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Microsoft Defender for Endpoint vs Symantec Endpoint Security comparison

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Comparison Buyer's Guide
Executive Summary
Updated on March 20, 2022

We performed a comparison between Microsoft Defender For Endpoint and Symantec End User Endpoint Security based on our users’ reviews in four categories. After reading all of the collected data, you can find our conclusion below.

  • Ease of Deployment: Users of Microsoft Defender For Endpoint provide mixed reviews regarding its deployment. There are some reviewers who say that the setup is easy and straightforward, while other users mention that the initial setup can be complex (especially in regards to the configuration of extra parts), and the deployment can take up to a few months depending on the size of the organization. In contrast, users of Symantec End User Endpoint Security found deployment to be simple and not complex at all.
  • Features: Valuable features of Microsoft Defender For Endpoint include holistic integration with all Defender products and MCAS, data leak prevention, high stability, attack surface reduction controls, exploit prevention control, application control, scalability, ransomware, and auto-remediation as well as manual-remediation. There are certain things that users find are lacking. Some users mention that other vendors provide a lot more customization when it comes to integration; Others say they encountered some misbehavior between Microsoft Office Suite and Defender; Still other users feel the GUI could be better optimized, the monitoring could be better, onboarding could be a little faster, log collection could be easier, and that the dashboard could be more streamlined. Some reviewers have also experienced some issues with scalability.

    Valuable features of Symantec End User Endpoint Security include great malware detection, a good firewall, IPS and impeccable device control, antivirus database, stability, scalability, user-friendliness, single-pane management, anomaly alerts, and automated updates. Reviewers also mention that the solution needs to do a better job at scanning video links, needs to improve its functionality, and needs more network and cloud scanning coverage. Other users say there have been instances where the root causes of alerts could not be found, and others feel that the agent shouldn't use up so many resources at the endpoint when scanning and protecting. Other useful feedback includes that the enterprise edition does not report attacks on external devices, the whitelisting feature does not work as expected, and that there is a lack of reporting and alerts.
  • Pricing: Microsoft Defender For Endpoint users say the pricing is good. Users of Symantec End User Endpoint Security say the pricing seems to be good and quite competitive.
  • Service and Support: Users of Microsoft Defender For Endpoint have the opinion that service and support are just average. While there are a select few users of Symantec End User Endpoint Security that say service and support are okay, the majority feel that they are not responsive enough.

Comparison Results: Based on the parameters we compared, users of Microsoft Defender For Endpoint were happier with the solution and gave it slightly higher ratings than users of Symantec End User Endpoint Security. It seems that users of Symantec End User Endpoint Security see a lot of room for improvement with the solution, and are disappointed with the lack of features as well.

To learn more, read our detailed Microsoft Defender for Endpoint vs. Symantec Endpoint Security report (Updated: September 2022).
635,987 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:
Pros
"The most valuable feature is signature-based malware detection.""It is extensive in terms of providing visibility and insights into threats. It allows for research into a threat, and you can chart your progress on how you're resolving it.""I'm only using the AMP (advanced malware protection) which is protecting my file system from all the malicious things that might happen. It should protect all kinds of things that might happen on the servers, things that I cannot see.""The most valuable feature is its threat protection and data privacy, including its cyber attack and data protection, as we need to cover and protect data on user devices.""The biggest lesson that I have learned from using this product is that there is a lot more malware slipping through my email filters than I expected.""The threat Grid with the ability to observe the sandboxing, analyze, and perform investigations of different malicious files has been great.""Device Trajectory is one of the most valuable features. We're able to dig in and really understand how things came to be and where to focus our efforts.""Definitely, the best feature for Cisco Secure Endpoint is the integration with Talos. On the backend, Talos checks all the signatures, all the malware, and for any attacks going on around the world... Because Secure Endpoint has a connection to it, we get protected by it right then and there."

More Cisco Secure Endpoint Pros →

"Microsoft Defender for Endpoint is a robust platform.""The main features of this solution are that it handles everything by itself and is well integrated.""The attack surface reduction rules are the most valuable. We're able to have unattended remediation actions when the solution works side by side with a local antivirus like Microsoft Defender or Kaspersky. The attack surface reduction rules help us to proactively block and stop threats.""We like that it has a free version available.""The most valuable feature is that it comes with the package, so there is no additional installation of third-party software. It's also easy to use.""Technical support has been great.""The solution has good performance, I have not seen a problem.""We are a Microsoft shop, and Defender is a Microsoft solution that provides some security at a reasonable cost."

