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How to Select the Best XDR Solution for a Comprehensive Cybersecurity


As attack vectors continue to grow in today’s perimeter-less world, the threat landscape is expanding rapidly. While attackers are building upon this, it is becoming challenging for the security teams to cope with the increasing challenges. Hence, most businesses have to use multiple security tools, most probably from various vendors, to detect and prevent cybersecurity risks.

While these tools provide several security benefits, they also bring in some challenges. The increasing number of tools requires more resources to manage them, thereby quickly overwhelming the cybersecurity team. Additionally, these tools are dedicated to solving a specific security challenge. For instance, a firewall is limited to securing data and file transmission over the network. Since the security tools work in isolation, they cannot connect the dots across the entire IT infrastructure. This is where Extended Detection and Response (XDR) comes into the picture.

What is an XDR?

As the name gives out, XDR is a comprehensive next-generation cybersecurity solution for detecting and responding to threats in your IT posture. Unlike other security tools that are limited to solving certain security issues, XDR goes beyond by providing comprehensive cybersecurity. It covers everything across the technology stack, including endpoint devices, firewall, network, cloud, routers, etc. Gartner, therefore, listed XDR as the number 1 trend in its top security and risk trends 2020 list.

Unlike traditional tools working in isolation, XDR is an all-in-one solution that brings together and connects data across the systems for enhanced analytics to provide actionable insights to your security teams. This reduces the number of alerts and increases the efficiency of threat detection and response. XDR offers several other features and advantages that make it the right choice for securing your organization.

Exploring the Features and Advantages of XDR

The most significant reason behind the hype and success of XDR is the features and benefits that the solution provides. It takes up all the burden of monitoring and securing the entire IT infrastructure to free up and enable your security team to focus on core areas. Here are some of the features and advantages of XDR.

Features of XDR

Extended Analytics and Detection

  • XDR solutions can analyze and detect threats in both the internal and external environment. Thus, it can easily detect any existing risks that might have bypassed traditional tools.
  • Backed by Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning, XDR solutions can combine and analyze system data to enhance detection and prevention. For instance, it can integrate information on known attacks, tools, and strategies to detect any potential risk.
  • With the help of AI and ML, XDR can monitor and analyze network, endpoint, and user behavior to detect and flag any unusual activities.

Extended Investigation and Response

  • As already mentioned, XDR can integrate data across the technology stack to automatically group related alerts and helps the cybersecurity team to get to the root cause of an attack.
  • XDR solutions can provide quick and automated responses to any attacks. They can also enable experts to analyze and respond to threats from a single dashboard, becoming a single pane of glass for all information and actions.
  • Moreover, XDRs can orchestrate a response. Thus, even if a threat is detected in a single device, XDR can start the response actions on all the devices. This will mitigate all the risks that might have occurred due to lateral movement done before the detection.

Benefits of XDR

With its capabilities to extend detection and response through enhanced threat intelligence, AI/ML capabilities, and security orchestration, XDR solutions offer the following benefits:

  • Provides enhanced connectivity and context by combining data across multiple touchpoints
  • Goes beyond traditional EPP or EDR solutions to cover everything from endpoint devices and firewall to cloud and network
  • Reduces stack complexity by unifying the features and capabilities of various security tools
  • Reduces the required resources and total cost of ownership
  • Enables security orchestration with the help of AI and ML
  • Centralizes data from different tools to increase visibility and the efficiency of risk alerts

How XDR Enhances End-to-End Cybersecurity

Cyberattackers are coming up with innovative ideas to penetrate systems, which traditional security tools cannot detect. XDR provides granular visibility across the security posture to detect sophisticated threats. Additionally, integrating data across systems and creating a contextual story improves threat intelligence capabilities to mitigate risks.

Detecting the root cause quickly with the help of AI and ML enables XDR solutions to initiate automated responses to prevent lateral movement in the systems to minimize the consequences. Additionally, it goes beyond traditional monitoring, detection, and hunting, to cover everything and provide comprehensive security. This total security is essential in today’s remote workforce era.

5 Factors to Consider While Choosing the Right XDR Solution

While all XDR solutions aim to provide end-to-end security, not all of them are the same. There are several options out there, and choosing the right one can be overwhelming. However, selecting the right vendor and XDR solution is essential to get optimal security. Here are a few factors and questions you can consider to choose the best XDR solution for your business.

XDR Architecture: Open XDR vs. Native XDR

Before diving into anything else, let’s understand the core difference between a native and open XDR.

Native XDR: Native XDR is based on a closed security architecture where the XDR solution can only integrate with the security tools provided by the same vendor. Thus, to deploy a Native XDR, you will have to deploy the entire security suite offered by the vendor.

Open XDR: As the name suggests, Open XDR can integrate with any tools from any vendor. Open XDRs can leverage your existing tools’ detection and response capabilities across the IT posture for enhanced cybersecurity.

You can prefer Native XDR if you rely on a single vendor for all the IT and security tools. In that case, Native XDR can be a good candidate. While a few organizations might be okay with shifting their security stack over to a single vendor and deploying Native XDR, it is not an ideal solution. Hence, adopting an Open XDR should be your top priority, and there are numerous reasons behind this.

