Gartner Research

Every Organization Should Assess the Value of an Incident Response Retainer

Published: 25 February 2019

ID: G00376021

Analyst(s): Brian Reed , Sam Olyaei


Access and availability to knowledgeable incident responders is critical to reducing the incident window and impact of security incidents. Security and risk management leaders should understand the value of IR retainers to augment security capabilities and improve detection and response techniques.

Table Of Contents
  • Key Challenges



  • Search for Providers That Allow the Greatest Amount of Flexibility in Moving Between Reactive and Proactive Services
  • Evaluate If Upfront Money Spent on an IR Retainer Would Be Better Invested in Other Detect and Respond Capabilities
  • Evaluate the Limitations of Zero-Dollar IRRs and IRRs Bundled With a Cyberinsurance Policy
    • A Zero-Dollar IR Retainer Is Not Truly “Free” and Might Come With Significant Limitations
    • There Are Implications to Having Both an IR Retainer and Cyberinsurance Policy in Place
  • Prerequisites Before Signing an Incident Response Retainer

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