More Microsoft Defender for Endpoint Pros →

"There are no issues with scalability.""It seems to be user-friendly. Our users seem to like it for the most part.""Symantec End-user Endpoint Security is a very powerful solution.""The initial setup is very simple and straightforward.""The firewall, IPS and device control are useful at protecting the environment.""The most useful features are the antivirus, anti-spyware, and the firewall feature. It also provides application control and Host Integrity, which is a very unique feature.""Great security and very user friendly.""It is very easy to managing everything in relation to the implementation and processing. The initial setup is very easy."

More Symantec Endpoint Security Pros →

Cons
"We don't have issues. We think that Cisco covers all of the security aspects on the market. They continue to innovate in the right way.""I would like to see integration with Cisco Analytics.""The Linux agent is a simple offline classic agent, and it doesn't support Secure Boot, which is important to have on a Linux machine. The Linux agent has conflicts with other solutions, including the Exploit Prevention system found in Windows servers. We didn't find a fix during troubleshooting, and Cisco couldn't offer one either. Eventually, we had to shut down the Exploit Prevention system. We didn't like that as we always want a solution that can fit smoothly into the setup without causing problems, especially where security is concerned. The tool also caused CPU spikes on our production machine, and we were seriously considering moving to another product.""In Orbital, there are tons of prebuilt queries, but there is not a lot of information in lay terms. There isn't enough information to help us with what we're looking for and why we are looking for it with this query. There are probably a dozen queries in there that really focus on what I need to focus on, but they are not always easy to find the first time through.""They could improve the main dashboard to more clearly show me the things that I want to see. When I open the dashboard right now, I see a million things and they are not always the things that I need.""The GUI needs improvement, it's not good.""It could be improved in connection with artificial intelligence and IoT.""This product has issues with the number of false positives that it reports."

More Cisco Secure Endpoint Cons →

"It's not quite a mature solution just yet. It needs more time to grow and develop.""I would like to see fewer pop messages and alerts.""It would be helpful if they offered video tutorial guides.""Our team's knowledge of the solution needs to be improved, and Microsoft could do a better job conveying the necessary information to users. We could proactively use the tool more and explore capabilities we are not yet utilizing.""Microsoft Defender for Endpoint could provide us with a more holistic approach, such as collaboration. They can provide us with an environment from where we can manage all the endpoints from one central location, such as overall management.""The time it takes to restore the application could be improved. It has a lot of dependencies. It's not like the Microsoft security that comes with the OS. Updating through the command prompt, most of the time, it takes some time to download some of these dependencies.""Microsoft Defender for Endpoint could improve by making the reporting better.""We'd like the stability to be better."

More Microsoft Defender for Endpoint Cons →

"Symantec isn't good in terms of updating customers about updates. You'd normally have to search it out. Sometimes, the update process for the administration and management console can be a bit intimidating, and it can be quite inconvenient to get the updates. That's because when you have to do the update, you have to update the management console, and then you need to update the clients. Their application that's installed on desktops and servers needs to go hand in hand with the management console. Sometimes, it's a bit unwieldy to see that process through.""Difficult to set up on older systems.""The technical support could improve because when you reach level one support there is a lot of delays.""Nowadays, threats are changing, and they are moving more towards script control and zero-day attacks. So, we would like to have more control similar to an EDR solution. Symantec Endpoint Protection has certainly come a long way as a traditional antivirus, but because the threats are changing, we would like to have more EDR features so that we have a detailed view of the source from where the infection entered the environment and whether it has tried to connect any other endpoint. It should provide such a detailed view for investigation. It should protect against zero-day threats, etc. These are the key enhancements that can make it a complete solution for any enterprise. Currently, we have seen organizations going for two solutions: antivirus and EDR. With both these capabilities, it would be a complete package.""The technical support could be a bit better.""We had an issue with the Broadcom migration. We had some problems with product support, and the deployment is tricky because it's an on-premises technology. Deploying any on-premises security solution is hard because you have to distribute the software.""The solution could improve by adding encryption. If it had encryption along with antivirus it would be better.""After selling this product, what we have observed is that the system gets slower, which is a major issue."

