An organization’s Security Operations Center (SOC) monitors and improves its security posture while preventing, detecting, analyzing, and responding to cybersecurity incidents through the use of people, processes, and technology.
A SOC collects data from across a company’s IT infrastructure, including devices, networks, appliances, and data stores, wherever they reside, acting as the center of control. As advanced threats proliferate, context must be collected from a variety of sources to ensure security.
As a result, the SOC functions as the correlation point for each event logged within the monitored organization. Depending on the type of event, the SOC must decide how it will respond.
Security Operations Center (SOCs), sometimes referred to as information Security Operations Center or ISOCs, are teams of IT security professionals who monitor the entire IT infrastructure of an organization 24/7, in order to detect cybersecurity events in real time and respond to them quickly and efficiently.
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SOC frameworks should include all of the core capabilities that make up an organization’s Security Operations Center, including:
A SOC monitors the organization’s security around the clock for potential threats. Hence, for this monitoring, analysts need tools that automatically collect and aggregate data from multiple sources, including Security Information and Event Monitoring (SIEM) solutions and Extended Detection and Response (XDR).
Analysts use security data to detect credible threats to the organization by parsing through a variety of alerts, logs, and other data. Hence, it is possible to eliminate false positives and attract attention to actual threats with the help of artificial intelligence and machine learning.
SOCs are responsible for taking action to address threats to the organization when they identify them. Therefore, the use of Security Orchestration, Automation, and Response (SOAR) solutions can help remediate security incidents automatically and provide built-in support for incident remediation.
Compliance with regulatory requirements and documentation of security incidents require logs and records. In the meantime, regulatory compliance and internal reporting may be possible using Infratech’s SOC solutions and security platforms, which include built-in logging capabilities.
It is not possible to identify and manage all threats through the detection and response processes, causing unauthorized intrusions into an organization’s systems. SOC analysts conduct threat hunting to identify unknown threats, which requires tools that collect and analyze security data from multiple sources.
A SOC’s responsibilities are wide-ranging. Providing SOCs with the tools to perform their roles and integrating these solutions into an integrated security architecture is one of the benefits of a SOC framework.
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The Security Operations Center teams and, in many cases, security operations center (SOCs) are responsible for monitoring, detecting, investigating, and responding to cyber threats around the clock.
Security Operations Center teams monitor and protect several assets, including intellectual property, personnel data, and business systems.
A Security Operations Center team serves as a central point of collaboration in monitoring, assessing, and defending against cyberattacks by implementing the organization’s overall cybersecurity framework.
There has been widespread use of hub-and-spoke architectures for SOCs, where spokes can incorporate a variety of systems, such as Vulnerability Assessment Solutions, Governance, Risk and Compliance (GRC) Systems, Application and Database Scanners, Intrusion Prevention Systems (IPS), User and Entity Behavior Analytics (UEBA), Endpoint Detection and Remediation (EDR), and Threat Intelligence Platforms (TIP).
SOC managers usually manage incident responders and SOC analysts (levels 1, 2, and 3). Threat hunters and incident response managers may also be part of the SOC.
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SOCs can take several forms. Hence an organization’s security maturity, size, and other factors can all influence the right SOC.
Some large enterprises maintain their Security Operations Center. SOCs provide a great deal of control over how data is managed and how cybersecurity is controlled for organizations with adequate resources.
A well-functioning in-house Security Operations Center, however, can be challenging and expensive to maintain. Keeping track of security and incident response around the clock is essential because cyberattacks can occur at any time.
In an era of cyber skills shortage, retaining and attracting the security expertise needed for 24-hour protection can be challenging.
There are a variety of managed SOC options available for organizations with limited resources, scale, or desire to maintain their Security Operations Center (SOC).
They can hire third parties to monitor and respond to security threats 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. When needed, managed security providers provide access to specialized security expertise.
Managed security offerings decrease an organization’s control over its SOC, which is its main disadvantage. A managed security provider may not be able to accommodate a customer’s special requests due to their tools, policies, and procedures.
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What made SOC perfect for your organizational security. Below given are a few component of SOC that you should know:
SOCs oversee two types of assets, namely the devices, processes, and applications associated with the various assets they are responsible for safeguarding, and the defensive tools they employ to ensure those assets are protected.
Devices and data that the Security Operation Center cannot see cannot be safeguarded. In a network security posture without visibility and control, blind spots can be found and exploited from device to cloud.
Consequently, it is the SOC’s responsibility to gain a comprehensive understanding of the business’ cyber threat landscape, including both on-premises assets that are connected to third parties and traffic that originates from them.
A member of the SOC should also have a thorough understanding of the SOC’s cybersecurity tools and workflows. By doing so, the SOC can run more efficiently and with more agility
It is impossible to prevent problems from occurring in the first place, no matter how well-equipped and agile the response process is. The SOC implements two kinds of preventative measures to help keep attackers at bay.
