These days business strategies are being aligned with Information Technology (IT) and the strategic use of IT in business has become the key in having a competitive edge in the market. The greatest challenge is to protect the business data and secure the IT environment. For this, enterprises have specialized teams like the Network Operations Center(NOC), Security Operations Center (SOC), Risk and Audit team. Further, enterprises opt for best practices or they have to meet the regulations.
Those enterprises which have developed an IT Strategy with centralized approach are succeeding in protecting their business data and also in achieving a secure IT environment. Others are facing increasing complexity in managing their IT environment and protecting the business data. The main reason is because they are trying to achieve this by deploying multiple point tools to manage the IT environment. Yes these tools may be the best of the breed in the industry but these point solutions don’t share the data nor has data integrity. They just deliver isolated needs of each team. Teams are interested in filling the gaps by deploying these point tools but they don’t understand the complexity in operations, may be the NOC or SOC team may achieve the goal individually but time will bring out the false positives and after a year it becomes the fact that complete IT operations have become inefficient. They realize thousands of dollars went down the drains and even jobs are at risk.
A decentralized approach and filling the gap with point solutions do work when the organization has expert and dedicated engineers, and organizations need to fully depend on them. But how long will someone stay in the same organization? People change jobs. Even if you have experts they have to manually correlate and collaborate the security data among different teams to identify security incidents as well as for root cause analysis and forensics. So enterprises need to choose, either the centralized approach or go through the hard complex process and re-engineer to develop a centralized system after suffering the pain.
Enterprises need a solution which delivers centralized security, risk & compliance automation for the NOC, SOC, Risk and Audit team. Point tools can meet requirements initially but to get a true situational awareness of the enterprise environment there should be automated correlation of data in all areas (log, vulnerability, asset, configuration, performance & flow), collaboration between SOC, NOC, Risk & Audit teams as well as consolidation of data and a single enterprise view of the data.
Some of the complexities or issues in Security Environment are:
1. Monitoring 1000s of logs daily and making sense of it.
2. There can be false positives and incident identification is manual process. You are reporting to management what happened not what is happening.
3. Tedious job of manual correlation of security data for root cause analysis, it takes days and may not be accurate or true.
4. The Swivel Chair Analysis – Organization have isolated management tools and devices which makes the security operations manual. Forensic takes long time
5. You may be getting IDS alerts on attacks but many a times these alerts will come few time and then no further alerts is generated. Usually after the initial forensic (analysis of log data) no further suspicious activity is identified and case is closed. No advanced intelligence to detect low and slow attacks.
6. Security data can be manipulated when you have syslog servers or common databases
7. Cost and man hours involved in security operations
These are some of the concern areas customers face in security environment and just having log data won’t help you secure your network. You need a security solution, which automates security and compliance there by increasing efficiency, minimizing management complexity and reducing operational cost.