Tailoring SIEM Deployment to Unique Client Requirements
Cyberattacks are increasing in severity and volume. In 2022 alone, more than 800,000 complaints were filed with the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3). The good news is that you can use a security information and event management (SIEM) system to detect a vast collection of threats, but it has to be tailored to your company's needs.
Everyone's network is different, as are the assets within it. Therefore, customizing SIEM deployment is critical. This blog post will guide you through tailoring SIEM deployments to your unique requirements.
Step 1: Requirements Identification
The initial assessment process involves gathering information regarding your industry and the kinds of attacks companies like yours must remember. This step includes understanding your business objectives, existing security infrastructure, and compliance requirements.
The initial assessment should focus on the data you need to protect. Each company has unique digital assets, even if they're operating in the same business sector.
For instance, two retail chains processing customer payment information may have dozens of data streams originating from devices in each retail location, including the company's headquarters. But one retailer may also have Internet of Things (IoT) devices in its fulfillment facility that the other retailer doesn't have. In this case, the SIEM connections would be different for each organization.
Step 2: Solution Selection and Evaluation
The process of selecting a suitable SIEM considers what you need in terms of scalability, integration capabilities, advanced analytics, the need for real-time data, and more. Your budget and long-term goals are also prime concerns.
For instance, suppose a manufacturer has a factory that produces microchips. It's also amid an acquisition deal that will add another facility to its portfolio. A SIEM solution that could only cover the first facility would be inadequate. An inventory of both the facilities' devices and security systems would be necessary before moving on to the next phase.
Step 3: SIEM Architecture Customization
Your SIEM architecture involves a complex web of data sources, logs, network devices, segments, and security tools. Also, because a SIEM solution is responsible for collecting and analyzing data, your existing security tools and systems must also be considered.
To illustrate, suppose you're a manufacturer, and your network is segmented into three parts: production, research and development (R&D), and corporate communications.
Your corporate communications segment is relatively straightforward, with an email and unified communications system. But your production and R&D segments consist of many devices separated into subnets, each protected by firewalls with different settings.
In this case, your SIEM architecture would need to collect data from each device and security tool in a way that prioritizes the threats that pose the most significant danger to your manufacturing processes.
Step 4: Security Data Collection and Integration
Collecting and integrating relevant security data into your SIEM involves gathering and putting the data into context. For instance, data from the R&D network segment would correlate with factors such as when it was generated, who created it, and the production facility that might benefit from it.
On the other hand, the data the SIEM collects from corporate communications may be filtered according to all those parameters: the device used to communicate, the IP addresses involved, and the geolocation data from each device.
Step 5: Rule Configuration and Alert Creation
Next, configure rules and alerts to notify your security operations center (SOC) or internal team of potential threats. These need to be well thought out. You don't want your security team to experience alert fatigue and miss critical, actionable warnings.
For example, some organizations may rely heavily on a customer web portal for processing e-commerce transactions. Therefore, they may prioritize alerts regarding distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks on web assets over emails with malicious attachments.
Step 6: Testing and Validation
The testing and validation phases are where the rubber meets the road. It's when you see if the SIEM architecture and the rules and alerts you set up in the previous step stop or flag threats as they should. This is a significant learning opportunity and may involve mock assaults to see how the system prioritizes and flags them.
You can also conduct a beta test on mock network assets, such as databases you fill with useless information. Or you may test your SIEM against data from applications in an isolated cloud environment that aren't connected to your business-critical servers.
Step 7: SIEM Deployment and Integration
Once the SIEM passes all the necessary testing and validation stages, it's time to deploy it. The deployment process will invariably involve integrating your SIEM with existing systems and devices. These may include:
• Endpoint detection systems
• Intrusion detection and prevention solutions
• Threat intelligence systems
• Vulnerability feeds
Your SIEM will also integrate with network devices that manage data flowing in and out of each business location and cloud-deployed asset.
Step 8: Continuous Monitoring and Management
To ensure your SIEM is working as intended, your in-house security team, an external SOC, or a combination of both, depending on your needs, must continually monitor it. Monitoring involves more than simply collecting SIEM reports. It's an active process in which security teams look for actionable alerts to mitigate potential threats.
Managing your SIEM centers around ensuring it's fully integrated and operating well no matter what gets added to, removed from, or changed in your network. Management also involves updating your SIEM software with the latest and greatest artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) capabilities.
Your SIEM deployment only locks in after a careful discovery process, architecture engineering, and testing phase. Once deployed, you must constantly monitor and update it to ensure it's alerting you to the most critical threats.
Ready to deploy a SIEM system that effectively protects your critical assets? The cybersecurity experts at GSI understand how to deploy a SIEM that considers your entire digital ecosystem and surfaces the most critical threat data.
Connect with GSI today for more information about your specific deployment approach.