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What is Network Detection & Response (NDR)?

As enterprises expand their IT infrastructure to enable remote workforces, leverage the cloud, and facilitate new innovation, the need for more robust cybersecurity approaches is imperative. In response to these challenges, a growing number of enterprises are relying on network detection and response (NDR) solutions to fill gaps left with existing security toolsets.

NDR is a new form of cybersecurity solution designed to protect the complex requirements of on-premises, public and private clouds, and hybrid environments as efficiently as possible. When NDR is combined with other security solutions, such as log analysis tools (SIEM) and endpoint detection and response (EDR), blind spots within the network can be filled and a more robust cybersecurity strategy can be implemented. NDR solutions provide more complete data than EDR tools, which only focus on endpoints. They also provide more detailed data than SIEMs, which rely on log data that can be corrupted by attackers and isn’t as granular as the network packet data that NDR tools like NETSOUT’s Omnis Cyber Intelligence use.

NDR solutions heighten security capabilities by automating responses to threats, enabling security and network operations teams to collaborate more effectively, leading to better detection and mitigation. NDR solutions also reduce the burden on security resources, freeing up personnel to focus on other important tasks.

When powered by network packet data, NDR solutions can provide real-time attack surface monitoring, early warning capabilities, contact tracing to locate attackers within the network, and back-in-time analysis. With Omnis Cyber Intelligence, NETSCOUT provides a cloud-native NDR solution that helps security teams effectively respond to increased complexity, tool sprawl, false positives, and organizational silos.

What is the difference between EDR and NDR?

EDR is designed to monitor and mitigate endpoint attacks. These attacks are typically focused on endpoints in a network like computers and servers. NDR monitors network traffic in its entirety to gain visibility into potential cyberthreats, delivering real-time visibility across the broader network. These tools work well as complements to each other, though many enterprises aren’t deploying NDR as effectively as they could be.

How does Network Detection and Response work?

Network Detection and response (NDR) is a security tool that monitors an enterprise’s network traffic to gain visibility into potential cyberthreats. NDR relies on advanced capabilities, such as behavioral analytics, machine learning, and artificial intelligence to uncover threats and suspect activities. Once detected, the solution takes action against threats using its own capabilities, or through coordinated actions in conjunction with other cybersecurity tools.

NDR solutions work by modeling the tactics, techniques and methodologies found in the MITRE ATT&CK framework. NDR can cut the time spent conducting investigations by leveraging high-fidelity data and comparing it to a timeline of events to reveal attack behaviors. This data can also be shared with security information event management (SIEM) solutions to create broader security assessments.

NDR solutions are highly effective at detecting threats and then taking action against these threats in real-time through its own capabilities. NDR is also effective when used in support of other cybersecurity tools.

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Case Study for NDR

NETSCOUT Omnis Cyber Intelligence bridges both network and security perspectives for improved Network Operations and Security Operations for a large healthcare/hospital network. 

Read the Case Study: Omnis Cyber Intelligence Brings Value of Packet Data for Faster Incident Response

What is XDR (Extended Detection and Response)?

Extended Detection and Response (XDR) is a method of detecting and responding to threats, eliminating the challenges of traditional security silos, thus enabling the delivery of more effective protection against cyberattacks and unapproved access.

Forrester Research defines XDR as: “The evolution of EDR, which optimizes threat detection, investigation, response, and hunting in real time. XDR unifies security-relevant endpoint detections with telemetry from security and business tools such as network analysis and visibility (NAV), email security, identity and access management, cloud security, and more. It is a cloud-native platform built on big data infrastructure to provide security teams with flexibility, scalability, and opportunities for automation.”

What is network traffic analysis (NTA)?

Network traffic analysis (NTA) is the act of monitoring network availability. NTA is able to identify anomalous activities that may indicate operational or security issues. Some of the operational issues NTA can reveal by gathering a real-time and historical record, may include network slowdowns. NTA can also detect issues, such as Malware (including ransomware incursions), and the active use of susceptible protocols and ciphers. By improving internal visibility, NTA is able to curtail blind spots, ending these vulnerabilities.

Omnis Cyber Intelligence Risk Visualization
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How do I integrate Network Detection and Response?

NDR solutions are often used in conjunction with other security solutions as part of a more comprehensive approach. 

NDR solutions can be integrated with existing systems. These solutions are designed to create little friction with SOCs, yet offer effective network threat detection. Relying on sensors implemented off a SPAN or TAP port, NDRs can passively monitor network traffic.

Integration with SIEM
SOCs can seamlessly integrate NDR solutions with SIEMs, enabling full visibility within existing workflows, while still enabling a shift into the NDR as required for deeper analysis.

Integration with SOAR
Many NDR integrations occur within large enterprises with mature SOCs who prefer to leverage their own playbooks and workflows for a response. Therefore, many NDR vendors provide integration with security orchestration automation and response (SOAR) tools from vendors such as Splunk, Palo Alto, and Swimlane. 

Integration with workloads in public or private clouds
With many enterprises moving data and workloads to the cloud, integrating NDR capabilities across cloud and hybrid-cloud environments makes a lot of sense. Such integration enables the monitoring of network traffic through the different domains, providing comprehensive coverage and protection.

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