Announcing: Windows Defender ATP support for Windows 7 and Windows 8.1

With Windows 10 we built the most secure Windows ever, by hardening the platform itself and by developing Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) – a unified endpoint security platform that helps stop breaches. This means that for the first time we’ve built threat and exploit protection, and Endpoint Detection & Response right into the operating system, powered by the cloud. We hear from our customers security is one of the biggest motivators for their move to Windows 10. Meanwhile, we know that while in their transition, some may have a mix of Windows 10 and Windows 7 devices in their environments. We want to help our customers achieve the best security possible on their way to Windows 10 ahead of the end of support for Windows 7 in January 2020.

That’s why today, we are pleased to announce that we are adding Windows Defender ATP down-level support for Windows 7 SP1 and Windows 8.1.

Starting this summer, customers moving to Windows 10 can add Windows Defender ATP Endpoint Detection & Response (EDR) functionality to their Windows 7, and Windows 8.1 devices, and get a holistic view across their endpoints.

“Security is the main driver to get current and stay current with Windows 10. It’s great to see Microsoft helping customers better protect our environment with WDATP support for Windows 7 during this transition.”

— Matt Cochran, Manager Information Systems, Hendrick Motorsports

For Windows 7 and Windows 8.1, we are building a behavioral based EDR solution to give security teams rich insights into threats on their endpoints. All detections and events are surfaced in Windows Defender Security Center, the cloud-based console for Windows Defender ATP. Security teams benefit from correlated alerts for known and unknown adversaries, additional threat intelligence, and a detailed machine timeline for further investigations and manual response options.

Although this solution can run side-by-side with third-party antivirus solutions, it is better together with Windows Defender Antivirus (also known as System Center Endpoint Protection (SCEP) for down-level). With Windows Defender Antivirus, security teams can see all malware detections and trigger response actions to prevent the spread of malware, in the same console.

Windows Defender ATP provides deep insights into Windows 7 events on a rich machine timeline

Windows Defender ATP provides deep insights into Windows 7 events on a rich machine timeline

Customers will get access to a public preview of the down-level EDR solution this spring, allowing security teams to also detect suspicious behavior on their Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 devices – using a single solution.

More Partners Join Windows Defender ATP

Our customer’s security is a top priority, and we know that a mix of platforms doesn’t always mean Windows platforms. We’ve also been working closely with our partners to enable Windows Defender ATP to detect, protect and respond to security threats on macOS, Linux, iOS, and Android devices.  In November we announced this cross-platform support via industry leading partners: Bitdefender, Lookout and Ziften. Today we are pleased to welcome our fourth cross-platform partner, SentinelOne. SentinelOne’s Endpoint Protection Platform is an integrated EPP+EDR solution that utilizes static and behavioral AI engines to provide multilayered prevention, detection, and response as well as encrypted traffic inspection using one autonomous agent.

With Windows Defender ATP for Windows 10, Windows Server 2012R2 and 2016, now for Windows 7 and Windows 8.1 and our partner integration for non-Windows devices, we give security teams a single solution to detect and respond to advanced attacks across the majority of their endpoints. We’re not stopping here, we’ll continue to deliver new capabilities to break down the economy of the attacks.

Learn more about Windows Defender ATP here.