Many companies are looking to bring automation because of the growing complexity and impact of cybersecurity attacks. The ever expanding complexity of security tools creating alerts is the reason companies are looking to develop or revitalize SOCs (Security Operations Centers) or outsource this function known as Security automation. According to Gartner, by 2022, 50% of all SOCs will change into advanced SOCs with combined incident response, threat intelligence, and threat hunting abilities, up from less than 10% in 2015.
The Gartner report further stated that companies are now focusing on automating alert triage and investing in tools that are more delicate and are concentrating on a balance between response and detection versus prevention. The increase in more advanced alerts and tools has directed to an elevated need to organize and optimize operations, which means SOCs are now a business asset.
Challenges of Tier-1 SOC Analysts
With the snowballing number of security alerts being collected, important analyst time is being spent classifying through an excess of security alerts. Most usually, time is spent doing a multitude of ordinary tasks to triage and discover the integrity of the alerts, often occurring in alerts being juggled or those of more damaging outcomes sliding through the net as they are overlooked. The SOC analyst’s time would be better spent running on the more advanced alerts that demand human intervention, as well as proactively threat hunting, in order to reduce the time from breach detection to resolution.
Even though companies are working to get their arms around the ever-shifting threat aspect by executing SOCs, Gartner's research has unveiled that superfluous alerts, outdated metrics, and confined integration are driving to over-taxed devices within the SOCs.
As mentioned earlier, most security operations teams get thousands of alerts per day and can only examine and react to a small portion of them. The Tier 1 analysts are the ones on the front line of this alert deluge, making them the ones most receptive to alert fatigue and ultimately, job burnout.
How ATAR can help?
The ATAR security orchestration basically transforms the game for SOC analysts by building a single, cohesive interface for running disparate security tools. It decreases the requirement for expertise in each technology and as with the automation of alert grouping, this puts more time back into the analysts’ day for tasks that truly require human intervention.
ATAR helps the organization to achieve automated procedures for shorter response times and the right approach. By using ATAR, SOC teams can transfer repetitive actions to the platform and whenever an incident happens ATAR will manage it without human interplay. ATAR also supports to bring the incident up to a particular point that human analysts can take over from that point and proceed to act on the incident. When a new employee comes at the SOC, (s)he is given playbooks explaining what to do in the event of a special type of incident.
For example, playbooks describe a well-defined list of actions along with preconditions following a flowchart. SOCs combine detection actions on a SIEM; all alerts from other detection methods are usually concentrated on the SIEM. Further SIEM serves as a detection arrangement itself through investigation of the gathered logs and traffic. Incidents do happen on other carriers as well, carriers such as e-mails, phone calls, etc., but a large bulk comes through alerts produced by the SIEM in charge. ATAR can also collect and manage alerts arising from systems not connected.
There are just so many repeated and manual search tasks in a standard SOC today. Malware alerts arrive in dozens, as are various suspended logins etc. SOC analysts dislike such normal exercises; at the end of the day, the ordinary is not exciting. ATAR offload such repetitive manual processes, so the analysts can concentrate on more important, more out of conventional cases.
If one sums up all the incidents managed at a SOC by monthly rate, the top-5 most commonly reported incident types estimate for 50% of all the incidents that occurred during the specified timeframe. Keeping this in understanding, ATAR’s purpose is to automate the most common 3-5 playbooks if feasible, offloading 30-40% of all incidents to automation.
ATAR automation can be fully autonomous, operating a playbook from end to end. When complete automation is not acceptable, ATAR has an alternative to requesting for permission before important actions. For example, ATAR can control an investigation in an essentially automated way but would request for permission before blocking a specific IP address on the border firewall. Most SOCs begin using the ATAR automation with as many permission cases, but they shed such permissions as soon as they begin developing their faith in the automated playbooks.


Gamze Bingöl
Marketing Manager