The expanded digital attack surface presented by modern organizations complicates efforts to defend enterprise infrastructure from increasingly sophisticated cyber threats and attacks. Traditional security methods such as network firewalls, antivirus programs, and endpoint protection are not sufficient to prevent motivated threat actors from compromising business-critical systems and sensitive data resources.
Threat actors have developed ingenious ways to circumvent legacy security controls. Modern cyberthreats require new techniques and additional tools to provide robust security. Extended detection and response (XDR) is an approach to cybersecurity in which threats are identified and responded to before they can cause damage.
Types of XDR Technology
XDR solutions can be categorized as being either native or open.
Native XDR is an all-inclusive platform in which one vendor directly collects all telemetry. XDR is one component in a suite of products. No integrations are necessary as a single platform is responsible for threat detection and analytics. Native XDR solutions suffer from challenging implementations and a lack of third-party integrations for additional functionality. In some cases, integrations simply replicate alerts from other technologies rather than incorporating telemetry for enhanced threat detection.
Open XDR can also be referred to as hybrid XDR. The name does not denote the use of open source tools, but rather the way the solutions are designed to integrate with other security tools. Implementation does not require removing current tools but incorporating their data streams to enhance threat intelligence and provide a comprehensive security solution. An intrinsic element of an Open XDR platform is its ability to perform cross-domain analysis using telemetry from diverse vendors and technologies. This is an important capability when trying to track down Advanced Persistent Threats.
Why Integrate XDR with an Existing Security Infrastructure?
Several reasons should influence your decision to integrate XDR with existing security services and tools.
- Integrations help address the cybersecurity skills shortage that is leading to insufficient staffing and more security vulnerabilities.
- Integration is necessary to handle increasingly sophisticated attacks on an expanding and complex attack surface.
- Protecting your business objectives requires robust security that typically cannot be implemented with a single tool.
- Effective integration reduces the probability of an expensive data breach. Comprehensive security solutions working together provide additional protection for sensitive data assets.
- Integration allows you to centralize all of your alerting, triage, investigation and threat hunting in a single platform, rather than being stuck with “swivel-chair management”.
Benefits of Integrating XDR Into Your Security Strategy
Many specific benefits to integrating XDR into your existing security strategy address the reasons for XDR integration we have just discussed.
- Enhanced threat detection - The ability to perform enhanced threat detection is a foundational feature of an XDR solution. Through the use of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) technology, XDR identifies weak signals that may indicate the presence of advanced persistent threats or other risks to the environment.
- Automated threat response - It is impossible to manage the current volume and diversity of cyber threats manually. XDR’s automation can provide fast and accurate automated responses for routine threats.
- Threat prioritization for further investigation - An XDR solution can prioritize threats so more dangerous or unique alerts can be investigated by the security team. Automation can handle typical threats while uncommon instances can be subjected to more intense study.
- Improved visibility by consolidating all telemetry and threat information - XDR provides comprehensive visibility into the complete environment. Threats affecting the network and endpoints which are detected by diverse collectors are consolidated into a single tool to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of the security team. This also means that threat hunting can be conducted from a single location.
- Reduction of false positive alerts - False positive alerts waste the security team’s precious time and effort. The advanced analytics capabilities of an XDR solution reduce false positives so the team can concentrate on actual threats to the environment.
- Minimizing the overload on security teams - Benefits such as threat prioritization and the reduction of false positives minimize the stress and overload on security teams. This will limit human error from overworked security personnel and result in a more secure infrastructure.
- Addressing gaps in traditional security controls - XDR can detect threats missed by traditional security controls. The speed with which the threat landscape is evolving makes it highly likely that threat actors can circumvent security controls. XDR makes it possible to detect new threats as they evolve. By taking a holistic view of the environment, low fidelity signals that would not ordinarily be considered a threat can be automatically correlated to identify potential risks.
Best Practices for XDR Integration
When integrating an open XDR solution into your current environment, it’s wise to employ the following best practices.
- Establish informative communication with all stakeholders so they understand how XDR will affect their roles.
- Develop incident response procedures to minimize the danger of detected threats.
- Start small to get a feel for the functionality and utility of the solution.
- Connect to one data source at a time to ensure proper compatibility and integration.
- Implement the tool in test environments to work out any issues before going live with production systems.
- Develop a process to review the threats detected by the XDR platform. By reviewing threats detected against a framework like MITRE ATT&CK, you can identify weaknesses in your security posture that need to be strengthened. Your XDR platform should also help by mapping alerts against a framework like MITRE ATT&CK.
Potential Issues with XDR Integration
An organization may run into issues or problems that impact the viability or success of XDR integration. These issues can reduce the effectiveness of XDR or in some cases, make it impossible to successfully implement the solution.
- Attempting multiple complex integrations simultaneously can impact their success. It can be difficult to isolate issues so they can be effectively addressed when more than one integration is being attempted at the same time. Proceed methodically for the best results.
- Broken workflows or incident playbooks do not reflect the contribution of the XDR solution. Make sure that XDR’s functionality is reflected in all incident procedures to avoid this problem.
- A lack of integrations to enable communication between the XDR platform and existing tools can thwart integration plans. Look for an XDR solution that provides the integrations necessary to make productive use of tools currently in use throughout the environment.
An Open XDR Solution
Samurai XDR is an open solution that can be integrated with existing security tools and processes. It is a security platform that can be integrated with a wide range of data sources from Cisco, Microsoft, VMware, and others. Its ability to perform extended detection democratizes the security playing field by bringing capabilities previously reserved for large corporations with big budgets to organizations of any size.
Samurai XDR provides advanced threat intelligence that furnishes insight into the origin of an attack, its motivation, and how it can be stopped. It’s powered by AI/ML technology that ensures it can fight today’s threats as well as those that emerge in the future.
Get in touch with Samurai and put in a request for a free private beta invitation. You can get a sense of the enhanced security possible with Samurai XDR and provide input regarding features and enhancements you would like to see incorporated into the platform.
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