Introduction to SOAR

Organizations are getting bigger and bigger and, because of that a lot of events, activities and data are being generated and triggered, and the scale of these events sometimes reaches to a peak, where analysts are not able to handle them anymore.

For the purpose of having control and visibility over the system events, logs and other valuable data that may indicate anything related to compromise or unwanted actions, companies are heavily integrating their infrastructures with solutions like Security Information and Event Management (SIEM), as well as creating Security Operations Center with skilled SOC Analysts to monitor and analyze all this as well as alert/notify and even prevent malicious activities. This all sounds great, but as Security Operations Center and SIEM Solution became popular, security researchers understood that very frequently SOC Analysts are forced to perform daily identification, remediation, containment, recovery actions that can be easily automated, and as this is not automated yet in most of the companies, SOC Analysts are wasting hours and hours to do tasks that are common and repetitive, additionally this may push away the analyst from real threats, because of being distracted with tasks that can be automated. As the problem of automation has raised, security researchers have created a solution called SOAR.

SOAR stands for Security Orchestration, Automation, and Response. SOAR has the capability and features of threat and vulnerability management, security incident response and security operations automation. SOAR allows companies to collect threat-related data from a range of sources and automate responses to low-level threats. Tasks which were performed by SOC Analysts such as analyzing IP address reputation, blocking suspicious IP address, isolating virtual machine from network, and many other tasks can be automated if the appropriate digital playbook is created and implemented.

In a short SOAR integrates all of the tools, systems and applications within an organization’s security toolset and then enables the SOC team to automate incident response workflows. SOAR’s main benefit to a SOC is that it automates and orchestrates time-consuming, manual tasks, including opening a ticket in a tracking system, such as Jira, without requiring any human intervention, which allows engineers and analysts to better use their specialized skills.

SOAR Features:

  • Alert Overload: A SIEM may generate so many alerts that analysts can’t keep up. By automating the response to many alerts, SOAR helps to prevent SOC personnel from becoming overwhelmed and suffering alert fatigue.
  • Lack of Talent: Good SOC Analysts are hard to find. And when you do hire them, you do not want to waste their time and skills on tedious, repetitive security tasks. SOAR automates those tasks so that engineers are free to focus on more complex issues and make the most of their expertise.
  • SOC Response: SOAR serves as a central station for the SecOps team to monitor and respond to alerts, as well as to communicate and collaborate on a response. To minimize the risk of breaches and limit the vast damage and disruption they can cause, rapid response is vital. SOAR helps organization to reduce mean time to detect (MTTD) and mean time to respond (MTTR) by enabling security alerts to be qualified and remediated in minutes, rather than days, weeks and months.
  • Visual Playbook Builder: Create smart automated workflows with ease of product integrations, convert your playbooks into digital playbooks with ease and automate the tasks.
  • Delivering better quality intelligence: Tackling the latest sophisticated cyber security threats requires an in-depth understanding of attackers’ tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs) and an ability to identify indicators of compromise (IOCs). By aggregating and validating data from a wide range of sources, including threat intelligence platforms, exchanges, and security technologies such as firewalls, intrusion detection systems, SIEM and UEBA technologies, SOAR helps SOCs to become more intelligence-driven. The effect of this is that security personnel are able to contextualize incidents, make better informed decisions and accelerate incident detection and response.
  • Flexible Integration: The ability of SOAR Solution to integrate within your environment is wonderful, as the vendors of SOAR products have done a great job to make the process of connecting various security tools or assets to SOAR product easy and manageable.
SOC Features and Use Cases

Click here to read more about SOAR use cases and the benefits of implementing security automation using SOAR.