1. Overview

Windows compliance checks were developed by Prisma Cloud Labs. They can be enabled in your host compliance policy.

Create Windows host compliance rules in Defend > Compliance > Hosts. In the new rule dialog, select Windows host from the Types drop-down list.

windows compliance checks

The following checks are supported:

200001: Verify Windows Defender antivirus is running

Microsoft’s built in Windows Defender antivirus service is running.

200002: Verify Windows Defender antivirus is enabled

Microsoft’s built in Windows Defender service antivirus, anti-malware, and anti-spyware features are enabled

200003: Verify Windows Defender always-on protection is enabled

Always-on protection consists of real-time protection, behavior monitoring, and heuristics to identify malware based on known suspicious and malicious activities.

200004: Verify antivirus signatures match defined frequency

Windows antivirus signatures are overdue based on your frequency policy.

200005: Verify antivirus signatures are up-to-date

Windows antivirus signatures list must be updated within the last 14 days. If 14 days elapse without an update, signatures are stale. This interval is required to be effective against current threats.

200006: Verify anti-spyware signatures match defined frequency

Windows anti-spyware signatures are overdue based on your frequency policy.

200007: Verify anti-spyware signatures are up-to-date

Windows anti-spyware signatures list must be updated within the last 14 days. If 14 days elapse without an update, signatures are stale. This interval is required to be effective against current threats.

200201: Verify Windows Defender Control Flow Guard (CFG) is enabled

Control Flow Guard (CFG) is a platform security feature that combats memory corruption vulnerabilities. By placing tight restrictions on where an application can execute code, CFS makes it harder for exploits to execute arbitrary code through vulnerabilities, such as buffer overflows. This check is applicable to Windows Server 2019 only.

200202: Verify Windows Defender Data Execution Prevention (DEP) is enabled

Data Execution Prevention (DEP) monitors memory to stop malicious code from running. It monitors all processes and services and stops a program if it isn’t running correctly in memory. This check is applicable to Windows Server 2019 only.

200203: Verify Windows Defender Address Space Layout Randomization (ASLR) is enabled

Address space layout randomization (ASLR) prevents exploitation of memory corruption vulnerabilities. It prevents an attacker from reliably jumping to an exploited function in memory by randomly arranging the position (address) of the stack, heap, and loaded libararies. This check is applicable to Windows Server 2019 only.

200300: Verify Windows Firewall public profile is enabled

This setting is applied when a connection to a domain is made through a public network, such as at an airport, hotel, or coffee shop. Since the security of these networks is unknown and not really controlled by the user running the computer, it is suggested that the Public network profile of settings be more restrictive than either the Domain network or Private network.

200400: Verify Windows Update is enabled

Windows Update is a service which automates downloading and installing Microsoft Windows software updates.

200401: Verify Windows Update is set to automatically install

Verify that Windows is configured to automatically download and install updates at a regular interval.

  • If Windows Defender antivirus is not installed or running, all Windows Defender related checks (200001, 200002, 200003, 200201, 200202, 200203) fail with the following cause: "Windows Defender antivirus service is not installed/running".

  • Although checks 200004/5 and 200006/7 look similar, they clarify the root cause of the issue when assessed separately. Checks 200004/6 verify the update frequency policy, while 200005/7 verify that signatures are actually up-to-date. Checks 200004/6 show whether the defined frequency is suboptimal (greater than 14 days), while checks 200005/7 show if there was a failure to update the signatures according to the defined policy (whether it’s 14 days or some other interval).

  • If no definition files (signatures) are available, checks 200004 and 200006 fail with the following cause: "Windows Defender definition files are not available". Definitions can be removed with the following command:

    "%ProgramFiles%\Windows Defender\MpCmdRun.exe" -removedefinitions