And it’s a brand on a mission, too – to take the burdensome management out of security. As the Apex One developers put it in their blog, this is about “detecting and blocking as many endpoint threats as possible, without manual intervention.”
This, in turn, translates into less pressure on security teams, lighter workload for security service providers, and less costly time and effort involved overall.
But is this a solution the channel will want to sell? Is it easy and profitable to deploy and manage? And what makes it different from (and better than) what went before?
You can read the full solution brief on our website, but meanwhile here’s our take on it.
Single agent: a game-changer?
Trend’s existing XGen technology already automates threat detection across security layers and endpoints, including PC, Mac and VDI.
But where even the most automated threat detection capability stumbles is the need to use multiple agents to deliver across different kinds of customer deployment – like cloud, on-premise, and hybrid.
Here, Apex One plays a blinder. It has a single agent that is consistent across all customer deployment types, significantly diminishing deployment and ongoing management overheads, and reducing the risk of automation being devalued by interruption.
Given the high proportion of enterprise clients who have complex hybrid environments, this has to be a winner!
Detection and remediation: all done for you!
But security channel partners and in-house security teams alike also need to be sure that what is being automated is the most effective way for dealing with the broadest possible range of threats. Inadequate protection delivered automatically is not a value-add!
Apex One appears to be well ahead of the curve here, however, because it focuses its automation not on preventing threats (an impossible aim), but instead on detecting and removing them.
Unknown or fileless threat? Machine learning and behavioural analysis will spot its threatening characteristics and take action.
Operating system vulnerability? Apex One creates its own virtual patches to prevent zero-day exploits from making it onto any endpoint.
And if you’re hearing echoes of EDR (Endpoint Detection and Response) at this point, it’s true that Apex One offers upsell potential into both Trend’s full EDR and MDR (Managed Detection and Response) solutions - but it’s also important to understand that what Trend have built here is in fact something quite distinct.
Whereas EDR tends fundamentally be a noisy and manual process to manage (as we explained in this earlier post) automated detection and response - which is what Trend call it - neatly does much of it for you.
Manage, visualise, investigate – all in one place
The more you can understand about a threat, the more effective the measures you can take against it.
But the challenge is in corralling all the threat information – including user-based visibility, policy management, and log aggregation - into one place, in a way that makes sense of it.
Apex One has created a centralised console that enables exactly this, so although for some more detailed analysis a connection to an optional EDR dashboard is necessary, visualisation, investigation and reporting are already built into its standard configuration, adding an inbuilt layer of insight that other solutions don’t have.
Conclusions: is Apex One the peak of security for channel partners?
Everyone likes a great name and a strong story, and Apex One has got both in spades – not least because it is in fact essentially the new brand name for the existing Trend endpoint security solution within its Smart Protection Suites solutions family.
But this is not some kind of rebadging exercise to revive a flagging solution – because Trend’s endpoint solution isn’t flagging. Just the opposite, in fact: it has received high praise from industry analysts like Gartner year after year, including in 2018.
But coupling it with a single agent shows that there’s a strategic endgame in mind: to make Trend’s endpoint security solutions as effortless as possible to use across every client environment – and therefore very hard to displace.
For end-clients and channel partners alike – and particularly existing Trend Micro Office Scan users, who will receive Apex One as a regular update at no additional cost - that’s a rebrand that will deliver far more than just a new name and a shiny logo.