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SOAR Platforms Explained: How to Consolidate Complex Security Workflows

Enterprise security leaders are increasingly relying on SOAR solutions to improve the speed and efficiency of detection and response tasks. 

The larger and more complex an organization becomes, the more time and energy it must spend on daily security operations. As the enterprise grows, its security team’s ability to process alerts, conduct incident investigations, and respond to unauthorized activity must become more efficient. 

This is a steep challenge for growing organizations for a few reasons: 

  • According to Anomali, the average enterprise deploys more than 130 different security tools. 
  • Security alerts can grow at an exponential rate when new business units come online, and it’s not always possible to streamline that flow of data from the very start.  
  • The industry-wide cybersecurity talent gap makes it unfeasible to hire new analysts to perform manual tasks at scale. 
  • Security leaders have limited visibility over their tools, datasets, and environments. 

Taken altogether, it’s easy to see why security performance may suffer as its risk profile expands. Security orchestration, automation, and response (SOAR) platforms have evolved out of the need to make diverse toolsets work together in a scalable, integrated way. 

What Exactly does SOAR Do? 

SOAR platforms allow enterprise security teams to filter out the most time-consuming elements of the security operations workflow. Freeing security professionals from the daily tasks that take up the most time and resources enables faster, more comprehensive incident response. 

On a more granular level, SOAR platforms improve the enterprise security posture in seven ways. They offer: 

  • Better integration of diverse toolsets. SOAR allows security teams to connect all their security solutions into a single console, guaranteeing compatibility even among tools from different vendors. 
  • A single point of reference for security performance. The ability to quickly see security performance data through a single dashboard makes it much simpler to investigate and remediate security incidents. 
  • Faster and more reliable incident response. SOAR platforms reduce key performance indicators like mean time to detect (MTTD) and mean time to respond (MTTR). 
  • Fewer false positives and less repetition in daily operations. SOAR technology automates some of the most time-consuming tasks that security professionals must undertake daily. 
  • Improved intelligence and data validation. By collecting and validating data from threat intelligence feeds, firewalls, SIEM platforms, and more, SOAR solutions give security teams abundant context for drawing conclusions from incident investigations. 
  • Greater visibility, reporting, and communication. Having all security operations and activities in a single location makes it easy for security leaders to navigate their security posture and report to executives and stakeholders.  
  • Better decision-making at the executive level. The ability to comb through a wealth of pre-categorized contextual data enables leaders to accurately identify points of improvement in the organization’s security posture. 

Does Every Organization Need a SOAR Platform? 

With enormous tech stacks and constantly expanding attack surfaces, large enterprises have a lot to gain from implementing SOAR technology. The more diverse and fragmented an organization’s cybersecurity toolset is, the more value this approach will unlock. 


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The decision can be a bit more complex for small and mid-sized businesses. An organization with no more than a dozen tools in its cybersecurity tech stack may not see immediate value from implementing a full-scale SOAR solution. However, it could represent a valid use of capital for fast-growing, security-conscious leaders who want to lay down an efficient security framework early on. 

In general, SOAR technology makes the most sense for organizations with a typical six-layer enterprise tech stack consisting of networking, storage, physical servers, virtualization, management, and application layers. That includes smaller businesses that outsource one or more layers to managed service providers, since supply chain attacks can target vulnerabilities specific to those connections. 

Remote work is another key use case for SOAR implementation. Any organization with a highly distributed workforce must deploy a solution for collecting, analyzing, and responding to incident data relating to remote employee activity. 

Discover how your organization can benefit from implementing SOAR technology, and what kind of deployment best suits your size, budget, and cybersecurity risk profile.

 

Contact a Castra expert and find out what your security tech stack is missing.