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What Is Managed Detection and Response (MDR)?

Managed detection and response (MDR) is an outsourced approach to cybersecurity where third parties handle threat monitoring, detection, and response. Specifically, the MDR model pairs real-time monitoring and detection of ransomware, malware, and other security intrusions with rapid incident response to address and eliminate the threats.

Key Characteristics That Define MDR

The most important components of MDR include threat intelligence, threat hunting, security monitoring, incident analysis, and incident response. The key pillars of this approach rely on the strength of the tools and technology the security provider uses and the expertise and dedicated support provided by external security professionals.

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In general, MDR providers will use their own security solutions in the organization’s network environment, meaning that while vetting providers, you will want to pick a provider that can integrate easily with your existing tools and technologies. The specific techniques MDR providers use may vary by their approach to security monitoring, level of automation in security response, and the data sources they use for threat intelligence.

What MDR is not, however, is a replacement for compliance within your organization. MDR largely focuses on threat detection and response and is generally not involved with your security protocols, controls, and other internal operations.

MDR vs. MSSP: What’s the Difference?

Managed security service providers (MSSPs) are different from MDRs in that MSSPs will monitor network security, but they merely provide alerts when security aberrations are detected instead of investigating and responding to threats. With an MSSP, a security anomaly is tagged and reported to your IT staff—including potential false positives—with the burden of investigation and addressing threats left to your internal team.

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What Are the Main Benefits of MDR?

The most glaring issue that MDR addresses for growing organizations is covering for skill gaps that internal IT security teams possess in the threat detection and response phase of threat management. With the growing complexity and impact that security threats present to organizations, MDR providers offer a scalable solution to a CISO who’s facing qualified labor shortages, training difficulties, and technological infrastructure issues. It also amplifies the reach of your existing security team by freeing them from the time-consuming process of investigating and responding to every security anomaly.

Why Trust ReliaQuest for MDR?

    • Our Open XDR approach allows us to bring in over 30+ open data sources (and any paid sources available to your organization) that automatically collect, normalize, and correlate your security data in a single, user-friendly platform.
    • ReliaQuest GreyMatter integrates with your existing solutions and technologies, avoiding the costly process of replacing technology platforms.
    • 24/7/365 support from a team of world-class professionals.
    • Evolving automated detection and response based on the most up-to-date security intelligence and machine learning.
    • Recapture time and cover skill gaps for your existing IT security team.

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