What is a Security Operations Center, and what does it do?

A Security Operations Center (SOC) is an essential component of a company’s security against cyberattacks and unwanted access. Asset discovery and management, incident response, and other functions are performed by security operations professionals. You can make an informed selection on which system best matches your needs by learning about the many types of security operations. Here are some crucial terms to be aware of when it comes to best SOC as a service. Continue reading to find out more.


Asset identification and management

Asset discovery and management are critical components of security operations when it comes to cybersecurity. Vulnerabilities and current threats, as well as installed and decommissioned assets, can all be identified with the help of a good asset detection and management solution. It also shows which software and hardware components need to be optimised or maintained. This data can be used to figure out how much hardware and software will cost, as well as how much extra software or hardware will be needed. Asset discovery and management can assist you in preventing unwanted access to company data and information while also lowering IT costs.

By identifying all internet-facing assets, asset identification and management can help you automate the inventory process. This allows you to maintain your attention on discovering security risks and vulnerabilities as soon as possible. Asset detection and management can also aid in the automation of compliance and auditing procedures. You’ll know if assets are compliant with internal and external regulations thanks to automated asset discovery. You’ll have a clear picture of your attack surface and know when to fix or enhance your defences.

A well-designed SOC can help you save money by lowering the costs of different security systems. The centre can keep track of all machines and equipment, as well as document their operation. The method for executing asset detection and management is determined by the organization’s functionality and security requirements. The tactics of security operations centres are based on a layered approach to security. Because many security suppliers specialise in different layers, your company will need to select a solution that can handle all of them.

Unlicensed software and hardware can be detected and managed using an asset detection and management tool, which can also identify any software that isn’t licenced. Unauthorized users may face penalties, thus software licencing are crucial. On both premised and cloud systems, an asset discovery tool can assist you in detecting issues that affect virtual and physical assets. You may easily assess the susceptibility of any cloud environment or detect weaknesses in on-premises networks using asset discovery.

Security analysts collect and analyse network activity logs as part of the SOC’s job to identify potential threats and perform incident remediation. A SIEM is used by some SOCs to aggregate and correlate data streams from a variety of sources, such as firewalls and operating systems. A SIEM is an important part of security operations, but it does a lot more than just deal with problems as they happen. It detects dangers and defends an organisation against them.



Response to an incident


Incident response is one of the most important responsibilities of a Security Operations Center (SOC) for avoiding and responding to cybersecurity problems. SOCs manage recovery and mitigation activities after an attack, in addition to preparing for and managing an incident. For each situation, incident response plans provide a clear structure for command and accountability, as well as detailed action procedures. Top-performing SOCs conduct regular tabletop exercises with the rest of the organisation to ensure that everyone is on the same page.

Virtual security incidents frequently occur as a result of a natural system breakdown, such as traffic congestion or hardware maintenance. If a SOC is part of a larger event detection programme, it will be able to respond to these types of situations more quickly. As a result, not every company can sustain a SOC in-house, and many companies outsource this function. While an organisation may not be able to implement all of a SOC’s tasks, it is critical to guarantee that it is performing to its full potential.

Even though incident response is an important component of the SOC, it is still a reactive process. It has a significant impact on how long it takes to recognise and respond to an occurrence. To detect unusual behaviour, incident response teams use a network’s profile and a log retention policy. They must prioritise and mitigate an assault after it has been detected. The post-event activity phase entails assessing the performance of the incident response team and determining any necessary measures.

Threat management, which entails gathering and analysing data in order to detect hostile behaviour, is at the heart of a successful SOC approach.

Firewalls, threat intelligence, intrusion prevention systems, probes, and SIEM systems are commonly used by these teams to collect security-relevant data. They also generate alarms based on aberrant data. Asset detection and management are also part of a SOC strategy, which include making sure that all assets are operational, patched, and updated.


Management of incidents

A SOC’s incident handling is crucial. Every day, security operations teams get a large number of notifications and examine them to determine whether or not an event is legitimate. When an event is discovered, analysts prioritize the alerts and consult with a variety of stakeholders to decide the best course of action. Complex methods and tools are frequently used in security events. The SOC commander is in charge of the SOC team and decides how to respond to the situation in the most effective way possible.

To create a baseline for “typical” network activity, the SOC gathers and evaluates network activity records. These logs provide information that may expose dangers and assist with incident cleanup. To collect and correlate data flows from network devices, endpoints, and applications, most SOCs employ SIEM software. SOCs can assess which threats are most widespread and which solutions are best suited to manage them by monitoring network behavior.

Analysts in the SOC perform 12-hour shifts. One night crew analyst leaves at 5:48 a.m., indicating that they haven’t gotten any sleep. They must maintain vigilance, which incident response orchestration software may assist with. When utilized correctly, IR software can assist SOC analysts in remaining aware and responding more quickly. By automating the process of gathering and storing data, orchestration software may help SOC incident response strategies.

Endpoints and networks are also monitored for vulnerabilities by a security operations center. These groups may also keep an eye on critical data and verify that security requirements are followed. Incident management and threat hunting teams must have solid working connections with security operations teams. A security operation center should include a team of specialists devoted to fulfilling their individual responsibilities in addition to a SOC. This sort of team is frequently made up of persons who have been affected by a security breach.

A SOC with a NOC will be more focused on threat response. While the majority of these security issues take place in virtual environments, NOCs may be better at handling hardware and network repair than a centralized SOC. Organizations that rely significantly on their network for day-to-day operations are in the same boat. Many SOCs are hybrid organizations that combine the two. As a result, merging these functions into a single team might aid firms in defining their roles and responsibilities.


Tool for incident management

The Security Operations Center (SOC) is an incident management solution that may assist your company in dealing with cyber-attacks. SOCs can deal with a wide range of threats, including malware, ransomware, and new threats. When an incident is confirmed, they operate as a first line of defense and may be a valuable tool in limiting the spread of assaults. SOCs can even safeguard your firm from financial damage due to lost data, depending on the sort of occurrence.

The security operations center serves as a central command post for IT infrastructure telemetry collection and analysis. These centers monitor and analyze situations 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and make decisions about how to manage them. Security teams can notice issues promptly and respond effectively by collecting and analyzing all of this information. By designing an automated system to give along the necessary information to the relevant individuals and enabling direct action, the SOC may also help you prevent expensive gaps.

A security operations center can assist your company in monitoring security data collected throughout its IT infrastructure. Firewalls, intrusion detection systems, antivirus software, and network devices can all contribute to this data. The data may be classified and interpreted by the SOC analytic team based on its relevance to the organization. They also preserve a thorough inventory of the organization’s assets. They also keep an eye on security incidents that aren’t reported to the right people.

A SIEM is a robust incident management technology that monitors and analyzes events in real time. Threat intelligence, correlation, machine learning, alerting, dashboards, and forensic capabilities are some of the sophisticated services it can give. Security personnel can map out the problem and avoid recurrence of the occurrence by evaluating this data. They may also simply discover which employee is stealing sensitive data using SIEM.