In today’s digital world, businesses depend on technology and data to operate. As the amount of data increases, there is also an increased reliance on systems, applications, and devices to keep operations going. With these changes comes the greater risk of cyber threats and attacks.
When you make the effort to secure your organisation’s IT infrastructure, it can become apparent there are vulnerabilities that challenge the security of your data. It is essential you have the right tools and people looking out for your company’s best interests and keeping critical data safe.
Understanding the role of the security operations centre is one of the key steps to ensuring your security protocols can protect the data used and stored by your business.
What is a security operations centre?
The security operations center (SOC) has an integral role in cybersecurity. This is a security team that is responsible for monitoring, detecting, analysing, and responding to cybersecurity alerts.
Essentially, the SOC is the hub of cybersecurity operations for businesses. The combination of highly skilled security professionals and advanced security tools allows the SOC to work in real-time to detect and mitigate the threat of existing cyber threats and improve your organisation’s security posture to defend against potential future threats.
Some companies have in-house SOC teams, housing all employees, infrastructure, and tools for threat detection and response within the company. However, this is a huge financial investment that is usually out of reach for enterprise businesses. But it is of paramount importance for companies to have a skilled, reliable and capable cybersecurity team.
This often means organisations will seek SOC services from a third party, such as a managed security services provider, to get the same benefits of an in-house team without the cost and limited flexibility. Outsourcing security services allows for 24/7/365 monitoring of your network, which increases the protection for your business.
Roles within the SOC Team
One of the main components of the SOC are the security analysts and engineers, who are responsible for monitoring and protecting against potential attackers. They work in conjunction with supervisors, who make sure everything is running smoothly.
Cybersecurity experts work within a multi-tiered system to combat threats through best practices, threat detection, and response. A SOC team can typically consist of:
- Security analysts: first responders to security incidents, SOC analysts watch for alerts and analyse threats to determine their urgency and when to move it up to the next level. Analysts manage security tools and run regular reports
- Security architect: create the framework or architecture of security systems, provide guidance on how to build or maintain systems from a security perspective,
- Security engineer: work to put into practice the security framework, maintain existing software and tools, keep systems updated and recommend changes for more effective security.
- SOC manager: oversees the whole SOC team, supervises staff and creates protocols and policies, to keep the SOC running smoothly.
- CISO: the Chief Information Security Officer has the responsibility for developing and implementing the security operations of an organisation. This includes procedures, policies, and strategies regarding security, as well as compliance management and reporting security issues to the company CEO.
The responsibilities of a SOC team
The SOC team involves people, processes, and technology. They provide real-time incident response and ongoing security improvements to protect your enterprise information and data from cyber attacks. Through the application of both the right security tools and skilled security experts, the SOC can monitor, assess, and defend the entire business network.
The SOC team uses a range of security tools that collect security information and event data, to monitor for anomalies and alerts, and protect your IT system in real-time. But they’re also preparing for any future threats. The team will proactively look for weaknesses inside and outside the organisation, through security analysis and penetration testing, which is attempting to hack a system to find weak spots. Security analysis looks into the tools being used to protect the system, what is and isn’t working, and makes recommendations for updates or changes.
Some of the responsibilities of the SOC team include:
- Round-the-clock monitoring of systems, hardware, and software to detect threats and respond to incidents
- Provide expert advice on the tools being used, including third-party vendors, to ensure security compliance
- Offer guidance on patch management and application whitelisting
- Analyse, investigate, and report on security trends
- Analyse security data from external and internal sources
- Investigate security breaches for prevention of future attacks
- Enforcing security policies and procedures
- And more.
Every business is subject to cybersecurity threats that can lead to expensive operational disruption, ransom demands, and loss of customer trust. If you are unsure about your organisation’s security risk posture, talk to the security experts at INTELLIWORX, for unrivaled protection of your business data.