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What Is The Difference Between XDR and SIEM?

09 May, 2023 by Carlos Arnal

Over the past twenty years, security information and event management (SIEM) platforms have been one of the key solutions for cybersecurity management, as they help security teams centralize attack and threat detection activities. The cybersecurity industry is now shifting towards a new type of solution known as extended detection and response (XDR).

As the two technologies are similar and have overlapping capabilities, many people still don’t know how they differ. However, choosing the right solution is critical to building an effective and sustainable security architecture that supports the needs customers require from MSPs.

Key differences between XDR and SIEM

The crucial difference between XDR and SIEM is that the latter adopts a more general approach that makes it less effective than XDR platforms, which are highly specialized in correlating security information and can detect attacks and threats with considerably less effort. SIEM tools enable organizations to collect logs and alerts from multiple solutions. However, this technology does not include analytics or automation, unlike XDR which incorporates EDR and MDR elements, forming an end-to-end solution that enhances detection and response. XDR uses the data collected from SIEM to provide a more manageable level of alerts and data, making it the ideal complement to SIEM technology.

Moreover, you could say that XDR offers an alternative to traditional reactive approaches that provide layered visibility into attacks, such as EDR, NDR and User Behavior Analysis (UBA) or even SIEM. It is capable of implementing response actions by obtaining data from different sources, correlating and classifying them automatically to generate a detection.  Once a threat has been detected it is awarded a criticality score based on which a specific action is performed, which can also be programmed to be carried out afterwards, or in the future whenever a situation that meets those same criteria occurs.  In comparison, SIEM is passive and informs users by generating alerts that must be managed by qualified personnel.

The following four points highlight the key differences between the two solutions:

1. Objective:

Most SIEM solutions provide centralized log management and analysis capabilities for an organization. This involves generating alerts, correlating data from multiple selected solutions, and enabling post-event analysis. SIEM can also be used for compliance monitoring, containment, and more comprehensive reporting.

XDR focuses on using the data it collects to improve threat detection and response. Its goal is to identify, investigate and take appropriate action to resolve incidents quickly and efficiently.

2. Management complexity:

As they are more open, SIEM solutions often require substantial management effort to connect them to data sources, correlate events and configure alerts. Given the amount of information they handle for centralized visibility, they produce a large volume of individual alerts that are difficult to classify and prioritize.

In contrast, XDR solutions are designed to integrate more easily into a company’s security architecture. The advantage this delivers is that it reduces the number of relevant alerts, which may otherwise be overlooked.  By deploying automatic correlation of data from different security layers alerts can be confirmed automatically, thus reducing the time security analysts need to evaluate alerts and risks and decide what needs attention and further investigation. In addition, centralized configuration, which generates alert weighting, helps prioritize which actions need to be taken. XDR also requires fewer training hours and delivers unified management and workflow experience across multiple security components.

3. Data storage:

While SIEM solutions act as a central data repository for security companies like MSPs and enable long-term storage, XDR typically accesses data from other sources, which it stores at temporarily solely for analysis purposes.

4. Responsiveness:

Although most current SIEMs also have some response capabilities, they are, in principle, a data analysis tool that can provide MSPs with the data and alerts needed to identify the threats attacking an organization. XDR extends these capabilities and can support and coordinate response efforts within the same solution.

How can MSPs guide their customers to choose the solutions that best suit their needs?

MSPs need leverage as they compete to meet their customers’ changing security requirements. By adding solutions such as XDR and SIEM to their offering, they can help organizations strengthen their security while improving their own operational efficiency. However, to add value through these solutions, they must be able to guide their customers and recommend the best fit for their needs.

SIEM can be a useful tool if the customer has the time and resources to dedicate to it. For instance, if the company has compliance and operational risk management requirements, in addition to threat detection, they may require SIEM to meet those broader reporting and data collection demands.

If the company already uses a SIEM solution, it is advisable to incorporate an XDR solution to complement and amplify the team’s response capabilities.

The main challenge SIEM poses is alert fatigue. These solutions generate a large number of alerts, including false positives, so if the customer has a small team, having to classify and investigate all of them can become overwhelming. As it’s a broader and more complex solution, the costs are higher, which more moderate-sized companies may not be able to afford.

XDR is ideal for small to medium-sizedmidsize companies, as it saves resources, time and costs. But it is important to emphasize that it is a more specialized solution, while SIEM is broader and can correlate more disparate data including other solutions beyond the firewall and endpoints such as proxy or application logs.  Nonetheless, automation eliminates much of the work required by a SIEM solution and this technology does not require such a high level of specialization from the team, which is welcome, given the current shortage of specialized cybersecurity talent. To some extent, an XDR solution like WatchGuard’s ThreatSync solves some of the main challenges posed by SIEM solutions, but ultimately, it will all come down to the individual customer’s capabilities and situation.

