Today’s enterprises face rapidly evolving threats to their cybersecurity at a moment in which they rely on their IT infrastructure more than ever. In fact, research from IDC indicates enterprise spending on the technology that enables digital transformation will have topped $1 trillion in 2018, an increase of 16.8% over the previous year. At the same time, the total global cost of cybercrime is expected to exceed a record $2 trillion this year, suggesting that those technologies driving digital transformations are at risk.
What’s more, the cost of suffering from a cyberattack has only increased. According to the Ponemon Institute and IBM Security, the average total cost of a data breach to companies around the world rose 6.4% in 2018 to $3.86 million. Clearly, enterprises can ill afford to leave themselves vulnerable to technologically advanced bad actors.
To that end, it’s incumbent upon you and your IT team to research, deploy, and manage cybersecurity solutions that can keep your systems, networks, and sensitive information secure. Regardless of your industry, the size of your business, or the scope of your team, protecting your organization from malicious online activity—activity that can cost enterprises millions of dollars—should be one of your top priorities.
For many organizations, security information and event management (SIEM) offers the flexibility needed to deploy over complex digital environments, and the sophistication to effectively manage a wide range of threats. Indeed, SIEM tools collect, store, and analyze security information from across your organization in order to alert IT professionals to ongoing attacks and comb through log data to identify irregularities.
As SIEM tools become more popular, however—the market for SIEM tools is expected to hit almost $6 billion by 2021—businesses that have integrated cloud computing into their operation need to ensure their cybersecurity platforms can account for this technology. If you and your team rely on the cloud at multiple levels of your business, it’s important that you learn more about cloud-based SIEM solutions.
What is a SIEM solution?
A SIEM solution combines two types of cybersecurity technology, security information management (SIM) and security event management (SEM). SIM sifts through log data in order to monitor for irregularities, which are identified based on rules set by the SIEM provider and your IT team. SEM analyzes data in real time in order to monitor for threats to your digital environment, generating warnings for IT professionals who can then evaluate those threats.
By making SIM and SEM work in concert with one another, SIEM tools safeguard organizations against ongoing attacks while simultaneously monitoring for issues in log data. Such platforms provide end-to-end visibility over data gathered from a range of cybersecurity assets, including IoT devices, computer applications, firewalls, and antivirus software. By gathering this information and consolidating it in virtualized, user-friendly dashboards, SIEM tools make it possible for IT professionals to manage widespread, complex digital environments that would be too unwieldy to monitor and protect on their own. Furthermore, as enterprises invest further in cloud infrastructure and rely on off-site SaaS, SIEM providers are adapting their products to account for the changing nature of the digital environments they aim to protect.
With its balance of SIM and SEM and its capacity for integration with emerging capabilities, SIEM technology makes an effective solution to the cybersecurity needs of enterprises of varying sizes. With that said, there are considerations that IT teams need to take into account. For instance, IT professionals will need to set some of the rules that SIEM tools use to analyze information and identify potential issues in log data. Those rules will change from one organization to the next, but it’s important to get them right so your SIEM platform doesn’t generate too many false positives and burn out your team.
What is SIEM as a service?
While it is possible to install a SIEM tool on-site, you can conveniently access SIEM as a service via the cloud. This means that the key functions of SIEM technology—SIM, SEM, and virtualization allowing for intuitive user control—are accessed via cloud computing technology from an off-site location.
With cloud SIEM as a managed service, businesses have access to those tools and insight into their cybersecurity profile, but the managed services provider (MSP) controls the SIEM as a service function from a separate location, updating the business as necessary on security vulnerabilities.
What are the advantages of cloud-based SIEM?
For businesses, cloud SIEM tools mean convenience. For starters, accessing SIEM over the cloud can get SIEM capabilities up and running on a shorter timeline. When businesses install SIEM on-site, there can be a longer IT onboarding process before full operational status. By choosing to access SIEM as a service, businesses could be enjoying the benefits of this technology more quickly.
This also speaks to the shortage of qualified IT staff available to enterprises. With two-thirds of employers reporting a skills shortage among available technology professionals, IT departments need to contend with increasingly sophisticated threats with fewer experts available to help. Cloud-based SIEM can provide a solution, as MSPs can relieve organizations of the time and responsibility around their cybersecurity goals while ensuring expertise and compliance.
While on-site SIEM tools are convenient and offer direct control, they may be difficult to scale as a business grows. Indeed, because SIEM technology connects cybersecurity assets from across an organization into a central platform, businesses would need to update that technology every time they add new assets, change firewall or antivirus settings, or integrate new technology. With cloud SIEM as a service, however, MSPs can scale conveniently and as needed, handling updates and staying on top of emerging capabilities.
Finally, a cloud SIEM solution can cut costs for businesses. While on-site SIEM tools may require investment in certain hardware-software combinations, enterprises eventually need to update those assets as they become outdated. By opting for SIEM as a service, however, a business can transition from a capital expenditure model to an operational expense framework. Meanwhile, MSPs can invest in hardware and platforms that scale with and across their clients.
What cloud-based SIEM solutions does SolarWinds offer?
For an MSP investing in cloud-based SIEM solutions, you’ll want to offer your clients a reputable and reliable service. With the industry-leading N-able Threat Monitor platform, you can monitor, respond, and report security threats as they happen—and before they wreak havoc across your clients’ systems and networks.
With Threat Monitor, SolarWinds offers MSPs an intelligent approach to threat monitoring. This means that, as a cloud service, Threat Monitor provides convenient, scalable access to a wide range of next-generation SIEM capabilities.
For instance, a central dashboard provides intuitive insights into a cybersecurity profile. From there, you can easily collect log information from disparate sources and assess the intent and severity of potential threats in a way that puts you in control. Threat Monitor evaluates these threats from multiple origin points, including IP and Domain Reputation databases, ensuring that you’re protected against known and unknown security threats.
If you’re working on a moderately sized team, Threat Monitor can help you be sure that nothing falls through the cracks. You’ll be able to normalize logs from within your client’s ecosystem and analyze them against multiple sources of threat intelligence, thus allowing you to spend less time looking through dense logs and more time developing an understanding of your vulnerabilities.
For MSPs managing a larger organization’s cybersecurity defenses, Threat Monitor can manage threats in tandem with you and save your attention for truly pressing issues. For instance, Threat Monitor can automate intelligent responses to detected threats that resolve them without requiring constant touch. When you’re working in an enterprise with widespread systems and networks, this level of prioritization is key.
No matter what type of clients you have, it’s important that they have a SIEM solution. For many enterprises, managed cloud-based solutions are an appropriate and effective choice, allowing you to remotely guard against threats, identify vulnerabilities, and protect clients from bad actors.
Click here to find out how SolarWinds Threat Monitor can help you monitor, respond, and report security threats as they happen