there's no cost for using that. You only have the operational costs. In the country I am in, it is a bit difficult to get people with the required skill sets."
  • "Its pricing is on the higher side. Its price is definitely very high for a small-scale company. As an enterprise client, we do get benefits from Microsoft. We get a discounted price because of the number of users we have in our company. We have a premier package, and with that, we do get a lot of discounts. There are no additional costs. It only comes in the top-tier packages. Generally, the top-tier license is the best license that you can get for your organization. If you want, you can buy it separately, but that's not a good idea."
  • "The price could be better and should be reconsidered."
  • "It is a little bit expensive. When you want to have the complete package with Office 365, Defender, and everything else, it is expensive."
  • "We are an MST and we do not pay for the solution. However, the price of the solution could be better."
  • "The cost could be improved when you need to pay for anything. For example, refreshing files takes time to load, though it may be my Internet. To improve the refresh time, Microsoft says that we need to pay for a Premium license, and I don't like paying for things that help make a solution better."
  • More Microsoft Defender for Cloud Apps Pricing and Cost Advice →

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    Questions from the Community
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    Top Answer: Cisco Umbrella and Zscaler Internet Access are two broad-spectrum Internet security solutions that I have tried.… more »
    Top Answer:Cisco Umbrella is an integral component of the Cisco SASE architecture. It integrates security in a single, cloud-native… more »
    Top Answer:The single-pane-of-glass management is really important. In today's era, administration costs and operational expenses… more »
    Top Answer:In Microsoft Defender for Cloud Apps, there is an option to enable files. Once you enable that, it will give you all the… more »
    Top Answer:The E5 license offers everything bundled. People are moving to Microsoft because you buy one license and it gives you… more »
    Top Answer:The visibility it provides is quite good. You get all the logs for investigation purposes. But there should be more… more »
    Comparisons
    Also Known As
    OpenDNS
    MS Cloud App Security, Microsoft Cloud App Security
    Learn More
    Lookout
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    Overview

    Lookout is a well-established and powerful secure web gateway (SWG) solution that protects more than 200 million users from threats that can result from the penetration of unsecured web traffic into their networks. Lookout is designed to enable organizations to work remotely while maintaining a tight blanket of security over their confidential business data. It provides administrators with security that extends from their endpoints to the cloud service that they are using to run their organization’s network. 

    Users of Lookout are able to proactively detect threats and keep themselves secure from a field of threats that constantly evolves. IT teams can protect their organizations without having to rely on any other security solutions. This singular solution can run on multiple kinds of mobile devices. The privacy of individuals is preserved while keeping compliance rules intact. Additionally, users gain access to a number of tools that enable them to prevent security breaches from taking place.

    Lookout Benefits

    Some of the ways that organizations can benefit by deploying Lookout include:

    • Ease of deployment. Lookout is a solution whose design makes it easy for users to deploy it. It provides users with simple, step-by-step instructions that remove the need for organizations to devote extensive amounts of time to make sure that it is properly set up. Anyone can quickly set up the solution without undergoing technical training. 
    • Built-in support. Users of the Lookout application have access to built-in demos that can teach them how to use various solution features. Instead of spending time trying to figure out the application, users can watch the demo that is most relevant to them and see for themselves how that particular feature is used.
    • Easy-to-use user interface. Lookout’s user interface is laid out in an intuitive way that makes it easy for administrators to navigate. This interface is present in both the mobile and desktop versions of this solution. 
    • Settings customization. Lookout has a built-in settings customization menu. This makes it possible for administrators to easily customize their settings so that they best conform to their needs. 

    Lookout Features

    • Activity monitoring and activity tracking. Lookout’s activity monitoring and activity tracking capabilities enable users to keep a close eye on the activities that are taking place in their networks. IT teams and administrators have the ability to watch their networks for any unusual activity. These features ensure that organizations can keep ahead of any potential threats. They provide the kinds of insights and warnings that make the jobs of those IT teams and administrators much easier and more streamlined. 
    • Encryption. Organizations that employ Lookout can encrypt their networks and keep crucial business data from being read by unauthorized parties. This feature keeps the secrets organizations are trying to keep out of the wrong hands.
    • Anti-virus tools. Lookout provides users with tools to block threats from harming their networks. These tools can successfully block 99.6 percent of threats without raising false alarms. 

    Cisco Umbrella offers flexible, cloud-delivered security according to users’ requirements Cisco Umbrella includes secure web gateway, firewall, and cloud access security broker (CASB) functionality all delivered from a single cloud security service. Cisco Umbrella’s protection is extended to devices, remote users, and distributed locations anywhere. As company employees work from many locations and devices, Cisco Umbrella is the easiest way to effectively protect users everywhere in minutes.

    Cisco Umbrella uses machine learning to search for, identify, and even predict malicious domains. By learning from internet activity patterns, this DNS-layer security solution can automatically identify attacker infrastructure being staged for the next threat. These domains are then proactively blocked, protecting networks from potential compromise. Cisco Umbrella analyzes terabytes of data in real time across all markets, geographies, and protocols.

    Cisco Umbrella works with leading IT companies to integrate its security enforcement and intelligence. Built with a bidirectional API, Cisco Umbrella makes it easy to extend protection from on-premises security appliances to cloud controlled devices and sites.

