Create and manage device groups

Applies to:

In an enterprise scenario, security operation teams are typically assigned a set of devices. These devices are grouped together based on a set of attributes such as their domains, computer names, or designated tags.

In Microsoft Defender for Endpoint, you can create device groups and use them to:

  • Limit access to related alerts and data to specific Azure AD user groups with assigned RBAC roles
  • Configure different auto-remediation settings for different sets of devices
  • Assign specific remediation levels to apply during automated investigations
  • In an investigation, filter the Devices list to just specific device groups by using the Group filter.

You can create device groups in the context of role-based access (RBAC) to control who can take specific action or see information by assigning the device group(s) to a user group. For more information, see Manage portal access using role-based access control.

Tip

For a comprehensive look into RBAC application, read: Is your SOC running flat with RBAC.

As part of the process of creating a device group, you'll:

  • Set the automated remediation level for that group. For more information on remediation levels, see Use Automated investigation to investigate and remediate threats.
  • Specify the matching rule that determines which device group belongs to the group based on the device name, domain, tags, and OS platform. If a device is also matched to other groups, it is added only to the highest ranked device group.
  • Select the Azure AD user group that should have access to the device group.
  • Rank the device group relative to other groups after it is created.

Note

A device group is accessible to all users if you don’t assign any Azure AD groups to it.

Create a device group

  1. In the navigation pane, select Settings > Device groups.

  2. Click Add device group.

  3. Enter the group name and automation settings and specify the matching rule that determines which devices belong to the group. See How the automated investigation starts.

    Tip

    If you want to group devices by organizational unit, you can configure the registry key for the group affiliation. For more information on device tagging, see Create and manage device tags.

  4. Preview several devices that will be matched by this rule. If you are satisfied with the rule, click the User access tab.

  5. Assign the user groups that can access the device group you created.

    Note

    You can only grant access to Azure AD user groups that have been assigned to RBAC roles.

  6. Click Close. The configuration changes are applied.

Manage device groups

You can promote or demote the rank of a device group so that it is given higher or lower priority during matching. When a device is matched to more than one group, it is added only to the highest ranked group. You can also edit and delete groups.

Warning

Deleting a device group may affect email notification rules. If a device group is configured under an email notification rule, it will be removed from that rule. If the device group is the only group configured for an email notification, that email notification rule will be deleted along with the device group.

By default, device groups are accessible to all users with portal access. You can change the default behavior by assigning Azure AD user groups to the device group.

Devices that are not matched to any groups are added to Ungrouped devices (default) group. You cannot change the rank of this group or delete it. However, you can change the remediation level of this group, and define the Azure AD user groups that can access this group.

Note

Applying changes to device group configuration may take up to several minutes.