Stay current with the latest security innovations, cybercrime trends, and emerging threats. Furthermore, a disaster recovery plan that can serve as ready guidance in the event of a worst-case scenario can be developed based on the results of this research.
It involves updating firewall policies, patching vulnerabilities, and blacklisting, whitelisting, and securing applications in order to make successful attacks more difficult.
To detect abnormalities or suspicious activity on the network, the SOC uses tools that scan it 24/7. The SOC is notified immediately of emerging threats when the network is monitored around the clock, giving them the best chance to prevent or mitigate harm.
Among the monitoring tools available are SIEMs, EDRs, and even better SOARs and XDRs, the most advanced of which can be taught by behavioral analysis of the difference between normal daily operations and actual threats. This minimizes the amount of triage and analysis that must be performed by humans.
SOC staff must carefully examine these alerts, discard any false positives, and determine the severity of any actual threats and what they might target when monitoring tools issue alerts. Consequently, they can handle the most urgent threats first, triaging emerging threats appropriately.
Most people envision the SOC as performing these actions. A SOC’s first response is to shut down or isolate endpoints, terminate harmful processes (or prevent them from executing), and delete files. Hence, business continuity should be spared as much as possible while responding to the extent necessary.
SOCs are responsible for restoring systems following an incident and recovering any lost or compromised data. Wiping endpoints and restarting them, reconfiguring systems, and deploying viable backups are all ways to circumvent ransomware attacks. This step will restore the network to its pre-attack state once it is successful.
All network activity and communications for the entire organization must be collected, maintained, and regularly reviewed by the SOC. Using this data, we can determine the normal activity of a network, identify threats, and investigate incidents.
Applications, firewalls, operating systems, and endpoints generate internal logs that are often aggregated and correlated by SIEMs.
SOCs are responsible for uncovering when, how, and why incidents occur. To prevent similar problems from occurring in the future, the SOC uses log data and other information during this investigation.
Keeping up with cybercriminals requires continual improvements in the SOC’s tools and tactics. Therefore, red teams and purple teams are examples of hands-on practices for refining the plans outlined in the Security Road Map.
Some SOC processes fall under compliance requirements, but most are governed by established best practices. SOCs are normally responsible for ensuring compliance with regulatory rules issued by organizations, industries, or governing bodies.
The NCA, SAMA, and PCI DSS are examples of such regulations. This way, the organization can protect its reputation and avoid legal challenges in the event of a violation of these regulations.
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Monitoring and alerting are the primary functions of the Security Operations Center (SOC). Data collection and analysis are essential to the organization’s security, as well as identifying suspicious activities and enhancing the organization’s security.
Tools like threat analysis tools compile all the threat data collected by firewalls, intrusion detection systems, intrusion prevention systems, and security information and event management systems (SIEMs). Every time there’s a discrepancy, abnormal trend, or other sign of compromise, SOC gets an alert.
There are several best practices that a SOC should follow, whether it is internal or external.
Organizations often perceive security as conflicting with other aspects of their operations. Security personnel can violate or ignore security policies because of this adversarial relationship between them and other business units.
In addition, the SOC may face difficulties in acquiring funding, resources, and personnel due to a lack of understanding of the importance of security.
Security Operation Center strategies must be aligned with business objectives to ensure that they are considered an asset and an essential part of the organization’s success. SOCs conduct risk assessments to identify and assess corporate assets for potential cyberattack risks and impacts.
Using metrics and KPIs, the team can demonstrate how the SOC supports the business as a whole. Last but not least, the team can determine methods and procedures for achieving these goals.
Managing security threats and systems is a constant challenge for SOC personnel. SOCs can benefit substantially from acquiring and deploying the latest tools.
However, deploying, configuring, and monitoring new tools requires resources that could be used to identify and manage other threats. Security Operation Center should carefully consider the technology tools stack they use to ensure that the benefits outweigh the costs.
The best way to simplify and streamline security monitoring and management is to use integrated security platforms whenever possible.
The prevention and mitigation of security incidents require rapid threat detection and response. Having access to an organization’s environment for a long period greatly increases the likelihood of an attacker stealing sensitive data, planting malware, or harming the organization in other ways.
SOCs must be able to quickly identify and respond to threats using threat intelligence and machine learning (ML).
A machine learning algorithm can identify likely threats to an organization by analyzing large volumes of security data. It is possible to provide threat data to a human analyst for further action or to automatically trigger remediation actions.
There is a large, diverse, and expanding corporate network in today’s world. Mobile devices, cloud-based systems, and IoT devices are now part of corporate IT environments.
Security Operations Center personnel need to have end-to-end visibility across the network in order to manage the risk of the organization.
By integrating security displays and dashboards, security analysts will be able to avoid overlooking or missing potential threats due to the need to switch between multiple displays and dashboards.
