M365 Defender for Endpoints | Licensing

Copper Contributor


At the moment our company is in a multi-vendor security security profile using O365 E3 + EMS E3 from the Microsoft portfolio. Discussions are on-going with multiple vendors for an EDR solution and M365 Defender for Endpoints is being considered as an option. 
However, looking into the licensing it seems like we might have to move our 500+ users from the current licensing plan to M365 E3 + M365 E5 Security Add-on?
Initially it was said by a partner that an EMS E5 plan would suffice but I don't think that's the case. 
Any advice is much appreciated.


3 Replies

@Hrishikesh Sekhar Have a look at Minimum requirements for Microsoft Defender for Endpoint | Microsoft Docs There is a standalone product called Microsoft Defender for Endpoint

@Ambarish RH 

So, continuing Microsoft's wonderful process of muddying the waters of understanding their levels, suites, and licensing options and overly complicating things,  I'm trying to understand why our organization has access to Microsoft 365 Defender site (which would appear to include Microsoft Defender for Endpoint because all of our machines are there and being managed)  when we don't own a Microsoft 365 license of any kind.  
The page you listed shows that (among other options) Microsoft 365 being one of the the available licenses that include for Defender for Endpoint (or stand alone licensing for DFE being another option).   

We have EMS E5 licenses assigned to our users, and this appears to be giving use Defender for Endpoint licensing as well, even though on several sites (including the O365 portal itself) indicating that EMS does not give you Defender for Endpoint licensing. 

However this site indicates it does (or least lists it as a pre-request for DFE).  


I"m assuming we aren't accidentally getting DFE, and it must be EMS E5 that's giving us the access.  

Nonetheless, Microsoft's convoluted licensing practices continue to confuse something that should be much easier to understand.   


@TedLarsen Agree that MS licensing is very confusing even for the most experienced ones. Recently found a site that made a great effort to simply the licensing https://m365maps.com/