    Cisco Umbrella is suitable for small businesses without dedicated security professionals, as well as for multinational enterprises with complex environments.

    Why use Cisco Umbrella?

    • Simplify security management: Cisco Umbrella is the fastest and easiest way to protect all users within minutes and reduces the number of infections and alerts sent from other security products by stopping threats at the earliest point. With no hardware to install and no software to manually update, ongoing management is simple

    • Reliable reporting: Cisco Umbrella reports show activity for each device or network in the system. Users gain a more complete picture of the security risks facing their organization and can take action to remedy them.

    • Manage and control cloud apps: Umbrella provides visibility into sanctioned and unsanctioned cloud services in use across the enterprise. Users can uncover new services being used, see who is using them, identify potential risk, and block specific applications easily.

    Reviews from Real Users

    Cisco Umbrella stands out among its competitors for a number of reasons. Some of the major ones are its DNS-based protection, ability to protect users no matter where they are located, stability, and high performance.

    Daniel B., a network specialist at Syswind Kft, writes, “We primarily use the solution as cloud security for our branches. It protects us from direct internet outbreaks. It makes for good flexibility. The solution is very easy to manage. We found the initial setup, for example, to be quite simple. Efficient protection on the DNS level and even higher. The sandboxing feature analyses and handles the complicated security risks.”

    Victor M., SOC & Security Services Director at BEST, notes, “It provides security for the remote workers and it helps to improve enterprise security in a very easy way. We mainly enjoy web software protection capabilities. It prevents the end-users from getting into bad sites or sites that potentially could have malware or could be phishing. It helps end-users avoid the wrong sites. The solution works very smoothly. The user interface is good.”

    Microsoft Defender for Cloud Apps is a cloud access security broker (CASB) that provides multifunction visibility, control over data travel, and sophisticated analytics. With Microsoft Cloud App Security, you can: 

    - Manage, control, and audit apps to streamline cloud access security

    - Mange your access to resources to discover shadow IT and understand your digital information estate

    - Use real-time controls to enable threat protection on all the access points that touch your environment

    To learn more about our solution, ask questions, and share feedback, join our Microsoft Security, Compliance and Identity Community.

    Offer
    Learn more about Lookout
    Learn more about Cisco Umbrella
    Learn more about Microsoft Defender for Cloud Apps
    Sample Customers
    Chart Industries, City of Aspen, Eastern Mountain Sports, FLEXcon, George Washington University, Jackson Municipal Airport Authority, Ohio Public Library Information Network, PTC, Richland Community College, Smart Motors, Tulane University, VeriClaim
    Customers for Microsoft Defender for Cloud Apps include Accenture, St. Luke’s University Health Network, Ansell, and Nakilat.
    Top Industries
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company22%
    Manufacturing Company9%
    Comms Service Provider7%
    Government7%
    REVIEWERS
    Financial Services Firm16%
    Educational Organization9%
    Comms Service Provider9%
    Consumer Goods Company7%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company21%
    Comms Service Provider14%
    Financial Services Firm8%
    Government6%
    REVIEWERS
    Educational Organization38%
    Government13%
    Financial Services Firm13%
    Engineering Company13%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company20%
    Comms Service Provider11%
    Financial Services Firm11%
    Government7%
    Company Size
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business24%
    Midsize Enterprise15%
    Large Enterprise60%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business39%
    Midsize Enterprise25%
    Large Enterprise36%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business21%
    Midsize Enterprise15%
    Large Enterprise64%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business23%
    Midsize Enterprise32%
    Large Enterprise45%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business20%
    Midsize Enterprise14%
    Large Enterprise66%
    Buyer's Guide
    Cisco Umbrella vs. Microsoft Defender for Cloud Apps
    November 2022
    Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco Umbrella vs. Microsoft Defender for Cloud Apps and other solutions. Updated: November 2022.
    656,474 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    Cisco Umbrella is ranked 1st in Cloud Access Security Brokers (CASB) with 38 reviews while Microsoft Defender for Cloud Apps is ranked 2nd in Cloud Access Security Brokers (CASB) with 18 reviews. Cisco Umbrella is rated 8.6, while Microsoft Defender for Cloud Apps is rated 8.4. The top reviewer of Cisco Umbrella writes "We can see all of our locations in one place and only have to make changes once for all our locations". On the other hand, the top reviewer of Microsoft Defender for Cloud Apps writes "Integrates well and helps us in protecting sensitive information, but takes time to scan and apply the policies and cannot detect everything we need". Cisco Umbrella is most compared with Zscaler Internet Access, Palo Alto Networks DNS Security, Fortinet FortiGate SWG, Infoblox Advanced DNS Protection and Prisma Access by Palo Alto Networks, whereas Microsoft Defender for Cloud Apps is most compared with Zscaler Internet Access, Netskope CASB, Qualys VM, Prisma SaaS by Palo Alto Networks and Skyhigh Security. See our Cisco Umbrella vs. Microsoft Defender for Cloud Apps report.

    See our list of best Cloud Access Security Brokers (CASB) vendors.

    We monitor all Cloud Access Security Brokers (CASB) reviews to prevent fraudulent reviews and keep review quality high. We do not post reviews by company employees or direct competitors. We validate each review for authenticity via cross-reference with LinkedIn, and personal follow-up with the reviewer when necessary.