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Blog | Sep 27, 2018

MSSPs chasing the MDR dream? The good, the bad, the ugly

If you’re up-to-date on cyber security trends, you’ve seen many traditional Managed Security Services Providers (MSSPs) starting to beat the Managed Detection and Response (MDR) drum. Fundamentally, however, it’s difficult for them to deliver the higher value of a pure-play MDR provider because hunting is just not in their DNA. Quite simply, they are stuck in the wrong model of analyzing data against established run books, then spitting out a report or chart each month/quarter to “show value.”

On the other hand, providers such as eSentire that are rooted in MDR demonstrate value every day—not at the end of a monthly reporting cycle—by proactively contributing with regular rule submissions to industry threat feeds, along with our own internal feeds. In fact, at eSentire, we daily define hunting methods to continuously deliver results with new IOC and rule set submissions and ever-evolving hunting methodologies that go beyond an event to wrap customer context around data to drive decisions.

Don’t be fooled. MSSPs attempting to rally around MDR is akin to handing someone an advanced tool with no training, no manual or instruction on how to use it. Real MDR is a combination of the right tech, the right people, with the right knowledge to do the right thing on behalf of the customer. Real MDR wraps context around the data to enable smart security decisions that are more informed than a scripted reaction to a log event that has popped in a SIEM or some other appliance.

The true 24/7 response of a pure-play MDR provider vs. an on-call or concierge-style engineer who must be paged to attend to critical events is the only way to provide around-the-clock value. eSentire prides itself on having an SOC team that is a self-sustaining unit and doesn’t have to wake up a Tier 2 or 3 resource to respond to an event, because those expert team members are part of the picture 24/7/365.

Rob Martin

Rob Martin

Vice President, SOC Operations