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Compare Cortex XDR to CrowdStrike

Reality check: CrowdStrike’s Falcon Insight XDR cannot send thread-level process data based on events, which leads to a lower threat detection rate than Cortex XDR and foils their claim to be an enterprise-grade XDR.

Fact: Cortex XDR is the intelligent choice to stop fast-moving threats

You need exceptional, not average protection. CrowdStrike’s Falcon Insight XDR is a modest XDR solution that may miss advanced threats due to a lack of deep visibility capabilities and enterprise-ready features.

Cortex XDR delivers extended detection and response in a single application with the ability to manage a separate data lake for nonendpoint-related security telemetry and alerts.

It delivers:

See the proof: Cortex XDR recently outperformed CrowdStrike — and all other XDR vendors — in the 2023 MITRE Engenuity ATT&CK Evaluations (Turla).

Cortex XDR outperforms Microsoft Defender XDR in the 2023 MITRE ATT&CK Evaluations.

The consequences of no threat-level data processing

Why does CrowdStrike fall behind Cortex XDR in tests?

The protection you’ll get: Cortex XDR® delivers 20% more technique-level detections — the highest-quality detection possible — than CrowdStrike because it can continuously send unfiltered, thread-level data to the cloud. This makes it easier for Cortex XDR to detect advanced threats and apply user and entity behavior analytics (UEBA) on top of this data lake.

The security you’ll lack: CrowdStrike’s reliance on hash-based protections and IoCs focuses only on known attacks and after-the-fact detection so protection suffers. This limited protection is evidenced by their 87.4% analytic detection rate out of the box compared to Cortex XDR’s 100.0% in the 2023 MITRE ATT&CK® Evaluations.

Just the plain facts: Cortex XDR provides broader threat detection and investigation intelligence by:

  • Integrating with the WildFire® malware prevention service to detect unknown threats in a cloud analysis environment.
  • Leveraging behavioral analytics to profile behavior by tracking more than 1,000 behavior attributes.
  • Having behavior analytics, forensics and network visibility natively integrated into Cortex XDR.

Comprehensive automated investigations lead to faster incident response

Comprehensive automated investigations lead to faster incident response

What makes you more vulnerable to threats? Limits on the scope and the time of your defenses. Falcon Insight’s remote live terminal has limitations, as it exclusively supports commands defined by CrowdStrike. In contrast, Cortex XDR possesses a comprehensive live terminal that enables a broader range of actions on any given endpoint. Additionally, Falcon Insight can only automate a couple of incident remediation suggestions, while Cortex XDR automatically investigates suspicious causality process chains and incidents on all of your endpoints to display a list of suggested actions to remediate processes, files and registry keys on your selected endpoint.

To further decrease incident response time, Cortex XDR groups alerts into incidents, provides threat modeling, gathers full context and builds a timeline and attack sequence to understand the root cause and impact of an attack. Customer studies show that Cortex XDR can reduce security alerts by over 98%* and cut investigation times by 88%.** Cortex XDR enables a faster investigation and response by having:

*Based on an analysis of Cortex XDR customer environments.
** Palo Alto Networks SOC analysis showing reduced investigation time from 40 minutes to 5 minutes.

  • Incident management that correlates events and groups related alerts into incidents, which simplifies triage.
  • One-click remediation to allow for quick recovery from incidents.

Cortex XDR provides broad visibility across all data to enable efficient and effective investigation and response.

CrowdStrike’s Isolated Interface Hurts Its Enterprise Readiness

Beyond the endpoint, CrowdStrike’s data ingestion is limited to two-way integrations with its CrowdXDR Alliance partners. For example, CrowdStrike’s Falcon Insight XDR does not have a centralized action center where your SOC analyst can start all available actions, nor does it offer necessary unlimited data retention in the cloud. Furthermore, CrowdStrike does not support on-demand scans in Linux and macOS, which marginalizes organizations that rely on scans to find dormant malware and shrink their attack surface for Linux.