More Symantec Endpoint Security Cons →

Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "Licensing fees are on a yearly basis and I am happy with the pricing."
  • "We have a license for 3,000 users and if we get up to 3,100 users, it doesn't stop working, but on the next renewal date you're supposed to go in there and add that extra 100 licenses. It's really good that they let you grow and expand and then pay for it. Sometimes, with other products, you overuse a license and they just don't work."
  • "Cisco Secure Endpoint is not too expensive and it's not cheap. It's quite fair."
  • "The price is very fair to the customer."
  • "...the licensing needs to be improved. All the product features we need are there. It's just a matter of the complexity and the different offerings and trying to figure things out."
  • "The pricing and licensing fees are okay."
  • "Because we do see the value of what it's bringing, I think they have priced it well."
  • "The solution is highly affordable; I believe we pay $2 or $3 per endpoint. It's significantly cheaper than the competitors on the market."
  • More Cisco Secure Endpoint Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "Microsoft Defender ATP is expensive."
  • "I pay for it through the Windows Professional or Standard license. It is a one-time cost for me, and I use the same license."
  • "When compared with other vendors, the pricing is very high."
  • "This solution is part of Windows and comes included with it."
  • "We sell this product as part of Office 365 and it is not expensive."
  • "I got it with the Microsoft Windows license."
  • "It is within the same range as other products. It is not too expensive, and it is also not cheap. Its price can be better, but, well, it is Microsoft."
  • "Currently, for us, Windows Defender is free with the purchase of Windows Server. Pricing is an important point for us when we are looking at the competitors of this solution. If we choose to go with another vendor, we will have to pay some license fees."
  • More Microsoft Defender for Endpoint Pricing and Cost Advice →

  • "Its price should be reasonable."
  • "There are subscription costs, we typically purchase the annual subscription. There can be other expenses too, for example, we use CrowdStrike also as part of our policy."
  • "The prices fluctuate, but this year I think it was maybe around $12,000."
  • "The EDR options are costlier than other products."
  • "Licensing is based on a yearly subscription."
  • "Symantec is expensive."
  • "Its price is reasonable."
  • "They're on the reasonable side. They are at mid-level. They're not too expensive as compared to their competitors. They're also not too cheap. In terms of price structure, hopefully, they could do a subscription."
  • More Symantec Endpoint Security Pricing and Cost Advice →

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    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer:The most valuable feature is signature-based malware detection.
    Top Answer:Licensing fees are on a yearly basis and I am happy with the pricing.
    Top Answer:The GUI needs improvement, it's not good. There are false positives in emails. At times, the emails are blocked and… more »
    Top Answer:Microsoft Defender for Endpoint is a cloud-delivered endpoint security solution. The tool reduces the attack surface… more »
    Top Answer:We use Symantec because we do not use MS Enterprise products, but in my opinion, Microsoft Defender is a superior… more »
    Top Answer:The CrowdStrike solution delivers a lot of information about incidents. It has a very light sensor that will never push… more »
    Top Answer:Aqua Security is easy to use and very manageable. Its main focus is on Kubernetes and Docker. Security is a very… more »
    Top Answer:Protection from viruses, malware, Trojans, and malicious files is most valuable. It is also good in terms of application… more »
    Comparisons
    Also Known As
    Cisco AMP for Endpoints
    Microsoft Defender ATP, Microsoft Defender Advanced Threat Protection, MS Defender for Endpoint, Microsoft Defender Antivirus
    Symantec EPP, Symantec Endpoint Protection (SEP)
    Learn More
    Overview

    Cisco Secure Endpoint is a cloud-managed endpoint security solution that provides advanced protection against viruses, malware, and other cyber threats by detecting, preventing, and responding to threats. Cisco Secure Endpoint is managed online via a web-based management console and can be deployed on a variety of platforms. It protects endpoints, networks, emails, and web traffic.

    In a world of evolving threats, it’s necessary to put security above everything. Cisco Secure Endpoint provides you with the scope, scale, and capabilities to attain effective security with its integrated portfolio and industry-leading threat intelligence. Cisco Secure Endpoint continuously tracks and analyzes files and file activities across your systems - both remote and on premises - and compares these events to other events that occurred before or during past attacks. If a file exhibits malicious behavior, the tool sends an alert which enables you to stop a potential threat from succeeding.

    Key Capabilities of Cisco Secure Endpoint

    • Multi-layered protection: Cisco Secure Endpoint combines behavioral analytics, machine learning, and signature-based techniques to prevent threats from compromising your endpoints.

    • Powerful EDR capabilities: Reduce attack surface using advanced endpoint and extended detection and response, threat hunting, and endpoint isolation.

    • Dynamic malware analysis: Identify and block attacks in real time.

    • Simplified investigations: Advanced search capabilities help you get the information you need about your endpoints fast.

    Reviews from Real Users

    Cisco Secure Endpoint stands out among its competitors for a number of reasons. Two major ones are its ability to enable developers to easily secure their endpoints with one single operation using its management console and its advanced alerting techniques.

    Tim C., an IT manager at Van Der Meer Consulting, writes, "The solution makes it possible to see a threat once and block it everywhere across all endpoints and the entire security platform. It has the ability to block right down to the file and application level across all devices based on policies, such as, blacklisting and whitelisting of software and applications. This is good. Its strength is the ability to identify threats very quickly, then lock them and the network down and block the threats across the organization and all devices, which is what you want. You don't want to be spending time working out how to block something. You want to block something very quickly, letting that flow through to all the devices and avoiding the same scenario on different operating systems."