  • Efficiency

XDR can be more effective if it can seamlessly integrate with any solution. Native XDRs cannot integrate with your existing security tools, thereby limiting the potential of XDR solutions. For instance, if you need to keep even a single existing security tool in your environment due to its importance, the Native XDR won’t integrate with it. This will lead to siloed data and isolation of that particular tool, further leading to inefficiency. Hence, Open XDR solutions are ideal for enhancing the overall security efficiency.

  • No Vendor Lock-in

Native XDRs require you to migrate your security stack to a single vendor’s solutions. This is almost like marrying the vendor, which is not likely the best case in the real world. The thing is that everyone has certain expertise and specialties. A single vendor cannot provide the best-in-class tools for everything. With Open XDR, you get the option to select different vendors specializing in various domains to optimize security.

  • Enhanced Security

Native XDR cannot provide comprehensive security. The most significant reason is that in a Native architecture, all the security tools are developed by a single vendor and may follow the same approach to detect threats across vectors. The reason behind having multiple security layers: firewall, internal network, application level, etc., is to improve overall security. But while using Native XDR, if one layer of protection fails to detect risk, the chances are that other levels will miss it too. Open XDRs overcome this challenge by integrating security tools developed by different vendors to deliver end-to-end security. Seamless integration offered by Open XDR enables comprehensive and correlated detection and response.

  • Reduced Costs

You would have most likely spent thousands and even millions of dollars in deploying your current security solutions. Native XDR makes all these tools and spendings obsolete, thereby bringing down the ROI. On the other hand, Open XDR solutions leverage and integrate existing tools to reduce costs and increase ROI.

Number of Attack Vectors Covered

With digitalization, the number of attack vectors is increasing, and so is the number of cyberattacks. Any vector not covered by your XDR solution is a loophole to be exploited. Hence, it is essential to identify how many attacks vectors your XDR solution covers. For comprehensive security, you need a solution that covers everything, including:

  • Endpoints (corporate and personal end-devices, IoT devices, IIoT devices, etc.)
  • Network (home, corporate, private, public)
  • Cloud (public, private, SaaS)
  • Cloud and third-party applications
  • APIs
  • Email
  • Identity
  • Wired or wireless access
  • Web and mobile applications, etc.

The extent of Cyber Kill Stages Covered

Adversaries have to go through certain stages to execute a cyberattack successfully. For instance, the MITRE ATT&CK Framework, considered the benchmark, highlights 14 tactics or stages that an attack has to go through. These stages are referred to as the attack or cyber kill chain. Detecting and preventing the progress of an attack at any of these stages is a successful defense. The maximum detections you can have on the MITRE, the better is your solution.

Since MITRE ATT&CK Framework is the benchmark, the XDR solution you select must be mapped with it. An appropriately mapped solution will provide maximum MITRE coverage and visibility across the kill chain.

Recognized SIEM

The core aim of an XDR solution is to integrate data across the security posture to provide visibility for live threat hunting and instant responses. However, this is not possible without an efficient SIEM. Hence, the SIEM that backs up your XDR solution must be industry-recognized and enable you to monitor and manage logs hassle-free.

Comprehensive Security

Most XDRs are limited to detection, analytics, and response. However, the services covered by a solution vary from vendor to vendor. The best XDR solution is the one that goes beyond advanced detection and response to cover compliance and awareness. Thus, you need to prefer a solution that includes services, such as:

  • Compliance with international standards
  • Periodic vulnerability assessments and penetration testings to proactively hunt for potential loopholes
  • File integrity monitoring to detect and respond to malicious files

How SharkStriker XDR Solution can Help the Businesses

XDR is the next generation of cybersecurity. However, not all XDRs are alike. Hence, you need to select the best solution for your organization, and SharkStriker provides one. SharkStriker’s all-in-one Open XDR solution goes above and beyond traditional MDRs and XDRs to offer comprehensive security. Our XDR is compatible with and can easily integrate with your existing security tools. Moreover, it is mapped with the MITRE ATT&CK Framework kill chain and designed to detect and prevent attacks.

The solution is backed by a best-in-class SOC team working 24/7 to provide enhanced cybersecurity round the clock. It leverages SIEM that is recognized by Gartner in the 2021 Gartner Magic Quadrant for SIEM. We have designed our XDR to cover all the attack vectors across the entire IT infrastructure and beyond to eliminate any loopholes that can lead to vulnerabilities.

Our XDR solution is based on the ORCA philosophy representing Observe, Response, Compliance, and Awareness. Through our platform, our XDR solution can free you from all the security challenges, right from detection and response to integration to compliance and awareness. Unlike most XDR solutions that offer only machine-accelerated threat hunting and automated response, our XDR solution goes a step beyond to help you stay aligned with international compliances through periodic assessments and assistance in developing and implementing security protocols. Additionally, it also enables you to simulate real-world-like attacks to train your employees for security awareness. Thus, SharkStriker’s Extended Detection and Response solution can secure your business and make it resilient to cyberattacks.

With the number of cyberattacks constantly rising, it’s time to make a move and switch to XDR. However, it is only wise to select the best fit for your organization.