Managed Detection and Response (MDR) and Extended Detection and Response (XDR) are designed to help security teams detect and respond to cybersecurity threats. However, these two methods approach threats in different ways.

In the latest video for our Whiteboard Series, we discuss MDR and XDR, their differences, and why they should matter to you.

MDR Defined and Its Purpose

MDR, or Managed Detection and Response, is a function or a service that cannot be defined by a single technology. Rather, it is defined by what the intended outcome is supposed to be by focusing on what threats you want to detect and how to best respond to them. It is an external service that focuses on data collection and the ability to investigate and respond.

First, you want to have the ability to analyze what is happening in your environment, followed by a response plan. Typically, you’re looking to block unfamiliar IP addresses on your firewall, block inbound and outbound URLs in your spam or content filter, or disable a compromised account – to name a few examples.

Afterward, you would begin your incident response plan to understand if further action is required, what those actions are, and the procedures for taking those actions.

XDR Defined and Its Purpose:

XDR, also known as Extended Detection and Response, is an architectural approach. Essentially, XDR brings MDR to a new level.

XDR is about enhancing your threat detection, reducing your time to respond, and making your response actions more effective. Ultimately, it is about establishing a stronger security program with automated data enrichment.

Automated data enrichment provides additional context around all the data you’re collecting, enabling your security team to better understand and use it.

One of the most important aspects of XDR is the ability to view what is not changing within your environment and understand how it applies to things that are changing constantly.


Both MDR and XDR assist security teams around increasing workloads. MDR essentially provides an external Security Operations Center (SOC) that performs a majority of duties necessary to protect your organization.

XDR, on the other hand, enhances your threat detection, reduces your time to respond, and makes your response actions more effective. Together, this is an efficient way to manage threats and respond appropriately.

How Sedara Can Help You:

Sedara was founded on the principle that cybersecurity monitoring must have detection capabilities and response capabilities built into it. We’ve been doing MDR and XDR for a decade now.

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