Benefits of a Managed SOC and XDR for the Public Sector

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cyber security

The Great Recession, austerity measures, and increasing demands on public resources – it’s fair to say, the public sector has faced many challenges in recent years and continues to do so. 

Not least of these challenges, is cyber security. Indeed, as cyber-attacks across all industries continue to rise – and as we have seen in recent years – attackers do not discriminate. Sadly, in some instances, the public sector is more likely to be targeted by cyber-criminals as many of its departments are seen as so-called ‘soft targets’ due to generally being easily accessible to the public.

Additionally, cyber-criminals are aware of just how much data public sector organisations hold and how much there is to lose if this is compromised. It’s for this reason that ransomware demands are so prevalent across this sector, adding to financial pressures felt across the board. 

Of course, tightening belts have meant that the public sector’s IT services can no longer simply enable organisational performance and operations, but, instead, must innovate and drive true transformation and value.  

In the case of a cyber security service, the provision is not there to simply ‘enable’ business-as-usual practices. It is there to proactively defend against them, protecting the expanding volumes of data and delivering against the end-users experience expectations. 

Can a managed SOC help? 

Starting with the basics, a Security Operations Centre (SOC) refers to a team of IT security specialists that work to detect and isolate cyber-attacks before they become major incidents in real-time. The SOC team manages all daily operational activities connected with an organisation’s network and infrastructure security. 

For organisations without the time and resources to employ, train, and maintain an in-house SOC, the service can be outsourced as a ‘managed SOC service’. In this case, the managed SOC team would work as an extension of their customer’s IT department, helping to identify, detect, and address cyber threats. The SOC service would also enable use of the latest tools, software, training, and skills with no upfront investment required from the organisation in question.

Perhaps it goes without saying how access to all these skillsets, experience and tools can be very beneficial and cost-effective for public sector organisations. After all, a managed SOC service provides a level of visibility and security that’s difficult to maintain in-house, even if additional funds are available.

In this sense, then, employing a managed SOC team can offer public sector organisations peace of mind, as well as several other benefits which are well worth considering. 

How can public sector organisations benefit from a managed SOC? 


Always a big consideration for the public sector, outsourcing SOC services is very cost-effective compared to the investments in tooling and skillset required to operate the same service in-house. Organisations benefit from access to sophisticated tools they may not otherwise be able to afford or maintain and are not burdened with the constant training and up-skilling the cyber security industry requires. 

Independence from IT

Remember, cyber security isn’t solely ‘the job of the IT team’; lumbering them with SOC responsibilities on top of their other important duties can lead to a lack of focus and diminished transparency. A managed SOC solution is designed to detect threats, analyse alerts, and handle advanced threats that an in-house IT team cannot (or shouldn’t) manage on its own. 

Advanced skillsets

The ability to contextualise and analyse alerts is an essential skill of cyber security professionals alone, and these are difficult skills to recruit, keep up-to-date, and retain internally. Managed SOC services provide threat intelligence, threat hunting, and advanced analytics alongside human analysts. Together, these things offer a holistic view of the organisation’s infrastructure that reduces the level of potential harm and can quickly isolate compromised endpoints in the event of a breach.  

Cross-pollination of intelligence

A SOC provided by a Managed Security Services Provider (MSSP) has the added benefit of working across multiple industries and sectors. This means it can offer organisations extensive knowledge from different fields and leverage cyber security intelligence across a varied customer base. 


Managed SOC services can help public sector organisations meet compliance requirements by providing a comprehensive security solution that includes regular reporting and auditing. 

Can managed XDR help? 

Extended detection and response (XDR) could indeed be a very useful and powerful cyber security tool for the public sector. Simply because it offers a much more holistic approach to security than previous generation tools. 

Using an XDR approach public sector organisations would be able to mitigate and monitor threats across a much wider attack surface. XDR offers, as Gartner puts it, a “unified security incident detection and response platform that automatically collects and correlates data from multiple proprietary security components.” 

XDR works by connecting and conglomerating data from multiple security solutions, allowing them to work together to improve threat visibility and reduce the length of time required to identify and respond to an attack (what we call ‘dwell time’).  

It’s also ideal for cloud-based environments since XDR typically involves the use of advanced analytics and machine learning algorithms to analyse security event data from multiple sources in real-time (this can include log data from endpoints, network traffic, and cloud services, as well as leveraging threat intelligence feeds and other contextual data). 

Put simply, utilising a managed XDR service could offer the public sector an immensley powerful and proactive approach to cyber security, along with faster investigation, threat hunting, and response – yet would require no upfront investment in recruitment, training, or tools on their part (since the service provider would already have these in place).  

How can managed XDR benefit the public sector? 

An extended detection and response solution is so more than a cyber security ‘upgrade’ for organisations – rather it changes the way cyber security is approached altogether – great news for public sector organisations looking to futureproof their cyber security. 

As well as offering some cross-over benefits with a managed SOC service (think ROI, compliance matters, and access to advanced skillsets), public sector organisations choosing to work with an MSP on an XDR service will usually benefit from:   


XDR provides organisations the ability to scale their security infrastructure as their needs change. As the solutions leveraged within the service are cloud based and bespoke rulesets used, the service can be tailored to suit. This helps organisations to meet their evolving threat landscape without incurring significant capital expenditures. 

Enhanced threat visibility

XDR delivers granular visibility by working across multiple layers, collecting and correlating data from an array of sources such as email, endpoints, users, cloud workloads and networks. 

Improved efficiency

With advanced analytics and correlation content prebuilt in the tool, on top of threat focused TTP (tactic, technique and procedure) bespoke rulesets, XDR automatically detects and contains advanced threats. This means that security teams can react with greater agility, ensuring a more coherent response to attacks. 

Boosted productivity

XDR unites multiple tools under one centralised solution, meaning they are much easier to handle, oversee, and manage. Conglomerating data all in one place like this saves time and allows for tools to act in unison, making the whole workflow so much smoother. 

Continuous improvement

XDR solutions use machine learning to continuously learn and improve over time. In this way, the protection organisations receive from their XDR solution can only improve as time goes by.

Final word 

To wrap up our thoughts on how the public sector could benefit from enhanced, professional security services such as managed SOC and managed XDR, it’s important to draw attention to one final thing: the flexibility gained from working with a managed service provider. 

As the public sector continues to face tumultuous times and unprecedented challenges – and as the threat landscape continues to evolve – a customised service with the ability to bend and flex with the organisation, as well as prepare in-advance for threats on the horizon, will be indispensable.  


To find out more about how we can help your organisation mitigate cyber threats and maintain a high level of security using managed SOC and XDR, please get in touch using the green button on this page. 

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