    Wouter H., a technical team lead network & security at Missing Piece BV, notes, "Any alert that we get is an actionable alert. Immediately, there is information that we can just click through, see the point in time, what happened, what caused it, and what automatic actions were taken. We can then choose to take any manual actions, if we want, or start our investigation. We're no longer looking at digging into information or wading through hundreds of incidents. There's a list which says where the status is assigned, e.g., under investigation or investigation finished. That is all in the console. It has taken away a lot of the administration, which we would normally be doing, and integrated it into the console for us."

    Microsoft Defender for Endpoint is a complete endpoint security solution that delivers preventative protection, post-breach detection, automated investigation, and response. With Defender for Endpoint, you have: 

    Agentless, cloud powered - No additional deployment or infrastructure. No delays or update compatibility issues. Always up to date. 

    Unparalleled optics - Built on the industry’s deepest insight into Windows threats and shared signals across devices, identities, and information. 

    Automated security - Take your security to a new level by going from alert to remediation in minutes—at scale. 

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

    Unmatched Endpoint Safety for Your OrganizationAs an on-premises, hybrid, or cloud-based solution, the single-agent Symantec platform protects all your traditional and mobile endpoint devices, and uses artificial intelligence (AI) to optimize security decisions.

    Offer
    Learn more about Cisco Secure Endpoint
    Learn more about Microsoft Defender for Endpoint
    Learn more about Symantec Endpoint Security
    Sample Customers
    Heritage Bank, Mobile County Schools, NHL University, Thunder Bay Regional, Yokogawa Electric, Sam Houston State University, First Financial Bank
    Petrofrac, Metro CSG, Christus Health
    Audio Visual Dynamics, Red Deer Advocate, Asia Pacific Telecom Co. Ltd., Kibbutz Ein Gedi, and AMETEK, Inc.
    Top Industries
    REVIEWERS
    Comms Service Provider16%
    Manufacturing Company11%
    Healthcare Company11%
    Government11%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company20%
    Comms Service Provider16%
    Government8%
    Financial Services Firm6%
    REVIEWERS
    Financial Services Firm20%
    Computer Software Company16%
    Comms Service Provider7%
    Manufacturing Company7%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company19%
    Comms Service Provider12%
    Government9%
    Financial Services Firm8%
    REVIEWERS
    Financial Services Firm16%
    Computer Software Company9%
    Healthcare Company6%
    Pharma/Biotech Company6%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Computer Software Company18%
    Comms Service Provider18%
    Government8%
    Financial Services Firm7%
    Company Size
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business34%
    Midsize Enterprise23%
    Large Enterprise43%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business26%
    Midsize Enterprise18%
    Large Enterprise56%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business42%
    Midsize Enterprise18%
    Large Enterprise40%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business25%
    Midsize Enterprise17%
    Large Enterprise58%
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business40%
    Midsize Enterprise21%
    Large Enterprise40%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business22%
    Midsize Enterprise17%
    Large Enterprise61%
    Buyer's Guide
    Microsoft Defender for Endpoint vs. Symantec Endpoint Security
    September 2022
    Find out what your peers are saying about Microsoft Defender for Endpoint vs. Symantec Endpoint Security and other solutions. Updated: September 2022.
    635,987 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    Microsoft Defender for Endpoint is ranked 2nd in EPP (Endpoint Protection for Business) with 121 reviews while Symantec Endpoint Security is ranked 10th in EPP (Endpoint Protection for Business) with 65 reviews. Microsoft Defender for Endpoint is rated 8.0, while Symantec Endpoint Security is rated 7.4. The top reviewer of Microsoft Defender for Endpoint writes "Enables ingestion of events directly into your SIEM/SOAR, but requires integration with all Defender products to work optimally". On the other hand, the top reviewer of Symantec Endpoint Security writes "The solution has given us visibility into compliance within our whole system and helped us ensure everything is updated". Microsoft Defender for Endpoint is most compared with Sophos Intercept X, CrowdStrike Falcon, Cortex XDR by Palo Alto Networks, SentinelOne and Malwarebytes, whereas Symantec Endpoint Security is most compared with Cortex XDR by Palo Alto Networks, CrowdStrike Falcon, Trend Micro Deep Security and Kaspersky Endpoint Security for Business. See our Microsoft Defender for Endpoint vs. Symantec Endpoint Security report.

    See our list of best EPP (Endpoint Protection for Business) vendors.

    We monitor all EPP (Endpoint Protection for Business) 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.