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Security automation

Security automation

Security automation entails the use of technology to perform tasks with reduced human assistance for the purpose of integrating security processes, applications, and infrastructure.

Overview

Security automation comprises the implementation of security initiatives capable of programmatically detecting, analyzing, and remediating cyber attacks by identifying potential threats and triaging and classifying alerts as they occur in real time, and subsequently addressing them. One significant benefit of automating security operations is the lessening of repetitive, time-consuming tasks for security analysts, freeing them to focus on other tasks. According to one study, IT departments ignore 74% of security incidents or alerts even if security measures are in place on account of overlarge volume. Security automation also removes the possibility for human error.

The expansion of infrastructure and networks complicates the process of managing security and compliance manually as systems gain in complexity. Manual operations can lead to slower detection and remediation of issues, errors in the configuration of resources, and inconsistency in the application of policies, exposing systems to compliance issues and attacks. According to Red Hat, full deployment of security automation can reduce the average cost of a data breach by 95%.

SOAR (security orchestration, automation and response)

SOAR (security orchestration, automation and response) consists of software programs that enable organizations to gather data about security threats and address them without human assistance. The objective of SOAR platforms is to improve the efficiency of physical and digital security operations in three main areas: security orchestration, security automation, and security response.

Security orchestration

Security orchestration connects and integrates various internal and external tools through built-in or custom integrations and application programming interfaces (APIs). These tools may include vulnerability scanners, endpoint protection products, end-user behavior analytics, firewalls, intrusion detection and intrusion prevention systems (IDSes/IPSes), and security information and event management (SIEM) platforms, as well as external threat intelligence feeds.

Security automation

Security automation absorbs and analyzes data and creates repeated, automated processes to replace manual processes. Tasks performed manually by analysts, such as vulnerability scanning, log analysis, ticket checking and auditing capabilities, can be automatically carried out by SOAR platforms. SOAR automation can make recommendations and automate future responses as well as use Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to decode and adapt insights from analysts.

Security response

Security response offers analysts a single view into the planning, managing, monitoring, and reporting of actions carried out when a threat is detected. It also includes post-incident response activities, such as case management, reporting, and threat intelligence sharing.

Benefits of SOAR

According to SearchSecurity, SOAR platforms offer can offer numerous benefits for enterprise security operations (SecOps) teams:

  • Faster incident detection and reaction times: SOAR's improved data context, combined with automation, can bring lower mean time to detect (MTTD) and mean time to respond (MTTR). Faster detection and response to threats can mitigate their impact.
  • More thorough threat context: The integration of a large quantity of data from a wide array of tools and systems allows SOAR platforms to offer threat context, in-depth analysis and up-to-date threat information.
  • Simplified management: SOAR platforms consolidate various security systems' dashboards into a single interface. This helps SecOps and other teams by centralizing information and data handling, simplifying management, and saving time.
  • Scalability: Scaling manual processes can require a lot of effort on the part of employees and in some cases prove impossible to keep up with as the volume of security events grows. SOAR's orchestration, automation and workflows can help meet scalability demands.
  • Improving analysts' productivity: Automating lower-level threats enables SecOps and security operations center (SOC) teams to prioritize tasks more effectively and respond to threats that require human intervention more promptly.
  • Streamlining operations: Standardized procedures that automate lower-level tasks enable SecOps teams to respond to more threats than manual methods in the same time period. These automated workflows also ensure the same standardized remediation efforts are applied across all systems within the infrastructure.
  • Reporting and collaboration: SOAR platforms' reporting and analysis consolidate information quickly, enabling data management processes and response efforts to update existing security policies and programs.
  • Lowering costs: Supporting security analysts with SOAR tools can lower costs, as opposed to performing all threat analysis, detection, and response tasks manually.

Security automation companies

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Further reading

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Advanced Monitoring and Security Automation Keep Businesses a Step Ahead of Hackers | BizTech

Adam Stone - BizTech

Web

September 2, 2021

How Agencies Are Approaching Cybersecurity Automation | FedTech

Phil Goldstein - FedTech

Web

September 21, 2020

Security Automation in Information Technology | ResearchGate

Sikender Mohsienuddin Mohammad, Lakshmisri Surya

PDF

June 2018

Security Automation: The Future of Enterprise Defense | Security Intelligence

Gavin Kenny - Security Intelligence, IBM

Web

February 26, 2021

Documentaries, videos and podcasts

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References

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