Modern attacks are almost entirely automated. By using purpose-built malware, attackers can get in, do malice and get out of an organization in less than 15 to 20 minutes. Cyber defenders, in most cases, cannot even start an investigation that fast. The good news is Security Orchestration, Automation and Response (SOAR) can help organizations leverage the risks to data, services, and reputation in a timely manner. Here are the top 6 benefits of implementing a SOAR solution for organizations.
1. Automation: Agile Security Against Smart Threats
The sheer volume of attempts by the range of low-level to nation-state threat actors is enough to overwhelm SOC and CSIRT teams. While the overwhelming majority of these attempts are unsophisticated, they are usually successful because they can be subtle and quick. Luckily, SOAR’s automation capabilities can handle the majority of attempts automatically for your SOC team - allowing them to focus on harder-to-detect threats.
Automation feature is the top benefit because, in today’s world, this simply cannot be done efficiently by humans anymore. Even the largest SOCs would be limited by human analysts. But with a SOAR solution, proactive and reactive security measures are automated into tailored playbooks.
2. Improved Performance on Recovery and Issue Adjudication
The second most beneficial quality of a SOAR solution is the improvements to recovery and issue resolution. On an hourly basis, a SOC is analyzing network data and potential phishing emails and intrusions. SOAR tools have been shown to improve issue adjudication accuracy and speed significantly by ensuring analysts to collect evidence quickly and automatically. Recovery and incident response performance also increase.
SOAR tools make investigative tasks - which may take hours, days, or even months - much simpler by automatically conducting basic evidence collection. This allows an incident response team to focus on the broader context and details during an investigation.
3. Integration to Your Entire Security Infrastructure
Data is useless without context. Desperate tools working independently are not as useful as an integrated suite of tools that complement each other. A focus of SOAR is to bring such integration. For example, consider Threat Intelligence. The essential context needed before, during, and after an incident is Threat Intelligence. Threat Intelligence enables the quick adjudication of a suspected phishing email or of an anomalous spike in the network activity, for example. This can’t be an afterthought – you need Threat Intelligence alongside other contextual information to understand the big picture.
SOAR integrates Threat Intelligence into dashboards and incident response reports. SOAR tools automatically collect necessary information and deliver it to analysts. It is better to spend less time looking for Threat Intelligence and more time using Threat Intelligence. All of this saves time, improves accuracy, and increases relevancy by using trusted sources of Threat Intelligence. SOAR integrates all of your tools in such a manner, allowing your team to focus on the big picture instead of singular data points.
4. Data and Task Visualization and Dashboarding
Have you been in a situation where you knew all of the right answers, but you didn’t have a good way to quickly show the answers to the right people? SOAR provides tools to ensure that the right information is delivered to the right people at the right time. For a SOC, this means real-time visualization of traffic and ongoing activity. For a CSIRT, this might mean that log and Threat Intelligence data are blended in a way that allows a broader understanding of past activity.
This is where SOAR orchestration really shines. During an incident, the last thing you want is disparate tools that cannot be integrated into a common reporting scheme. SOAR does the integration of these tools and helps them work together in a fashion tailored for each organization.
5. Standardization of Incident Response Activities
When responding to an incident, having a predictable, repeatable process is just as important as achieving a good recovery. For example, Cybersecurity Incident Response Teams (CSIRT) must convey trust to the victim of the incident – which means that IR processes must be well known. Don’t make the mistake of inventing a new response process after an incident occurs.
A SOAR solution provides capabilities such as alerts, triaging, case management tools. These tools are built from the lessons of many incidents from many other organizations, which means they are well built, time-tested, repeatable and compatible with information security standards. All of this means more standardization and more trust.
6. Savings and Performance Benefits
You don’t need to have a Security Operations Center (SOC), to use SOAR tools. In fact, many organizations that don’t use a SOC still use SOAR tools. But if an organization does have a SOC, then it is even more clear that its data and services are worth protecting. The problem is that a SOC is expensive, especially to scale. With SOAR tools, a SOC can automate many functions, which will reduce manpower costs and will increase performance. The automation features allow for better detection rates of potential threats because the humans running the SOC are aided in tedious data analysis tasks. Think about it, a SOC needs to focus on anomalies that are credible, not on every single spike. That would be distracting and inefficient. Instead, SOAR automation tools can allow a SOC to scale as an organization grows while improving performance simultaneously.
SOAR Provides an Undeniable Advantage
These six benefits are just some of the reasons to consider implementing SOAR solutions which provides the necessary integration to maximize performance while reducing the risk for data and services that are worth protecting. Orchestration and automation are essential advantages that put SOC and CSIRT teams on a level playing field with today’s threat actors. In other words, the benefit is clear: a substantial return on investment in protecting critical data, services, and reputation.
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