With the “detect early” and “respond fast” capabilities in your mind, you may wonder what to choose from the XDR vs SIEM vs SOAR options.

A good Detection and Response (D&R) solution is essential for your company’s cybersecurity posture. As you can achieve the goal of detecting security threats, responding to them, and preventing proactively future incidents by using the right combination of tools.

XDR software can streamline data collection from multiple sources in the IT environment, SIEM provides useful features for data retention and compliance, and SOAR focuses on response resource management through its orchestration capabilities.

Let’s define all three security solutions and see if they can replace each other or not.

What is XDR?

Extended Detection and Response (XDR) is a security solution that gathers and analyzes data from multiple sources like endpoints, networks, cloud, emails, apps, etc. It offers great visibility into a company’s IT infrastructure, helping the security employees to detect more threats, respond efficiently, and deal with fewer false positive alerts.

This solution integrates several tools combining all the gathered data into a single platform to visualize the information. It might incorporate automated processes (even complex ones), machine learning, and advanced analytics to enable quicker and more effective incident response. It can deal even with hidden and advanced malware.

XDR is the next step from Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR) solutions that focus only on protecting endpoints.

XDR vs SIEM vs SOAR: A Comparison

XDR Features

The best XDR software helps security teams to have more visibility, to accelerate incident response, and to identify threats faster.

  • Collects data from endpoints, cloud, networks, etc.
  • Matches against each other, and analyze all the gathered data.
  • Uses automation and artificial intelligence (AI) tools.
  • Offers the conclusions to the security team through a single console.
  • Unifies siloed security tools as well as their investigation and response capabilities.
  • Sometimes offers access to security experts when is a managed solution.

What is SIEM?

Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) solutions record and store log and event data from multiple sources like antivirus software, intrusion detection, etc. In order to identify threats, it establishes the user’s and system’s behavior and detects anomalies.

Offers to security teams perspectives and suggestions for handling potential security threats.

These tools and services combine Security Events Management (SEM) and Security Information Management (SIM) capabilities.

XDR vs SIEM vs SOAR: A Comparison

SIEM Features

SIEM efficiently gathers, stores, and analyzes data from all network applications and hardware.

  • Gathers data from the organization’s environment.
  • Uses data to recognize, classify, and examine incidents and events.
  • Combines all gathered data into one report.
  • Uses data to send security alerts and to offer support for incident response.
  • Offers visibility into malicious activity (it may take more than one SIEM solution to achieve that).

What is SOAR?

Security Orchestration Automation and Response (SOAR) solutions focus on automating the response processes and triage capabilities. The main goal is to oversee security without human help as much as possible. It might use artificial intelligence and machine learning to assess security events and automate incident response procedures.

These solutions can be a standalone product, or it can be added to SIEM solutions since SOAR doesn’t excel in event analysis.

XDR vs SIEM vs SOAR: A Comparison

SOAR Features

SOAR platforms make incident response automatic, so they will boost productivity and shorten the response time.

  • Collects data about security threats.
  • Automates threat response and triages threats, reducing the need for human intervention.
  • Unifies tools for threat and vulnerability management, security incident response, and security operations automation.
  • Analyzes data with the help of a security team as well as by using machine learning (ML).

XDR vs SIEM vs SOAR: Differences

While XDR, SIEM, and SOAR target related applications – security event analysis and response – they do so in fundamentally different ways.

Extended Detection and Response (XDR):

  • High analysis capabilities and full visibility into the IT infrastructure in a single, centralized solution.
  • Prioritizes security events.
  • Quick response time to threats, even to most hidden and sophisticated ones.
  • Designed to complete SIEM and SOAR features.
  • Requires knowledge of security technologies such as endpoint security, network security, cloud security, etc.

Security Information and Event Management (SIEM):

  • Is primarily a log collection software.
  • It is designed to enable data storage and analysis, but also to support compliance needs.
  • Does not effectively identify risks without a separate security analytic function
  • Susceptible to false positives due to the data it works with.
  • Requires security analytics skills to ensure that the security events and logs are correctly analyzed and anomalies are correctly detected, as well as knowledge of compliance laws.

Security Orchestration Automation and Response (SOAR):

  • Adds orchestration, automation, and response capabilities to the SIEM. In essence, SOAR responds to the data that SIEM delivers.
  • Helps security tools to better work with each other, hence the “orchestration” part.
  • Does not analyze large amounts of data and can’t protect data or systems by himself.
  • Requires expertise in integration to ensure that the solution can correctly work with the existing security infrastructure of the organization.

XDR vs SIEM vs SOAR: Which Is the Best Fit for You?

To make the best decision for your organization’s cybersecurity, think about what problems can each solution solve for you:

Extended Detection and Response (XDR):

  • Enhanced real-time threat detection and visibility into security events.
  • Protection from complex and advanced threats that frequently avoid detection by conventional security methods.

Security Information and Event Management (SIEM):

  • Centralized security incident monitoring and notification.
  • Enormous amounts of security data from diverse sources are collected, normalized, and correlatively analyzed to provide a comprehensive picture of the security posture of a company.
  • Abilities in forensic analysis and capacity to report compliance.

Security Orchestration Automation and Response (SOAR):

  • To increase the speed and effectiveness of incident response, by automating and coordinating operations including triaging alerts, acquiring threat intelligence, and carrying out reaction actions.
  • To hasten the resolution process and lessen the effect of security incidents.

How Can Heimdal® Help?

Heimdal’s Extended Detection and Response solution will continuously check your communications systems, servers, endpoints, and connected devices for indicators of a cyberattack.

You can find many of the features of an MDR service in our Extended Detection and Response powered SOC Service, which ensures:

  • Constant monitoring, 24/7/365;
  • Minimized response times and enhanced productivity;
  • Complete network visibility;
  • Real-time phone or email alerts in the event of an infection or attack;
  • False-positive management, pre-incident assessment, “noise” reduction;
  • Systemized, comprehensive reports on potential threats, malware, and vulnerabilities;
  • Actionable advice on how to strengthen your security policies and procedures;
  • Inspection of policy settings to ensure maximum compliance.
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Wrapping Up…

Throughout this article, we analyzed the XDR vs SIEM vs SOAR dilemma. But their distinct capabilities lead un to only one conclusion: for a solid cybersecurity posture you need all three solutions, working together.

XDR can’t substitute SIEM and SOAR. The goal of XDR is to combine both SIEM and SOAR use cases, which place more emphasis on detection and response, respectively. To put it another way, XDR functions fine on its own but is more effective when used in conjunction with SIEM and SOAR tools.

XDR will focus on threat detection, SIEM handles log management, compliance, and data analysis that is not threat related, while SOAR offers valuable orchestration capabilities.

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