A security operations center (SOC) is a vital component of any business that wants to protect its data and infrastructure. It is responsible for detecting and responding to cyberthreats, and it relies on a variety of different tools and technologies to do its job. In this article, we will discuss what these are and how they help a SOC protect the business.
Related reading: The security operations center and its key functions
Key aspects of a SOC
A SOC is a team or division within a business that monitors and analyzes data from various sources to detect and respond to threats. Its two key components are the people and the tools.
The people are the threat hunters, incident responders, and security analysts who interpret the data and decide if there are any threats that need to be addressed. They also work with other stakeholders when an incident occurs to determine how to respond appropriately while minimizing damage and ensuring business continuity.
On the other hand, the tools include the software, hardware, databases, and processes used by SOC members for detecting threats and mitigating incidents. For example, analysts may use security information and event management (SIEM) tools to aggregate data from different sources, and then investigate these events to determine if they pose any threat to the business.
Now that we know what a SOC does, let’s take a look at the different tools and technologies that it uses.
Essential SOC tools and technologies
Most security strategies follow a triad of essential functions: protect, detect, and respond. The same is true for SOCs. The challenge here is that businesses can choose from hundreds, if not thousands, of different tools to accomplish these functions.
The following are some examples of the most important tools and technologies that every SOC should have.
Asset discovery is the process of identifying and cataloging all devices and systems that are connected to a network. These include both physical and virtual devices, as well as servers, desktops, laptops, mobile devices, and other endpoints.
The goal of asset discovery is to have a comprehensive view of the business’s IT infrastructure so that threats can be more easily identified.
Vulnerability assessment is the process of identifying and evaluating vulnerabilities in systems, networks, and applications. This includes both known or present vulnerabilities and potential ones that could be exploited by hackers.
Vulnerability assessments usually involve performing scans using a vulnerability scanner or manually auditing devices and systems to find security holes that need to be patched. The goal is to identify any weaknesses that can be taken advantage of by attackers, then mitigate them to prevent breaches from occurring.
Behavioral monitoring is the process of tracking user activity on a network in order to identify malicious or unauthorized behavior. This can include activities like accessing sensitive data, installing malware, or making suspicious network connections.
Behavioral monitoring is a key component of threat detection since it provides visibility into what users are doing on the network, which can help SOC analysts identify suspicious activity before it causes any damage.
Intrusion detection involves continuously monitoring for signs of unauthorized access to systems, networks, or data. It typically uses a combination of signature-based detection (i.e., matching known malicious patterns) and anomaly-based detection (i.e., identifying unexpected or unauthorized activity).
An intrusion detection system (IDS) is one of the basic tools for SOCs, as it provides a way to detect attacks right as they happen. The use of an IDS allows for faster response and mitigation of the threat.
Security information and event management
SIEM is a system for collecting, managing, and analyzing security-related data from multiple sources. It can include data from firewalls, IDSes, antivirus software, user activity logs, and other sources.
SIEM tools help a SOC to identify potential threats quickly by providing a single interface where all the relevant data can be accessed. This centralized platform enables analysts to more easily identify patterns and trends that may indicate an attack.
Related reading: 7 Benefits of having a security operations center
As you can see, there are different tools and technologies that SOCs use to protect businesses from cyberthreats. By understanding the basics of these tools, you can make better decisions about what solutions your business needs for its own SOC.
To learn more about how a SOC can help your business, contact our experts at outsourceIT today.