Microsoft Announces Defender for Business Standalone Solution for Small Businesses


Microsoft has launched a new standalone version of its Defender for Business solution for commercial customers. The new cost-effective enterprise-grade endpoint security offering was first announced at Ignite 2021, and it’s designed for small to medium-sized businesses with up to 300 employees.

The Redmond giant started rolling out Microsoft Defender for Business to organizations with a Microsoft 365 Business Premium plan in March. The premium product costs $22 per user per month, and it includes Office apps, Microsoft Intune, Azure Virtual Desktop, Azure Active Directory Premium P1, as well as Azure Information Protection.

This new Microsoft Defender for Business standalone edition explicitly targets those small businesses (with limited resources) who don’t want to purchase the premium suite. It’s available to purchase via Microsoft Partner Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) partners at $3 per user per month, billed annually. The new security offering is available across Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android.

“Microsoft believes in security for all. We are proud to further deliver on that vision today. With the GA of Defender for Business, SMBs will get greater protection with simplified security to help them better protect, detect and respond to threats,” explained Vasu Jakkal, CVP, security, compliance & identity at Microsoft.

Specifically, Microsoft Defender for Business comes with a bunch of key security capabilities such as attack surface reduction, threat and vulnerability management, endpoint detection and response, automatic investigation, and remediation. The company also claims that it offers “Next-gen” protection against viruses, malware, and ransomware attacks.

Microsoft Announces Defender for Business Standalone Solution for Small Businesses

Microsoft Defender for Business to get server OS support in late 2022

Moving forward, Microsoft is also planning to add Windows and Linux server support to the standalone edition as an add-on later this year. “Windows Server experience will be the same as Windows client. Linux servers will use deployment scripts allowing you to integrate into your existing management platforms such as Chef, Puppet, and Ansible,” the company explained.

Microsoft has noted that the new Defender for Business standalone solution should help its partners push more customers to the Microsoft 365 Business Premium suite. Additionally, it offers integration with Microsoft 365 Lighthouse, which allows partners to track security incidents across tenants in a unified administrator solution.

Microsoft Defender for Business is also getting some new integrations with third-party Remote Monitoring and Management (RMM) tools, including Datto RMM. Meanwhile, ConnectWise RMM integration with Microsoft 365 Business Premium and Microsoft Intune is expected to arrive in the coming months.

Microsoft is offering a free 30-day trial of its Defender for Business service, and we invite you to check out the product page for details. If you are interested to learn more about Defender for Business, the company will hold a free webinar for its partners on May 5, 2022.