Webinar: How XDR Can Help MSPs Scale and Grow Their Businesses

20 April, 2023 by Adisa Hairlahovic


Cyberattacks are becoming ever more sophisticated, leaving MSPs struggling to stay ahead of the game with their limited tools and fragmented views. Join us in this webinar as we explore XDR – a modern approach that helps strengthen cybersecurity capabilities and offers comprehensive protection for customers. Join us in this webinar, where we’ll give you XDR essential concepts and the keys to free up overwhelmed security teams trying to triage and identify attacks with only narrow, disjointed attack viewpoints.

We’ll be covering the following:

  • What is XDR? Why is it important for MSPs? What is XDR used for?
  • How XDR helps to enhance your MSP’s security posture with customers
  • What elements are required to make XDR possible for MSPs while not disrupting business?

Watch this on-demand webinar now!

The Security of ONE Platform

17 April, 2023 by acogswell

Traditional, long-standing approaches to cybersecurity have become obsolete in recent years. Modern threat actors employ sophisticated, automated, and unrelenting techniques that make their attacks more intricate, evasive, and pervasive than ever. MSPs can no longer rely on a complex set of specialized, “best-of-breed” security solutions from multiple vendors to protect customer environments, users, and devices. This antiquated approach leads to operational inefficiencies, wasted time and resources, and visibility gaps that lead to weaker security overall.

So, last year we introduced the world to the concept of The Security of ONE:

  • ONE Vision – for a world in which cybersecurity technology is as powerful as it is simple, and where MSPs are equipped to save the world.
  • ONE Partner – that streamlines every aspect of security consumption, delivery, and management.
  • ONE Platform – that unifies, simplifies, and elevates the security your customers need today and into the future.

In 2023, it’s clear that disconnected security is dead. As a modern MSP, you need a unified, simplified approach to security. You need the security of ONE Platform.

WatchGuard’s Unified Security Platform® architecture is ONE single platform for elevating modern security delivery. Our unified approach helps you deliver powerful security services for networks, endpoints, and users with increased scale and velocity, while supporting operational efficiencies and greater profitability.

The platform offers the comprehensive security, clarity and control, shared knowledge, operational alignment, and automation you need to deliver powerful, profitable protection at scale.

Now, we’re inviting you to get to know our Unified Security Platform architecture on a deeper level. Learn how to harness the power of the Security of ONE, familiarize yourself with the anatomy of unified security, and see our platform in action here.

Amplify Your Security Efficacy With WatchGuard ThreatSync the XDR Realm Awaits

11 April, 2023 by Carlos Arnal

In today’s cybersecurity landscape, comprehensive threat visibility and rapid detection and response are critical. Cybercriminals are becoming increasingly sophisticated, and specialized security solutions aren’t integrated or intelligent enough to keep up. Disconnected security solutions lack cross-domain visibility, allowing attacks to exploit blind spots and leading to slow detections, inaccurate response actions, and operational inefficiency.

That’s where extended detection and response (XDR) comes in. It offers the cross-product context and visibility you need to identify and remediate threats with more speed and accuracy. Leave the world of siloed security behind with WatchGuard ThreatSync as your XDR solution.

Access the XDR realm to boost your team’s efficiency and secure your clients’ future.

WatchGuard ThreatSync is our fully integrated XDR solution. It enables a unified security approach that better meets clients’ security demands while reducing the time and resources required to manage multiple security tools

Learn more about adopting XDR and enhancing your security practice by Accessing the XDR Realm: A guide for MSPs to unleash the power of unified security. You’ll learn about today’s top cybersecurity challenges, why XDR is your gateway to modern security, ThreatSync, WatchGuard’s Unified Security Platform approach, and much more.

Webinar: Top Security Threats Worldwide Q4 2022

1o April, 2023 by Adisa Hairlahovic

Join WatchGuard CSO Corey Nachreiner and Security Engineer Trevor Collins as they discuss key findings from the WatchGuard Threat Lab’s 2022 Q4 Internet Security Report. They’ll cover the latest malware and network attack trends targeting small and midsized enterprises and defensive tips you can take back to your organization to stay ahead of modern threat actor tactics.

In this webinar you’ll learn:

  • The top malware and network attack trends that targeted small and midsized businesses globally
  • The latest ransomware variants that made the rounds in Q4 2022
  • The malicious domains attackers used most in the quarter

Watch this on-demand webinar now!