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Super Administrator • 03 Nov 2020

Building Incident Response Plan - SOAR Cybersecurity

Cybersecurity breaches are at a record high and the trends indicate that the situation is nowhere close to dying out. The past year has seen a surge of attacks on global business giants narrating their experiences and spelling out that expensive resources and tools are not enough to defend an organization from security threats.

(Bold, Italics) So, what is it that businesses need to do to ensure that their security system is immune to attacks?

According to experts, organization leaders should not chase only the industry best SOAR cybersecurity tools for incident management but also develop security awareness and drive best practices among the employees to create an environment that can mitigate any threat.

To do this correctly, an incident response plan is needed that encompasses all verticals of cybersecurity - an integrated security landscape, robust SOAR IT security platform and practical knowledge transfer about security cases to the key stakeholders of the company.

Do not have SOAR tools incorporated into your security infrastructure yet? Here are everything you need to know to get the process right - The Right Approach to Case Management - 5 SOAR Implementation Pitfalls to Avoid

In this article, let us talk about the steps that organizations need to undertake to build a robust incident response strategy using the SOAR platform.

(H2) How to Build an Incident Response Plan

(H3) STEP 1: Define, Analyze, Understand the Risk

This is the step where you create a risk assessment plan. Firstly, define the level of threat that would be treated as a security incident. Do alerts shared by your SOAR security platform about a possible intrusion qualify as an attack or do possible data breaches mean an incident? This will heavily depend on the size and resources of your organization.

Next, analyze the company’s IT system and networks. Find out which data should be classified as sensitive, which stakeholders of the company have access to them and what would be the possible gains of the attackers if they can hack into and steal the data. Understanding the importance of the data your organization has and where it is being stored can help you prepare for the best practices to shield them from breaches.

(H3) STEP 2: Gather a Trained Incident Response Team

No SOAR cybersecurity platform is efficient to its fullest degree without security analysts working round the clock to look into the alerts generated by the system. The SOAR platform is an excellent innovation that automates incident response processes for known threats easily without the intervention of the analysts.

Hence, all you need to do is appoint trained security professionals who are skilled enough to deal with a sudden unknown threat and work towards defending the data and systems that had been identified in the earlier step.

(H3) STEP 3: Create a Documentation Guide That Lists Down Response Severity

The SOAR cybersecurity platform when integrated with SIEM tools collects and analyzes a large amount of security data on a daily basis. Though it automates most of the simpler security cases, the analysts need to tackle threats that are unknown to the system. There are several types of security incidents that can occur - from phishing to ransomware to severe data breaches - not all incidents require the same level of response.

For this step, organizations need to make a chart specifying the number and designation of people from the response team who needs to attend to the issues based on the type and severity of the threat. Also, note down the resolution time that each threat might need. Maintain documentation for these guidelines to help the analysts when they need it in the event of a sudden incident.

(H3) STEP 4: Run Incident Response Plan Testing Drills With Key Stakeholders

In our previous blogs, we have discussed the importance of running drills periodically to test the efficacy of your SOAR tools and the preparedness of the key stakeholders if and when an incident occurs. Here is everything you need to know about the SOAR security incident response plan testing process - How to Test Your Incident Response Plan

The most vital point to note during the testing procedure is to document every step of the process. Starting from the response of the non-security teams to how the company leaders act in the event of a breach. This is the time to add to the incident response playbooks, the errors and gaps that have been seen in the security landscape and the subsequent reaction and processes used against them. Learn more about the lessons you can learn from security drills - 3 Lessons to Learn from Incident Response Tabletops.

(H3) STEP 5: Ready a Disaster Recovery Strategy

The aim of the first four steps of the process is to minimize the chances of getting to this last and final step. Not all security breaches will be serious enough or cause significant damage to reach this step if the security analysts, the CISOs and the company stakeholders work hard to cement a firm incident response plan following the aforementioned processes.

But in case, the SOAR cybersecurity platform and the entire plan fails against a sophisticated attack, having a disaster recovery plan in advance will certainly prove beneficial.

Enable relevant and frequent backups of sensitive data and migrate or copy such information to remote systems that do not share the same connection as the company network. This can ensure that the data stays intact, but it also has its own access management challenges. Troubleshooting such issues and training the non-security staff of the organization about security incidents is critical to ensuring an impenetrable infrastructure.

Concluding Notes

The SOAR platform is a great tool that is transforming security incident response processes using orchestration and automation technologies. But even the best of tools need to be complemented with the best strategies and practices to ensure a robust security landscape. With these 5 key steps carried out with absolute accuracy and efficiency, organizations can have tight control over their security systems, mitigating attacks and keeping their data and reputation secure.

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