When strategizing about methods of orchestration and automation, the industry often focuses on the needs of the traditional security operations center (SOC). However, coming up with solutions for security orchestration for MSSPs is of equal importance.
MSSPs can suffer from some of the same issues as SOCs: the shortage of manpower, the tidal wave of daily alerts, and the long list of regular, menial tasks that must be accomplished for any client’s security needs. Of course, these challenges can be exponential for MSSPs, since they cater to the needs of multiple companies.
Orchestration & Automation: Key to Success for MSSPs
Security orchestration and automation for MSSPs alleviates these challenges and makes the process run effectively and efficiently. Automation and orchestration methods impact MSSPs in several important ways.
Enables response to low level tasks, while freeing analysts for higher value
Automation streamlines tasks and frees up analysts for work that requires deeper human analysis. By implementing operational standardization through automated systems, teams of human analysts of an MSSP are then free to be more innovative.
By streamlining repetitive tasks through cybertech automation, human analysts can more deeply focus their efforts on more complex problems. The automation element is particularly important from an ROI point of view. More automation means less day-to-day investment on standard tasks, and more innovation means more unique solutions to offer customers.
Security automation accelerates the enrichment process to provide the rapid context necessary to triage the barrage of alerts hitting an MSSP. This allows for the most accurate cyber security response as quickly as possible.
Categorizing threats is vital for triggering the correct response from an MSSP in any given scenario. This includes being able to quickly know which assets are at risk from a given threat, as well as the urgency in alerting the client (“Should I wake the CEO up in the middle of the night, or can it wait till tomorrow?”). The data grouping enabled by automation also facilitates deduplication, which in turn reduces noise caused by alerts. This de-cluttering of the environment helps the MSSP operate with more clarity, accuracy, and efficiency.
One of the most accurate ways of measuring MSSP performance is its pace of mean time to detect, or MTTD. Integrating automation improves MTTD exponentially by shifting responsibilities for detection and alerts away from humans and, instead, to automation programs. In this way, MSSPs will increase the speed at which they detect threats, without requiring investment in additional manpower.
There are several ways in which orchestration allows MSSPs to operate more efficiently. One of its most important benefits is the unification of security tools. This trend, which is already being implemented by industry leaders, allows MSSPs to monitor clients and execute security operations on a common platform.
Using orchestration platforms that combine case management, analytics, and more under one umbrella, analysts can easily keep an eye on the various elements of client systems.
Context makes it easier for analysts to understand the relevance of any given danger. Metadata regarding a particular alert type, such as the time and place of a probe’s origins, is key to determining the actual threat level.
Orchestration deployed by an MSSP allows for the service provider to quickly and smoothly retrieve this metadata. This, in turn, gives analysts quick access to tools for assessing threats, shoring up triage of alerts and facilitating workflow overall.
Delivers Client Support
One responsibility of an MSSP is to manage the tasks of client SOCs. An MSSP must be able to deliver client support on how their SOC should address incident response, threat investigation, and even advise the client on how to collaborate with their own customers regarding security issues. Security orchestration gives an MSSP the framework for how to manage client SOCs from above and how to use the relevant incident response tools..
SOC orchestration also impacts MSSPs from the ROI perspective. With effective security orchestration, an MSSP can ensure maximum and efficient participation in security tasks by the client SOC. This means fewer resources invested by the MSSP on the procedures that are easily accomplished by on-site SOC analysts. Effective cooperation with clients is the aspect that best highlights the ROI benefits of security orchestration for MSSPs.
Scale, Productivity, and Customer Experience
At the end of the day, these three key areas reveal the impact of security and orchestration on MSSPs:
Scale - The ability to abstract customer technology environments to grow an MSSP’s business with optimum efficiency.
Productivity - Driving efficiency and effectiveness at the analyst level throughout the threat management and response process.
Customer experience - Providing greater visibility and confidence in the delivery of security services to scrutinizing customers.