Five SIEM Tools That Every SOC Analyst Should Know
A cursory look at 2021’s cyberattack statistics shows that organizations need the help of trained, certified security operations center (SOC) analysts who know how to effectively use the latest tools and techniques, including security information and event management (SIEM) platforms.
Take a look at the following data recently published by TechJury (Bulao, 2022):
- Malicious actors on average introduce 300,000 pieces of new malware each day.
- Ransomware cases grew by 150% in 2020 compared with the previous year.
- By 2021, a business was hit by ransomware every 11 seconds, compared with every 40 seconds back in 2017—an increase of approximately 360%.
- Approximately 94% of malware infections come from email, indicating that employees do not have the proper training to spot suspicious emails.
These trends highlight the value of SOC analysts for businesses, as an effective SOC can help mitigate the various cyberthreats faced by businesses today. To get started, let’s define SOC and SIEM before reviewing the most effective SIEM tools that SOC analysts can use to improve efficiency.
Defining SOC and SIEM
A SOC is a centralized department within an organization or data center that consists of security analysts, who use a variety of processes, tools, and technologies to monitor and improve the organization’s cybersecurity infrastructure (LogDNA, 2022).
“SIEM” refers to a specific management tool that SOC analysts and other cybersecurity professionals use. A SIEM platform typically includes a range of tools that aid SOC professionals, including:
- Forensic tools for investigating cyberattacks
- Threat hunting features to locate vulnerabilities
- Threat intelligence and security analytics features
- Advanced analytics visualization
The core difference is that SOC refers to an entire centralized department, including SOC analysts and their processes and tools, whereas SIEM refers to specific software used by a SOC analyst or team. SIEM platforms facilitate a comprehensive approach to cybersecurity by giving SOCs the ability to monitor data in real time and establish security policies that improve overall network safety.
To avoid confusion, it’s worth noting that the abbreviation “SOC” has two meanings. In addition to the definition of SOC outlined above, SOC can also refer to System and Organization Controls, a set of compliance standards established by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (Imperva, 2022). SOC auditing helps ensure that all institutions using financial data employ methods to keep that data secure.
The Top SIEM Tools for SOC Analysts
SOC analysts need a broad set of tools to diagnose potential vulnerabilities, proactively secure networks, and find innovative solutions for evolving malware threats.
Splunk pulls information from all aspects of a network, making it easier for SOC analysts to locate pertinent data and act quickly in on-site, cloud, and hybrid database environments (Splunk, 2022). When an anomalous event occurs that suggests a potential breach, SOC analysts will have easy and efficient access to database information so they can respond appropriately.
2. SolarWinds Security Event Manager
SolarWinds’ Security Event Manager provides SOC analysts with a tool that improves security through advanced threat identification, forensic analysis, and automated incident responses (SolarWinds, 2019). In addition to offering an intuitive dashboard, the Security Event Manager integrates with many compliance reporting tools to aid businesses that must conform to HIPAA, PCI DSS, and other regulations.
LogRhythm’s SIEM platform offers a reliable way to improve an organization’s security posture in light of challenges associated with the rise in remote work and cloud migration (LogRhythm, 2022). LogRhythm applies a zero-trust model while optimizing security infrastructures against emerging cybersecurity threats. LogRhythm provides additional training that helps all types of IT professionals use its features correctly.
4. Trellix Platform
The Trellix platform provides real-time visibility into system activity. The tool allows SOC analysts to see real-time system, network, application, and database activity and performance (Trellix, 2022). When fully integrated into a system, analysts can examine specific events to identify potential issues, from suspicious activity to slow speeds. Trellix users can also add content packs to customize the tool for relevant industry compliance regulations.
5. AlienVault OSSIM
AlienVault OSSIM is an open-source SIEM product by AT&T designed to help security professionals in asset discovery, assessing vulnerabilities, intrusion detection, behavior monitoring, and SIEM event correlation (AT&T Business, 2020).
Secure Your Future as a SOC Analyst with EC-Council
EC-Council excels at preparing IT professionals at all experience levels to become certified SOC analysts through the Certified SOC Analyst (C|SA) program. The 3-day program covers SIEM deployment, advanced incident detection, how to respond to a range of real incidents, and more.
EC-Council provides applicants with two pathways for achieving their C|SA certification. The first option is to sign up for an approved EC-Council training, which covers everything candidates need to know for the certification exam. Learners can choose between self-study or instructor-led training, offered in online and in-person formats. Eligible professionals who can prove they have at least 1 year of experience in a field related to information security also have the option to skip directly to taking the exam.
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AT&T Business. (2020). AlienVault OSSIM. https://cybersecurity.att.com/products/ossim
Bulao, J. (2022, March 14). How many cyber attacks happen per day in 2022? TechJury. https://techjury.net/blog/how-many-cyber-attacks-per-day/
Imperva. (2022, February 10). SOC 2 compliance. https://www.imperva.com/learn/data-security/soc-2-compliance/
LogDNA. (2022, March 25). What is the difference between SIEM and SOC. https://www.logdna.com/learn-observability/what-is-the-difference-between-siem-and-soc
LogRhythm. (2020, February 12). SIEM platform & security operations center services. https://logrhythm.com/
SolarWinds. (2019, December 9). Security event manager. https://www.solarwinds.com/security-event-manager
Splunk. (2022, March 15). Splunk: The data platform for the hybrid world. https://www.splunk.com/
Trellix. (2022, January 12). Trellix platform. https://www.trellix.com/en-us/products/trellix-platform.html