9 Benefits of Managed Detection and Response (MDR)
The number of open cyber security jobs grew from one million positions in 2013 to 3.5 million in 2021. Protecting your organization is becoming more complex: as technology advances, so do the threats.
Choosing how to protect your organization is a difficult decision to make. Running an in-house, effective security operations center (SOC) is incredibly complicated and involves time, money, and resources some organizations just cannot spare. This has many turning to Managed Detection Response (MDR) providers.
To understand the benefits of using MDR, it’s important to start at the very beginning with what providers should be protecting you from. Read on to see how MDR builds upon Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR) and Extended Detection and Response (XDR).
Left of Boom (LoB) and Right of Boom (RoB)
LoB refers to the beginning of the sequence of events that make up a data breach, the pre-infection stage. This is where providers will focus on a threat before it makes its way into your system.
RoB is where real damage occurs because the threat is no longer a threat, it is inside your networking environment. The damage comes in terms of lost data, the cost of the attack, and the potential damage to an organization’s reputation.
For a provider to only focus on LoB is to work to keep the attacker out, but even the best preventative measures can be breached. To only focus on LoB means there is no plan for organizations to respond to a successful attack.
In opposition, to focus only on RoB is like standing with plasters ready to cover the damage you know is coming with no way to protect yourself from it in the first place. You are leaving yourself vulnerable and aren’t looking into ways to minimize the likelihood of disaster.
The best provider will offer you protection both left and right of boom, and this is what MDR does.
EDR vs. XDR
EDR focuses on endpoint protection, prevention of breaches, detection, and mitigation; it targets advanced threats that have managed to get inside your networking environment and contains them. It analyzes the threat to inform your IT department which part of the network was attacked, what it was doing, and how to stop it.
However, endpoint protection is only one aspect that needs to be protected. Good, coordinated attacks are more than just about endpoints since modern networks have many other areas to consider, such as the cloud.
This brings us to the evolution of EDR, which is XDR. Threats are responded to automatically or manually and use an AI tool to analyze and detect unusual behavior.
XDR can find patterns in behavior that would otherwise go undetected. Something that would be impossible for a group of software engineers to do is something XDR can achieve in real-time. This means information is delivered to your organization quicker, which results in faster outcomes.
The role of managed detection is, simply, once your network is breached, it will detect, analyze, respond, and remediate.
MDR security services are handled by third-party cyber security services, and its quality relies on using XDR effectively. MDR saves you time and money. It is an outsourced service that offers organizations the expertise and knowledge of a team they do not need to find themselves or have on their payroll.
When MDR monitors your network using machine learning (ML) and artificial intelligence (AI), it decreases the dwell time (the amount of time an attacker roams free on your network).
The role that MDR services play is to shorten this dwell time. It will detect, respond to, and mitigate the risk. Without MDR, dwell time can vary from minutes to months. With one minute being too long when it comes to someone hiding out in your network, you need the experience an MDR provider will offer.
To better understand the features of MDR, we have compiled a list of nine benefits:
1. Data Protection
Your organization will store massive amounts of data each day. This makes it tricky to both manage and keep it secure. MDR engineering uses three main components to ensure your data is safe:
- Security analytics
- Proactive threat hunting
- Automated incident response
2. Expert Security Team
You have a specialized, expert security team on hand that understands the risks your organization specifically faces. In the event of a breach, they have the expertise to shut down the threats before they do any damage.
There is one point of contact, which saves time when a security breach inevitably occurs. Essentially, your MDR provider becomes an integral extension of your internal IT department.
3. 24/7 Monitoring and Proactive Approach
Cyber attacks can occur at any time, which is why MDR offers constant monitoring. This results in faster and more managed response times.
As MDR is proactive rather than only reactive, it is constantly threat hunting and searching for any sign of vulnerability that antivirus or firewall software may miss. This reduces the likelihood of a successful cyberattack because it searches for unknown threats before they have managed to do any damage.
4. Vulnerability Management
As MDR experts have an understanding of your network environment and the risks your organization faces, they can develop an accurate picture of your current vulnerabilities.
This is something that can be time-consuming to achieve yourself, so this takes some pressure off you. MDR providers can perform virtual patching and offer recommendations to mitigate risk.
5. Cloud Security
Cloud monitoring is essential for productivity, as cloud-based technology applications are mainstream now. An effective cloud monitoring system will monitor your internet-as-a-service (IaaS), software-as-a-service (SaaS), and security-as-a-service (SECaaS).
MDR procurement with integrated cloud-based monitoring ensure there are no blind spots in your protection.
6. Compliance Reporting
Good compliance goes hand in hand with good security practices. Keeping customer and staff information safe is crucial, and failure to do so can result in fines, lawsuits, and loss of reputation.
A reputable provider will review your processes and ensure you are following best practices in line with regulatory compliance without losing sight of any of the risks your organization faces.
7. Threat Analysis
Your MDR provider can differentiate between real and false alarms. Before any alerts are sent to your in-house security department, the threats are verified to ensure they are genuine and require immediate attention. This saves you time and also means there is a clear, up-to-date plan in place for these real threats.
Insider threats also offer a challenge that is difficult to predict. Your MDR provider monitors employee behavior and searches for unusual activity, keeping you safe in one of your most vulnerable places: from the inside.
8. It’s Customizable
MDR offers personalized security for your organization’s needs. This is not a one size fits all solution, so you need a provider that adapts to your needs for example with eu mdr regulations.
With the focus on the right areas, it means no effort is spent looking in the wrong places for risk. It also means you’re not paying for a service that you’re not using.
9. AI Protection
MDR uses AI to investigate, respond to, and contain threats. As this involves machine learning, it means MDR provides you with a deeper detection of a cyber security breach than you would receive from a traditional Managed Service Security Provider (MSSP), which has more limited monitoring capabilities.
What About SOC-as-a-Service?
It can feel like the cyber security world is a never-ending list of acronyms, but a lot of them connect to one another, which can make them less confusing.
A security operations center (SOC) is a required part of an MDR solution. The SOC is made up of a team of security experts who monitor threats and exposures. These are the people behind the big decisions, who make the recommendations to eliminate threats to your network and tighten your security.
Why Not MSSP?
We’ve mentioned it before, but you might be wondering why you should choose MDR over MSSP. While many perceive these two solutions to be similar they each have major differences that will sway your decision one way or the other.
First of all, MSSP solutions focus on prevention. The pre-infection stage where traditional antivirus tools live is only 50-60% accurate.
MSSPs often exclude the response element and rely on the customer for this part. Additionally, they don’t work 24/7, so these more limited monitoring capabilities can leave you more vulnerable.
Finally, MSSPs offer a more basic level of security, while MDR uses both AI and human intelligence to protect every corner of your network.
MSSP solutions are the cheaper of the two because you’re getting a more basic package. If you’re looking for advanced monitoring and threat resolution and to take the workload off yourself, then MDR is the better choice.
We Can Help
In most cases, you’re aware of the risks you face. However, this isn’t about the attack you expect. It’s about the threats that sneak and hide in your network that can cause catastrophic damage.
Essentially, EDR focuses on endpoint protection, XDR focuses on a point beyond just endpoint protection, and MDR uses these technologies to provide a service. Understanding what different providers and MDR options are on offer is the first step in finding the protection you need.
MDR service options are the perfect solution for you if you want to save costs and time, but finding the right provider to offer you this protection can be overwhelming. It’s easy to get lost in what everyone has to offer, which is where we can help you.
Contact us today or even visit one of our locations near you. There are hundreds of providers out there, let us help you find the perfect fit for you!