In contrast, Cortex XDR has vulnerability assessment and identity analytics capabilities that don’t require a partnership or specific connection module. This makes our third-party integration more open and flexible to the needs of growing organizations by:

  • Ingesting, mapping and using data from any number of sources that are delivered in standard formats like syslog or HTTP.
  • Having Cortex XDR use that data to generate XDR alerts within our incidents to quickly scale visibility across an organization.
  • Having Cortex XDR perform full disk scans in Linux and macOS.

Compare Cortex XDR to CrowdStrike

ProductsCrowdStrikeCortex XDR
The Best Protection? The Data Doesn’t Lie.

Is less than perfect good enough?

  • Continues to struggle with misses; delays with configuration changes needed to address tested threats.

100% threat prevention – leading the pack.

  • 100% threat prevention in MITRE ATT&CK Evaluations.

  • First-order identification is largely based on static hash analysis.

  • 100% Overall Active Prevention in AV-Comparative EPR and one of the highest Prevention/Response ratings.
  • Endpoint firewall and device control are not included; they are costly add-ons.
  • Includes purpose-built ransomware engine.
  • Loss of cloud lookup and managed services access means diminished protection.
  • Local analysis includes Behavioral Threat Protection against sophisticated and evasive attacks.
  • CrowdStrike requires both Falcon LogScale and Falcon EDR to deliver a fraction of what Cortex XDR can do.
  • Built-in WildFire sandbox-plus analysis identifies new threats and automatically distributes updates.
  • Built-in endpoint firewall and device control.
Clear, Superior Detection

Incomplete coverage across ecosystem

  • 20% of detections failed to provide enhanced analysis (tactic or technique) in the last MITRE ATT&CK Evaluations.

Analytics-based detection drives results.

  • 99.3% detection visibility in MITRE ATT&CK Evaluations.

  • Machine learning is narrowly focused on identity-related events and logs and only available for an added cost.

  • 100% of detections based on real-time analytics covering MITRE tactics and techniques.

  • Historical data is excluded from new detection rules scope.
  • Extensive data collection and AI-driven data analysis drive detection and visibility.
  • New detection rules analyze all new and historic data collected.
Faster, More Complete Investigation & Response

Manual activities add delays.

  • Response actions are done individually, wasting time and effort on repetitive tasks.

Automation speeds results.

  • Automatic correlation of events lets analysts see the entire incident.

  • Conditional one-click remediation. Manual actions are required per affected endpoint.

  • Intelligent alert grouping and incident scoring reduce investigation time by 88%.
  • No support for remediation scripting.

  • Machine isolation and restoration can be done individually or in bulk.
  • Possesses a limited live terminal that restricts Falcon Insight’s remote response capabilities

  • One-click remediation allows responders to quickly recover from incidents.
  • Python support for scripted responses at scale.
  • Custom prevention rules enable immediate gap closure.
Enterprise Fit. Customized. Always Evolving

One size does not fit all.

  • Data beyond CrowdStrike endpoints requires integration vendor’s participation in CrowdStrike Alliance.

Tailored to your organization.

  • Data can be ingested from virtually any syslog, event log, filebeat or source, enterprise-wide.
  • CrowdStrike does not support full disk scans in Linux and macOS.
  • Industry-leading Linux OS coverage.
  • Separate agents for EDR and identity analysis increase complexity and user experience.
  • XDR includes endpoint protection and is fully delivered through a single unified agent.
  • Rudimentary and minimal “customization” options.
  • Detection rules and dashboards are easily customizable to support each organization’s unique needs.

Ready to see Cortex in action?

Is Your Endpoint Security Solution Good Enough?

epr cyber risk quadrant report image

Cortex XDR consistently outperforms CrowdStrike in MITRE ATT&CK® Evaluations

In the MITRE ATT&CK Round 4 Evaluations, Cortex XDR identified over 97% of attack substeps with “technique level analytics detections” versus CrowdStrike’s 71%. Technique detections are the gold standard, providing all the detail and context needed to understand what was done, why, and how, empowering the security analyst to take action and remediate the threat. Cortex XDR gives your analysts superior intelligence to stop attackers at the earliest stage.

You should demand that your endpoint security provider be able to defend against all adversary tactics and techniques to avoid overloading your SOC team with alerts, incidents and possible breaches – all of which could have been prevented.

Need more proofpoints?

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