10 Key Security Analytics Capabilities You Need for Effective Security Operations

As data breaches are becoming increasingly common, it’s important to invest in the right security analytics capabilities if you want to stay ahead of these intrusions and maintain your organization’s stability and trustworthiness. However, what capabilities should you invest in? What features will best equip you to detect and respond to cyber threats? To help with your decision-making process, here are the 10 key security analytics capabilities that will help you develop an effective security operations program.

1) Security professionals with access to relevant data

Many security operations teams only have access to a few data sources that, in turn, represent a tiny fraction of their overall enterprise footprint. This limits their ability to gain a complete and holistic view of what’s happening across their entire security landscape.

2) Proactive security operations management

With so many security tools on offer, there’s a risk that your organization will buy too many and then never get around to implementing them. Buying tools is not enough—you need effective tools that work well together to enable comprehensive and proactive security operations management (SOM). To achieve effective SOM you should be looking at security analytics capabilities to: Real-time monitoring of alerts from multiple sources; combining incidents from different platforms; correlating across systems and technologies; data visualization so you can quickly understand what is happening.

3) An automated event feed through SIEM or a similar platform

As events from your devices and security tools come in, you’ll want a way to get them into a central repository so they can be examined by other SIEM components. The same is true if you opt to use an SIEM to keep track of logs generated by firewalls and other security tools; having a central logging solution allows your security operations center (SOC) team to more easily find threats, analyze trends and perform root-cause analysis on issues.

4) SIEM capable of aggregating events and alarms from multiple security systems

SIEM (security information and event management) is essential to security operations because it unifies disparate data streams. It’s worth investing in a SIEM that can ingest events from various security technologies, such as anti-virus, intrusion prevention system (IPS), and firewalls. A good SIEM should be able to raise alerts when it detects anomalous behavior or patterns.

5) NIST 800-37 compliance audit system

Hackers continue to develop more sophisticated methods to get into companies, and they’re getting increasingly good at compromising security systems. Therefore, you need a compliance audit system that can integrate with your existing frameworks so you can spot vulnerabilities before it’s too late. Here are some of your options

6) Data visualization tools that deliver in real time what you need to know as an IT security professional

A new generation of data visualization tools can consolidate security event logs and other data sources into a single interface that provides an up-to-the-minute snapshot of what’s happening on your network—and where you need to investigate further. It’s just one way you can supercharge your enterprise security monitoring capabilities. See why data visualization tools are one of these 10 key security analytics capabilities.

7) Real-time, actionable intelligence available on a tablet or smartphone

A critical aspect of today’s security operations is staying on top of threats and performing investigations, which can often mean spending a lot of time staring at screens. In order to be more effective, analysts need real-time access to threat intelligence. Solutions that provide visibility into security incidents as they happen and facilitate collaboration are also helpful. This enables timely response to vulnerabilities and continuous monitoring of alerts throughout an organization’s environment.

8) QRadar capability for network traffic analysis and risk assessments

Enterprises need to be able to monitor and measure network traffic in order to identify abnormal behavior and security events. QRadar enables you to conduct deeper forensic analysis of network traffic data. It provides a detailed view of user, machine, application, protocol, security devices and other relevant details. With an advanced analytics platform like QRadar at your disposal, you can more easily find threats buried in your sea of data – even when they use a stealth communications channel.

9) Endpoint visibility into patch status, vulnerabilities, registry settings, and more on all devices across the enterprise

Endpoint visibility is an essential security analytics capability that allows security teams to monitor devices across their enterprise and assess risk based on machine state. This is important because it gives you a single view of all devices connected to your network—whether in use, being updated or patched, or offline. If machines are vulnerable, have not been patched, or have failed anti-malware scans, you’ll know immediately and be able to take action accordingly.

10) An integrated digital risk framework (IDRF), which provides unique insights into threats and risks using big data analytics

The ability to aggregate and analyze data from different sources and formats in near real time enables security analysts to identify, monitor, and respond to threats more effectively. In fact, IDRFs have been shown to increase revenue growth by 6%, decrease customer churn by 10%, improve employee satisfaction by 5%, and reduce operating costs by 25%.

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