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Building Trust Through Managed Detection & Response: Protecting Companies and Their Customers

Brand impersonation attacks are increasingly common, and Managed Detection & Response (MDR) has emerged as a critical line of defense. In this post, we delve into the essence of MDR, the problem it solves, the technologies and strategies, and what to look for in a provider.

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What Is Managed Detection And Response? And What Problem Is It Solving?  

Managed Detection and Response (MDR) is a proactive approach to cybersecurity. It goes beyond traditional cybersecurity measures by not only detecting threats, but also responding to them … in real-time. MDR is usually offered as a comprehensive service that combines technology and human expertise to monitor, detect, and respond to threats to a company’s brand.

In the context of brand protection, MDR is a game-changer. Consider brand impersonation attacks. This is where impersonators pretend to be a reputable company to deceive customers — often by text messages (smishing), voice calls (vishing), and via good old phishing emails as well. Each of these are designed to trick customers into revealing sensitive information by relying on the trust that a brand — your brand — has spent millions earning.

Thankfully, MDR has become an essential tool for protecting brand reputation and maintaining customer trust. Take, for example, a scenario where a scammer impersonates a well-known bank. Perhaps they make convincing robocalls to customers, claiming there's an issue with their account and they need to verify their details. Unaware customers might provide their account information, leading to financial loss and a damaged trust in the bank.

MDR services can slow or stop these attacks. Managed Detection and Response services use advanced technologies like patented audio fingerprinting, real-time real-user audio collection, and content-based analytics to detect threats in real-time … and to then immediately respond. In our example, the bank could almost immediately identify the fraudulent communications, then send the appropriate alerts to the teams that need to know, mitigating the damage — all while collecting information that could help future prosecution of the criminals.

Brands have spent millions developing trust. Managed Detection and Response is a cost-effective way to minimize the damages from phishing, vishing, and smishing attacks.

What Are Some Technologies & Strategies Used In MDR (Managed Detection And Response)?

MDR employs a variety of technologies and strategies to effectively combat brand impersonation attacks. These include the STIR/SHAKEN protocols, which ensure the authenticity of call origins, as well as using advanced call and content analysis to identify potential threats. Machine learning and AI algorithms are often used to learn from and adapt to evolving threats, while audio analytics can play a critical role in identifying fraudulent calls.

STIR/SHAKEN protocols, for example, are a set of technical standards developed to combat caller ID spoofing. Since this is a common tactic used in brand impersonation attacks, brands can minimize fraud by verifying the authenticity of call origins. These protocols — should you be using them properly — can add an extra layer of security to voice communications.

Call and content analysis, on the other hand, involves examining the details of a call or message from a wide variety of call sources. This data includes not just the contents of the voicemail, but also the date, time, location, and length of the call. This data, in aggregate, is used to help identify patterns and anomalies that may indicate fraudulent activity. Getting this data requires a massive “sensor network,” which most brands don’t have access to. However, the right partner organizations have access to millions or even billions of points of call data.

Machine learning and AI algorithms are then used to analyze this data and learn from it, allowing the system to adapt to new threats as they evolve. For example, if a new type of brand impersonation attack emerges, the system can often learn to recognize it and respond accordingly.

Audio analytics is another key MDR strategy used hand-in-hand with AI and ML. This involves analyzing the audio content of voice messages to identify potential threats. For example, if a call contains certain phrases commonly used in vishing attacks, the system can flag it as potentially fraudulent. Then the data points above, processes through AI/ML technologies, can “fingerprint” these types of calls, making them easy for the system to recognize in other situations.

7 Things To Look For In The Best Managed Detection And Response Providers

When choosing an MDR provider, what factors should a brand consider? There are at least 7 areas to look at:

  1. Scope of Coverage: The MDR provider should offer a comprehensive range of services that protect a brand against various threats. This means not only detecting and responding to brand impersonation attacks via SMS, for example, but also via phishing and vishing attacks.
  2. Response Time: The best MDR providers should offer almost instant automated responses to threats, minimizing potential damage. This involves continuously monitoring for threats and taking immediate action when they are detected, such as working to block fraudulent communications and/or alerting the affected parties.
  3. Technology: The best providers will utilize the latest technologies, including AI and machine learning. With the amount of data points, it would be incredibly difficult to find the fraudulent calls without using AI algorithms to analyze call data and identify patterns.
  4. Expertise: Clearly, any trustworthy MDR provider should have a focused, experienced team of experts with deep knowledge of cybersecurity and brand protection. These experts should offer decades of experience, and should be able to provide guidance and support, helping you understand the threats you face and the best ways to protect against them.
  5. Customization: Every brand’s situation is different. An excellent provider will offer customizable solutions that cater to your specific needs.
  6. Customer Support: This is a dynamic business, and as things change, you should be able to reach your MDR provider to address any issues with knowledge, reliable customer support.
  7. Track Record: A worthy MDR provider clearly must have a history of successfully protecting brands from impersonation attacks. They should be able to provide case studies or testimonials from satisfied customers, demonstrating their effectiveness in combating brand impersonation attacks.

When looking at MDR providers, it's essential to understand how they approach the challenge of brand protection.

Consider industry-leader YouMailPS. They employ a multi-faceted approach to Managed Detection and Response, with suite of services — including Brand Impersonation Defender and Brand Monitor — that provide comprehensive protection against brand impersonation attacks. They leverage data from an enormous Sensor Network (billions of call data points) and use advanced technologies like AI, ML, audio analytics, and patented fingerprinting to detect and respond to threats in real-time. In addition, they’re expertise is clear, as they are often the team helping your phone company (aka Communication Service Providers / CSP) to mitigate unwanted robocalls and comply with FCC requirements. This holistic approach to MDR, combining technology, data, and expertise, exemplifies the kind of comprehensive, proactive strategy that brands should consider in an MDR provider.

MDR is a crucial tool in the fight against brand impersonation attacks. By leveraging advanced technologies and strategies, MDR providers can effectively protect brands and maintain customer trust. When choosing an MDR provider, look for comprehensive coverage, real-time response, advanced technology, expertise, customization, reliable customer support, and a proven track record.

Don't let your brand fall victim to impersonation attacks. Learn more about how YouMailPS's Managed Detection & Response services can protect your brand. Schedule a private briefing today.

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