Using XDR to Detect Cyber Security Threats – Here’s How

What is a cyber security threat? It can be defined as any malicious action that compromises a system’s confidentiality, integrity, or availability. The rate that cyber security threats are evolving and increasing has led to a lot of concern. Events such as the WannaCry and Petya ransomware attacks have demonstrated the potential for catastrophic effects on critical services.

In order to combat these trends, it’s important to be aware of what you can do to detect and respond to these threats. Here is how extended detection and response (XDR) can help you with your cyber security needs.

What Is XDR (Extended Detection and Response)?

An important element of any successful cyber defense strategy is detecting an advanced persistent threat (APT) before it can perform any damage. This is where XDR (Extended Detection and Response) becomes a critical defense tool.

A basic XDR software implementation has two stages – detection and response. The purpose of this is to identify and block malware threats that are evading basic detection and remediation solutions. In some cases, you may need to expand your defense by implementing XDR across endpoints in order to effectively respond and neutralize attack campaigns.

How XDR Can Protect You

As a technology, Extended Detection and Response (XDR) works by collecting and automatically correlating data across multiple security layers to provide visibility into complex, previously undetected network attacks.

This makes XDR an invaluable tool for network security professionals to be able to proactively protect their assets. XDR provides visibility into the entire attack lifecycle by collecting and correlating multiple types of data that helps to identify the attacker, attack method, and the target (victim) as it is executing in the network.

This allows the security professional to have visibility into a specific attack at a very early stage in the process, which is extremely valuable in protecting their network from future attacks.

What threats does XDR protect enterprise companies from?

It’s an extremely powerful and flexible security tool that offers a comprehensive approach to network security, including prevention of the use of malware and its delivery, detection of unauthorized access, and protection against malware-related threats. It also includes features for intrusion prevention and prevention of attacks on systems.

Harnessing the power of artificial intelligence, XDR solutions often provide an early warning before a compromise occurs, which allows organizations to take immediate action and mitigate potential damage. They also can help to prevent further attacks by identifying both current and future malware campaigns.

Many organizations have implemented XDR solutions to protect their organizations, and in many cases, the solutions have helped to solve many previously unsolved problems associated with data visibility and security operations.

When XDR is deployed across your organization’s endpoints, you are able to use the data from multiple security products at the same time, to provide a full and accurate picture of your company’s security posture.

You can then use this information to leverage an “all-of-the-above” approach to your endpoint protection and response capabilities to detect, investigate, respond to and remediate threats in a more effective and timely manner.

Fileless Attacks

Another common threat are fileless attacks, which make it more difficult for traditional endpoint security tools to recognize and prevent these threats.

Often, XDR solutions allow users to analyze file activity, as well as interactions with the file system, in a secure environment and automate the process. This process greatly reduces human interaction, as well as the possibility of human error.

Memory-Only Attacks

Memory-only attacks are also becoming increasingly prevalent. These attacks can go undetected, leaving your organization’s network exposed, and they can also steal large amounts of corporate data.

The effectiveness of an XDR solution can be significantly increased by analyzing both memory and file content, which can be done automatically and in a controlled environment. By using XDR to perform rapid analysis of file content, data protection can be significantly improved and data integrity maintained.


Once a cyber attack has occurred, it can be overwhelming to determine the exact nature of the attack. XDR solutions often come into play as the first step in the incident response process, providing important contextual intelligence that can be used to determine the true nature of the attack and take the appropriate action.

By leveraging the use of these services, IT personnel are able to respond more quickly and accurately to the threat, significantly mitigating the amount of time and resources required to fix the problem.

Adam Hansen

Adam is a part time journalist, entrepreneur, investor and father.