Security Operations Center (SOC) is an organizational structure dedicated to the implementation of all the security operations of an organization against cyberattacks. These actions include the supervision and protection of an organization’s information system (workstations, networks, website, applications, databases, etc.)
The elementary particles of a SOC are: the team, the data, the tools and procedures. A frequent error consists in reducing a SOC to only one of these components, for example to the physical place where the supervision takes place, or to the only software platform.
Furthermore, a SOC is not only for organizations with large information systems or those operating in high-exposure industries such as finance or saving operators. Its use is simply intended for organizations in all sectors of activity who wish to protect their data against computer threats.
What is a SOC used for in a Cyber strategy?
A SOC provides an organization with the ability to detect, respond to, and prevent cyberattacks. It can also be used to:
What are the different types of SOCs?
In the collective imagination, a traditional SOC is made up of a large team, operating 24/7, internal to the company or organization, and supervising only the company’s own IT assets. However, the structures that can afford this type of SOC are only large groups or large public bodies.
In reality, there are a variety of SOC models, ranging from a very small team working during office hours, to a service managed by a third-party provider, to… no SOC at all! The choice is often based on the company’s human and budgetary resources, whereas it should be mainly based on a risk analysis.
Small or medium-sized companies, or even mid-size companies, which start a serious cybersecurity approach generally rightly start with managed services, sometimes in connection with their outsourcing services when they exist.
As for MSSPs (Managed Security Services Providers), the same SOC often provides coverage for several client entities, and the largest MSSPs have a territorial network allowing them to “follow the sun” to ensure 24/7 coverage.
How does a SOC work?
The main function of a SOC is the collection, analysis, interpretation of data related to information security in order to :
- Detect intrusion attempts,
- Provide the appropriate responses and, when this fails,
- Facilitate the investigation, cleaning and repairing the information system to reduce the impacts as much as possible.
To accomplish this, the SOC has several tools from which analysts can monitor, investigate, and manage various systems from a single location. These tools include, for example, SIEM (Security Information and Event Management). This serves first of all to collect and bring together on the same processing infrastructure, data from networks, terminals, industrial systems, applications and other sources of information of the organization.
Then, with the support of information from CTI (Cyber Threat Intelligence), the SOC team can analyze this data in order to identify potential threats or vulnerabilities that would compromise the security of the organization.
In the event of proven malicious activity, it can take steps to mitigate those threats before they harm the business.-type tools SOAR can then be mobilized in this case to simplify and accelerate remediation.
The tooling of a SOC can quickly become complex if the organization is content to pile on expert solutions. The proliferation of tools is a source of inefficiency, and can sometimes become dangerous by conferring a false sense of protection. This is why it has become essential, in modern SOCs, to acquire a software platform capable of federating all the available means.
How to effectively equip a SOC?
On SEKOIA.IO, we have developed a SOC platform that provides teams with a turnkey operational capability to automatically detect and respond to security incidents, regardless of the attack surface.
This SOC platform does not only perform the functions of a classic SIEM (Security Information & Event Management): It natively integrates on a unified console, all the components necessary for the security of your organization. You will find:
- an CTI integrated very contextualized, containing more than 500 actionable detection rules and whose presence serves to amplify your ability to detect threats
- a SOAR (Security Orchestration, Automation and Response) through customizable playbooks incident response
- as well as all the useful functions of a security back-end: a powerful and responsive Data Lake, open APIs for smooth integrations, SaaS deployment for a transparent MCO/MCS.
Finally, a SOC must be prepared to follow the organization it protects in all its future developments: scope extensions, international growth, addition of functionalities or new technologies, regulatory changes… This is why it is vital that the SecOps platform chosen has the necessary flexibility and agility so as not to confine the organization to a closed environment.
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