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Why You Can’t Afford to Ignore MDR in Your Cybersecurity Strategy

Learn why an Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR) solution may not be sufficient for your endpoint security 

March 07 2023Dheeraj Rawal

Under attack

As means of cyberattacks grow in sophistication, the ways systems are protected must also advance. Rarely a day passes without news of a large company falling victim to an attack. This doesn’t mean only bigger businesses are targeted; small and medium companies are under attack, too - just that they are less newsworthy.  Regardless of size, every organization has data and intellectual property to protect and must invest in defending its corporate network.

Their target is the endpoint and not the network

Man is holding a tablet.

Attackers’ final targets are often endpoints rather than the corporate network. Endpoints can serve as entry points to a company’s crown jewels: systems, servers, databases, and more. If unsecured, they pose a considerable risk to an organization. But reducing them is too idealistic. In fact, as organizations become more digital, endpoints grow by the day. 

A bigger playground for cybercriminals

The pandemic accelerated the trend to remote work, with many working patterns set to be permanent. Employees are increasingly likely to access corporate systems via multiple devices, such as laptops, tablets, and mobiles. And with BYOD (bring your own device) policies on the rise, more personal devices are used to access business apps and sensitive data.

This ease of accessing business systems aids productivity but, conversely, increases the attack surface. More endpoints connected to business systems mean more opportunities for cybercriminals to attack, making effective endpoint security crucial. However, as threats evolve, traditional endpoint protection is insufficient. Antivirus software protects against known threats but can be ineffective in the face of advanced or unknown threats. Many zero-day threats are invisible to classic antivirus software.

EDR: a go-to cybersecurity solution, but is it that enough?

An endpoint detection and response (EDR) solution is more sophisticated than antivirus software. It includes antivirus capabilities plus powerful functionality like advanced persistent threat (APT) detection, advanced analytics, response mechanisms, device management, and more. For instance, if an endpoint is infected, an EDR solution will trigger an alert, isolate the endpoint, and provide forensic information to security teams for incident analysis.

The added need for security teams 

Organizations without in-house security teams or access to security experts have problems ensuring the effectiveness of their EDR solution because it demands a lot of manual intervention, analysis, and investigation.  

Furthermore, the visibility of activities on the endpoints is limited, and monitoring is not continuous. Attacks may be detected late, allowing attackers to roam at will and cause significant damage until organizations react.

With limited funding to recruit skilled – and expensive – security professionals to manage threats, the risks are palpable.  And as the frequency and complexity of cyber risks grow, it becomes even more challenging for businesses to secure their systems and stay one step ahead.

MDR services fit the bill  

But the harsh reality is – even if companies have the budget – there is a dire talent shortage. Moreover, organizations have their core purpose and business operations to focus on, which is why they turn to Managed Detection and Response (MDR).

With the economies of scale offered by security service providers, the case for MDR is compelling. They have the tools and personnel to manage endpoint protection, detection, and response.    

High-performance EDR security

An MDR services provider will help you identify an EDR solution that complements your security architecture and has the EDR tools to match your requirements. Configuring and implementing EDR solutions to fit business needs can be complex. They require appropriate expertise to optimize them for efficiency.

An EDR solution will typically trigger floods of alerts, some of which will be false alarms. At this point, it needs human involvement. Security experts must verify which alerts are genuine threats to the company and triage them accordingly. They will correlate them and consider other parameters to determine if an attempt to launch an attack is underway. Companies with small security teams will find this task overwhelming as a tsunami of alerts is too high to analyze individually.

The advantages of MDR services over EDR alone

A Managed Detection and Response service provides companies with customized recommendations based on cybersecurity incidents. The recommendations are based on in-depth analysis and contextual information, making them very effective in preventing similar attacks.

MDR providers offer 24/7 monitoring, which is financially prohibitive and unfeasible for many in-house teams. Usually, such levels of in-depth monitoring and analysis are provided with the help of Security Operations Center (SOC) teams.  A SOC team comprises skilled professionals who monitor, detect, prevent, and respond to threats around the clock.  

Over and above EDR, MDR services can offer you:

  • Thorough incident investigation
  • Acting upon critical alerts as needed
  • Responding to security incidents
  • Proactive threat detection
  • Real-time incident reporting
  • And more

An MDR provider is ideal if:

  • You have limited resources internally
  • The level of security expertise in your company is limited
  • Your current EDR solutions cannot detect advanced threats
  • Your existing security levels still have to develop and mature
  • Above all, you want to focus on your core business and strategic initiatives

When assessing an MDR provider’s key features, check if they also offer SOC services, which is a critical element. T-Systems offers full-scale SOC for expert-level monitoring, analysis, and real-time reporting. For endpoint security, we deploy machine learning algorithms to detect threats at an early stage. Our cybersecurity analysts also hunt for low-profile threats periodically, which usually go undetected.

Our MDR and SOC services

For more information on T-Systems MDR, download our flyer.

You can also discover more about our SOC services here.

Are you unsure of your current cybersecurity levels? Are you weighing up EDR solutions or MDR services? We can help you assess your cybersecurity levels and determine the best-fit solution for you. Get in touch with us today.

About the author
Dheeraj Rawal

Dheeraj Rawal

Content Marketer, T-Systems International GmbH

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