The decision to buy a Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) product or outsource to a Managed Detection and Response (MDR) service depends on a number of factors, including the size of your organization, the complexity of your IT infrastructure, and your overall security needs.
Should I buy a SIEM?
If you have a large and complex IT environment, a dedicated SIEM might be a better option. This is because SIEMs provide a centralized platform for collecting and analyzing security event data from across your network. Additionally, your security operations team has full control over the configuration, customization, and management of the solution. However, a SIEM requires your organization to have basic resources in place to effectively operate it.
Basic resources needed to operate a SIEM:
- Hardware: SIEMs typically require a dedicated server or a cluster of servers with sufficient memory, storage, and processing power to handle the volume of log data generated by the various systems and devices on a network.
- Software: A SIEM solution requires an operating system, a database management system, and the SIEM software itself. Some solutions may also require additional software components such as log collectors, log parsers, and correlation engines.
- Staffing: Implementing a SIEM, ongoing maintenance and administration typically requires the expertise of security professionals with experience in security event management and log analysis which will require dedicated SIEM engineering talent.
The cost to implement and run a SIEM can vary widely depending on the solution and your specific needs. Some factors that can impact the cost include on-premise SIEM infrastructure cost or using a cloud SIEM (i.e. Microsoft Sentinel), size of the network and the volume of log data generated, the complexity of your security requirements, and the cost of ongoing maintenance and support.
In general, SIEMs can be a significant investment for organizations, but it can also provide significant benefits in terms of improved security and threat detection, with continued investment and commitment.
Should I outsource to a MDR Provider?
On the other hand, if you don’t have a complex use case, you have limited in-house security resources, or you’d like to augment your current security operations, an MDR service might be a more practical solution. MDR provides you with access to security experts who can help you detect, respond to, and mitigate security threats. The service includes 24/7 monitoring, which can be beneficial if your organization lacks the personnel to manage security around the clock.
The most accomplished MDR vendors provide a range of adjacent security services to organizations—threat hunting, DFIR, penetration testing, cyber advisory, etc. These vendors offer a proactive approach to security, helping organizations identify and respond to potential security threats in real-time and providing the expertise to mature your security program over time.
Some of the key benefits of working with an MDR vendor include:
- Access to expertise: MDR vendors typically employ security experts who have specialized skills, experience, and knowledge to detect, respond, and hunt for cyber threats.
- Proactive monitoring: MDR vendors use a combination of technology and human expertise to monitor networks for potential threats around the clock.
- Real-time threat detection: With access to advanced security tools, ML/AI, and sophisticated techniques, MDR vendors can detect threats in real-time and take action to prevent a breach.
- Rapid incident response: MDR vendors have the resources to respond quickly to security incidents, helping organizations to minimize the impact of an incident or breach.
- Comprehensive threat coverage and threat intelligence: Includes coverage for a wide range of security threats, and curated threat intelligence unique to each vendor.
When choosing a vendor, it's important to consider experience, reputation, and the range of supporting services they offer to help you scale your security operations.
A SIEM technology and an MDR service are two different security solutions that have different resource requirements. Compared to a SIEM, MDR can be a more cost-effective option for organizations, as it eliminates the need for in-house hardware, software, and staffing resources, and shifts the responsibility for security management and response to the MDR service provider.
Moreover, MDR services can be easily scaled to meet the changing security demands of your organization, without the need for additional in-house staffing. Ultimately, the choice will depend on your specific requirements, budget, and resources.
If you still have questions, we can help. Speak to one of our security experts to determine the best solution for your organization.
Are you looking for MDR Services? Trustwave Managed Detection and Response
What about a Cloud SIEM like Sentinel? Trustwave Service for Microsoft
Already have a SIEM? Trustwave Co-Managed SOC