Not Just Another 100% Score: MITRE ENGENUITY ATT&CK

By: Trend Micro
June 18, 2024
Read time: 4 min (1135 words)

The latest MITRE Engenuity ATT&CK Evaluations pitted leading managed detection and response (MDR) services against threats modeled on the menuPass and BlackCat/AlphV adversary groups. Trend Micro achieved 100% detection across all 15 major attack steps with an 86% actionable rate for those steps— balancing detections and business priorities including operational continuity and minimized disruption.

Trend took part in the MITRE Engenuity ATT&CK Evaluations for managed detection and response (MDR) services—building on a history of strong performance in other MITRE Engenuity tests. Key to that ongoing success is our platform approach, which provides high-fidelity detection of early- and mid-chain tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs) enabling quick and decisive counteractions before exfiltration or encryption can occur. Of course, we know real-world outcomes matter more than lab results. That’s why we’re proud to support thousands of customers worldwide with MDR that brings the most native extended detection and response (XDR) telemetry, leading threat intelligence from Trend™ Research and our Trend Micro™ Zero-Day Initiative™ (ZDI) under a single service to bridge real-time threat protection and cyber risk management. 

The evaluation focused on our Trend Service One™ offering, powered by Trend Vision One, which included XDR, endpoint and network security capabilities. The results proved Trend Micro MDR is a great alternative to managed services that rely on open XDR platforms or managed SIEM platforms.

Our detection of adversarial activity early in the attack chain combined with our platform’s deeply integrated native response capabilities enables rapid mean-time-to-detect (MTTD) and mean-time-to-respond (MTTR). At the same time, comprehensive visibility and protection gives security teams greater confidence.


Full detection across all major steps

This most recent MITRE Engenuity ATT&CK Evaluations for Managed Services featured attacks modeled on the real-world adversaries menuPass and BlackCat/AlphV. These took the form of advanced persistent threats (APTs) designed to dwell in the network post-breach and execute harmful activity over time.

Trend MDR achieved full detection coverage, reflecting and reinforcing our achievements in cybersecurity:

  • 100% across all  major attack steps
  • 100% for enriched detail on TTPs
  • 86% actionable rate for major steps

How Trend MDR delivers

To put its MDR evaluation in context, MITRE Engenuity conducted a survey prior to testing, gaining insights into market perceptions and expectations of managed cybersecurity services. More than half (58%) of respondents said they rely on managed services either to complement their in-house SOC or as their main line of defense. For companies with fewer than 5,000 employees, that tally increased to 68%.

Our MDR service at Trend helps meet those needs by combining AI techniques with human threat expertise and analysis. We correlate data and detect threats that might otherwise slip by as lower severity alerts. Our experts prioritize threats by severity, determine the root cause of attacks, and develop detailed response plans.

XDR is a key technology to achieve these security outcomes, extending visibility beyond endpoints to other parts of the environment where threats can otherwise go undetected: servers, email, identities, mobile devices, cloud workloads, networks, and operational technologies (OT). 

Integrated with native XDR insights is deep, global threat intelligence. Native telemetry enables high-fidelity detections, strong correlations and rich context; global threat intelligence brings highly relevant context to detect threats faster and more precisely. Combined with a broad third-party integration ecosystem and response automation across vectors, Trend Vision One introduces a full-spectrum SOC platform for security teams to speed up investigations and frees up time to focus on high-value, proactive security work including threat hunting and detection engineering. In some cases, smaller teams rely on our MDR service completely for their security operations.

With Trend Vision One, teams have access to a continuously updated and growing library of detection models—with the ability to build custom detection models to fit their unique threat models.

Proven strength in delivering higher-confidence alerts

Security and security operations center (SOC) teams are inundated with detection alerts and noise. Our visibility and analytics performance achieves a finely tuned balance between providing early alerts of critical adversarial tactics and techniques and managing alert fatigue to improve the analyst experience. Our MDR operations team takes advantage of the platform advantage and knows only to alert customers when critical.

In each simulation during the MITRE Engenuity ATT&CK Evaluations, there was no scenario where menuPass and BlackCat/AlphV attack attempts successfully breached the environment without being detected or disrupted.

It’s important to note that MITRE Engenuity doesn’t rank products or solutions. It provides objective measures but no scores. Instead, since every service and solution functions differently, the evaluation reveals areas of strength and opportunities for improvement within each offering. 

About the attacks

The menuPass threat group has been active since at least 2006. Some of its members have been associated with the Tianjin State Security Bureau of the Chinese Ministry of State Security and with the Huaying Haitai Science and Technology Development Company. It has targeted healthcare, defense, aerospace, finance, maritime, biotechnology, energy, and government targets—and in 2016–17 went after managed IT service providers. BlackCat is Rust-based ransomware offered as a service and first observed in November 2021. It has been used to target organizations across Africa, the Americas, Asia, Australia, and Europe in a range of sectors. 

Putting our service to the test

In cybersecurity, actions speak louder than words. Our significant investment in research and development extend to our MDR service offering to support thousands of enterprises around the world.

We’re dedicated to continuous iteration and improvement to equip security teams with cutting-edge solutions to keep their organizations safe. As we evolve our solutions, MITRE Engenuity continues to evolve its evaluation approach as well. The category of “actionability” was new in this evaluation, determining if each alert provided enough context for the security analyst to act on. The actionability testing category is an area we’re investing in heavily from a process and technology standpoint to ensure contextual awareness, prioritization, and intelligent guidance are included while maintaining manageable communication cadences and minimizing false positive alerts.

Overall, areas for improvement surfaced through the test scenarios have been resourced with dedicated engineering and development efforts to match the high standard we hold ourselves to-and that our users expect. We are pleased to see our MDR service demonstrated a strong balance of detection capabilities across the entire attack chain, both within the service itself and embedded in the underlying Trend Vision One platform.

We invite all our MDR customers to take a look at the MITRE Engenuity ATT&CK Evaluations for Managed Services to better understand the strength of their defensive posture, and to come to us with any questions or thoughts.

Next steps

For more on Trend MDR, XDR, and other related topics, check out these additional resources:

Forward vision

At Trend, we are dedicated to continuous iteration and improvement to equip security teams with cutting-edge solutions to keep their organizations safe. These relevant areas of improvement surfaced through the scenarios have been resourced with dedicated engineering and development efforts to match the high standard we hold ourselves to and which our users expect.

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