There is no set time for cyberattacks. Attacks may intentionally be timed for the evenings or weekends when an organization may be less prepared to respond, even if threat actors are operating within an organization’s time zone. Any response delay allows attackers to accomplish their attack objectives unnoticed.
As a result, corporate SOCs should be able to monitor corporate networks around the clock. In order to reduce the potential cost and impact of attacks, organizations need to monitor continuously for threats in order to detect them and respond to them as rapidly as possible.
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Having a Security Operation Center is not easy and requires a lot of resources. Below given are the requirements of modern SOC you should know:
Expert staff with a thorough understanding of security alerts and scenarios is essential. When it comes to solving security problems, you need people who can think outside the box and adapt to changing threats.
It is important to have people who are able to learn on the fly when dealing with attacks of all types and forms. If you require security clearances for your techs, you will have to screen them extremely carefully.
An industry-wide set of security requirements governs security. Having a successful SOC requires alignment with all types of security requirements such as SACS, NCA, SAMA, PCI, and others. All of these requirements require a tremendous amount of security controls.
Additionally, you should be familiar with how to remediate the controls as well as what they are. Security issues should be remedied with the same care as they are detected.
The aim is to create a toolbox that can be used for performing security audits, penetration tests, and port scans. In addition to Intrusion Prevention, Intrusion Detection, and analyses, many commercial systems can provide these services.
There is no substitute for a good ticketing system, a document management system, and an inventory management system. By connecting to security feeds and websites that update you on current events, you can also stay on top of the latest security trends.
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Keeping up with attackers is a constant challenge for SOC teams. Increasingly, this has become a challenge. Every SOC team faces the following three challenges:
A Dimensional Research survey found that 53% of SOCs face difficulty hiring qualified staff. Therefore, many SOC teams lack sufficient personnel and training to identify threats and respond to them effectively.
To fill the skills gap and better defend companies around the world, the (ISC)2 Workforce Study estimates that the cybersecurity workforce must grow by 145%.
The number of security alerts grows continually as organizations add new threat detection tools. With security teams already overburdened with work, an overload of threat alerts can strain them.
Moreover, many of these alerts are based on inaccurate information or even false positives. In addition to draining time and resources, false positives can distract teams from dealing with real problems.
Security tools are often dispersed among organizations. There is a significant cost, complexity, and inefficiency associated with translating security alerts and policies between environments.
Cyber threat landscapes are evolving rapidly, requiring rapid monitoring and response to protect against potential cyberattacks. Cybersecurity incidents are typically costly and damaging to an organization the longer they go un-remediated.
Security Operations Centers (SOCs) are responsible for addressing threats like these. Having a SOC that monitors cyber threats round-the-clock and can respond immediately to incidents is essential.
A SOC’s primary costs are the analysts, not the technology. An organization should hire at least five security analysts to cover all shifts for a traditional SOC.
Every organization should allocate a minimum of $500,000 every year, even if they hire mainly junior team members. Even when an organization hires experienced engineers to build automated alerting tools, it generally requires $150,000 or more for each of them.
Keeping a security operations center in-house costs an organization on average $2.86 million a year, according to Ponemon.
A SOC’s ultimate goal is to detect and respond to threats. SOCs aren’t worth the financial commitment for many organizations. Many smaller organizations will prefer workarounds that offer similar functionality without the cost of a Security Operations Center, which is an excellent choice for large enterprises.
Starting slowly is the best approach, collecting log files from sources within your environment that can then be fed into automated processes. Your infrastructure can be analyzed by SIEM solutions based on log data.
In addition to providing transparency into the environment, centralized logging can also significantly reduce the amount of time spent analyzing log files from multiple sources.
It is possible to provide context around these events using a SIEM by providing the ability to analyze, search, and report on these events. A SIEM usually charges per log, but some simply charge per user. Try to find a solution that’s within your budget.
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An effective SOC requires the right people and effective tools, whether it is in-house or managed. Regardless of the type of SOC an organization is looking to implement, Infratech offers solutions to assist them.
An organization’s entire IT stack can be monitored and automated using Infratech Horizon EDR when it has its SOC. To learn more about the Security Operations Center, which will enhance and streamline your processes, reach out to us today.
With our enterprise-grade security technology, Infratech offers managed endpoint detection and response (EDR) services to companies looking to outsource their SOC operations.
Security Operations Centers (SOCs) are responsible for monitoring, preventing, detecting, investigating, and responding to cyber threats around the clock. Teams with SOC responsibilities oversee and protect intellectual property, data, business systems, and brand integrity within an organization.
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With SOC-as-a-Service (SOCaaS), you can enroll your business in a subscription-based model for threat detection and response that will allow you to achieve best-in-class levels of Security Operations Center capabilities at a fraction of the price.
A SOC Audit evaluates the risks associated with third parties and service providers. Risk management, internal governance, vendor management programs, and regulatory oversight depend on them.
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