We have more data at our fingertips than ever before, but for security teams, this means more to sift through and analyze. Most of these tasks are manual, routine, and time-intensive, and finding (and retaining) good talent to do this is a growing challenge. Even with the right resources, chances are you’ll run up against systems that don’t integrate well and therefore can’t share data. This can be problematic when trying to correlate threat data across security tools during an investigation, or to confirm critical patches are put in place.
Thankfully, more and more companies are turning to security orchestration and automation (SOAR) tools to solve these pain points, get more done faster, and improve their overall security maturity. When getting started, it can be difficult to understand exactly what SOAR can actually do for you (e.g., which processes are good candidates for automation, which steps can you maintain control over, etc.) That’s why we created the Security Orchestration and Automation Playbook: to help you understand which use cases are prime for security orchestration and automation. Even better, we’ve included sample workflows and time savings figures to turn the abstract idea of SOAR into tangible, real-life takeaways.
Some of the popular SOAR use cases we discuss in the playbook include:
Automating phishing investigations
The most common attack vector today, phishing attacks, are on every company’s mind. However, investigating them is tedious and manual work. SOAR solutions can automate phishing investigation tasks (such as checking suspicious URLs), freeing up a considerable amount of your team’s time.
Automating the provisioning and deprovisioning of users
When employees join a company, it’s crucial they’re given correct access to the systems they need to do their job. When employees leave a company, it’s just as critical (or more) to remove their access to ensure a neglected account doesn’t become a vulnerability into the company. Unfortunately, tasks like these become deprioritized or forgotten about in lieu of other high-priority ones. Thankfully, this is another key area in which SOAR can help by managing user permissions, removing departing employees, and handling incidents that arise.
Automating malware investigations and containment
From ransomware and viruses to spyware and more, there are many attack vectors that security teams need to detect and contain. As these attacks become stealthier, it increases the risk of compromise. SOAR tools can integrate with your existing security stack to streamline the process of identifying suspicious activity, investigating threats, and containing and removing them. This can free up your team’s time so they can focus on more interesting and strategic projects.
Automating alert enrichment
Not all alerts are created equal. While some are blatant false positives, others can lack context and require additional research in order to be validated. SOAR can accelerate the alert enrichment process by correlating information across security tools and weeding out false positives so your team has a smaller number of alerts to tend to.
Automating ChatOps Distributed Alerting
SOAR enables Distributed Alerting, which is the strategic sending of alerts via Slack or similar tools to the right people, with the goal of reducing alert fatigue and inbox overload. By delegating tasks among security tools right from your ChatOps tool, your security operations can be managed from one simple interface.
Automating threat hunting
Being proactive about threats that could impact your organization is a great position to be in, but most companies simply don’t have the resources to do this. SOAR can help even the smallest of companies keep up with threat hunting by analyzing massive data sets and kicking off response workflows based on the threats discovered, leaving time for your most important assets—your people—to use their expertise where it’s most critical.
Automating patching and remediation
Finding threats is half the equation—the other half is patching them, and fast. With the ability to integrate across your security tools, SOAR can take tasks from notification to remediation so you no longer have to worry whether a patch was taken care of or whether your organization is open to vulnerabilities.
Simplify SOAR implementation
When implemented correctly, a SOAR solution reduces the burden on your team and frees them up to focus on what they do best: making pivotal decisions and responding to threats. When you can optimize where your talent spends their time and automate their rote tasks, you not only increase their value and productivity, but also the likelihood of employees sticking around longer and your security becoming stronger.
Be sure to read through our Security Orchestration and Automation Playbook today to see how SOAR can solve your biggest pain points and how you can begin implementing it with ease.