SecurityBrief Australia logo
Australia's leading source of cybersecurity and cyber-attack news
Story image

Leveraging a new MSSP/MDR SOC contract to build an intelligence practice

By Contributor
Thu 26 Aug 2021

Article by ThreatQuotient APJC regional director Anthony Stitt.
 

Cyber threat intelligence (CTI) is now being used by organisations of all sizes across industries and geographies. 85% of respondents to the 2021 SANS CTI Survey report they are producing or consuming intelligence, with the remaining 15% planning to. 

Notably, for the first time, the number of respondents without plans to consume or produce intelligence was 0%, down from 5.5% in 2020. But there is still much work to be done. 

Months on from the SolarWinds Orion security breach...: 

  • 63% of organisations surveyed remain highly concerned about data security
  • 60% of those directly impacted are still trying to determine if they were breached
  • 16% of organisations are wondering if they were even impacted. 

Few organisations have matured their security operations (SecOps) to the point where they have integrated a complete CTI practice. 

Many organisations rely on managed security service providers (MSSPs) or managed detection and response (MDR) for the detection component of their SecOps, setting up processes and serving as tier-1 and tier-2 SOC analysts. 

SOC contracts are generally signed for a minimum three-year period. While these contracts may specify the need for continuous enhancement, it can be difficult to make significant changes and update SLAs once the contract is in place. 

This limitation has become problematic given the past year of disruptions. Almost 20% of survey respondents told SANS the pandemic has changed how they use threat intelligence due to a rise in phishing, ransomware attacks and work-from-home threats. 

The recent rise of worldwide supply chain attacks has been a game-changer for defenders. Strategic shifts to mature SecOps by implementing a CTI practice are difficult to achieve whilst outside a contract renewal window. That’s why customers must think ahead about their SecOps maturity needs and work with their MSSP/MDR at contract renewal to synchronise SecOps process evolutions. 

Here are the keys to global project success when leveraging a SOC MSSP/MDR contract process. 
 

Don’t let the window close: moving from reactive to anticipatory

Disruptions are a fact of life, and threat actors will continue to take advantage of them. A CTI platform allows for an anticipatory approach by profiling both the attack and attackers who rapidly change their tools, techniques, and procedures (TTPs) to evade defensive technologies. 

With intelligence-based workflows, security operators can use these insights into adversaries to enrich internal surveillance, focusing on threats and minimising noise or false positives. 

Security teams can strengthen defences by automatically sending relevant threat intelligence directly to the sensor grid, SIEM, logs, and ticketing systems, to proactively protect the organisation from future threats. In such a set-up, the customer SecOps teams create detection policies in real-time and actively collaborate with the MSSP/MDR to perform crisis management when a new threat appears.
 

CTI serves and is fed by all four functions of your SecOps

Security operations consist of four main functions: the defence team, risk management, the SOC for detection, and the incident response team. 

With a CTI platform, teams can leverage threat intelligence across these functions to understand your adversaries and their tactics, techniques, and procedures. 

As tools and teams gather additional threat data, they can feed that information into the CTI platform to create an organisational memory — meaning intelligence is automatically re-evaluated and reprioritised based on this new information. This enables CTI practice to continue improving by leveraging information that helps accelerate the right actions and allows real threat data-driven orchestration across all SecOps tools. 
 

A CTI practice requires some modifications to all four functions, including the SOC MSSP/MDR contract

When introducing a CTI practice into the core of security operations, every function must adapt to work with a CTI platform to benefit from collaboration and communication (SIEM, SOAR, EDR, etc.). 

Some service providers can accelerate the process because they offer a CTI capability as part of their practice. However, for others, more work needs to be done to their processes and SLAs to ensure successful onboarding of a CTI platform. 

Either way, modifications are more straightforward when initiated at contract time. Otherwise, the risk of missing out on the full value of a CTI practice grows.
 

The CTI practice can be activated when you’re ready

MSSP/MDR’s that already have a CTI practice offering can provide a CTI platform, and over time, transfer the skills to run the CTI practice to the team. If a service provider continues to run the CTI practice on behalf of the organisation, the threat memory will remain on the organisation’s site for reuse.

This is the implementation model seen most in the past 12 months, but it’s early days and service providers are working together with their customer SecOps teams to optimise the path forward. If the MSSP/MDR doesn’t have a CTI practice offering, look for a CTI platform that leverages a flexible data model and supports open intelligence sharing standards to ensure connectivity and communication. The goal is to be ‘CTI practice ready’.

The escalation of cyber-attacks over the last few months has shown there’s no time to waste in maturing SecOps programs. A reactive security posture is not a viable option. Instead, teams must leverage threat intelligence throughout their security operations to understand adversaries, strengthen defences, and accelerate detection and response by turning SecOps into an anticipatory program. 

It is important to work with the SOC MSSP/MDR partner at contract time to remain in control of the timeline and avoid being forced to wait another three years for the next contract negotiation cycle to gain the full value of a CTI practice and platform.

Related stories
Top stories
Story image
Ransomware
Examining the future of ransomware threats with Vectra’s CTO
As customers' valuable data move to the cloud, so will ransomware. What is the current landscape and what do we need to know?
Story image
Apple
Your tools, your choice: why allow employees to choose their own devices?
Jamf Australia says giving your team the freedom to work with their digital device of choice could help to attract and retain top talent in a tight labour market.
Story image
Security Information and Event Management (SIEM)
LogRhythm updates SIEM Platform with latest innovations
LogRhythm has announced the launch of version 7.9 of the LogRhythm SIEM Platform and updates to LogRhythm NDR and LogRhythm UEBA.
Story image
Document Management
NZ's FileInvite raises $10M in latest investment round
FileInvite has raised $10 million in Series A investment to fast-forward the extinction of email for requesting and collecting documents online.
Story image
Artificial Intelligence
Juniper study reveals top AI trends in APAC region
Juniper's research shows an increase in enterprise artificial intelligence adoption over the last 12 months is yielding tangible benefits to organisations.
Story image
Internet of Things
ManageEngine wins big in IDC MarketScape assessment
ManageEngine's Endpoint Central service has been recognised as a leader by IDC MarketScape in several categories including Internet of Things device deployments and UEM software for SMEs.
Story image
Artificial Intelligence
Vectra AI named as AWS security competency partner
Threat detection and response company Vectra AI has announced that it has become an Amazon Web Services Security Competency Partner.
Story image
Cybersecurity
FIDO Alliance releases guidelines for optimising UX with FIDO Security Keys
The new guidelines aim to accelerate multi-factor authentication deployment and adoption with FIDO security keys.
Story image
Apple
Jamf introduces new content filtering solution for education providers
Jamf has announced the launch of Jamf Safe Internet, a new offering that looks to deliver a safe online experience to students while offering better management options for admins.
Story image
HP Inc
Firmware attacks significant threat in age of hybrid work
Changing workforce dynamics are creating new challenges for IT teams around firmware security, according to new research.
Story image
Cloudera
Overcoming hybrid and multi-cloud challenges to drive innovation
Driven by improvements in technology, financial services companies have advanced both internal and external systems and processes, with the likes of digitisation, personalisation and risk management redefining the industry.
Story image
Oracle Cloud
Commvault, Oracle to deliver Metallic Data Management as a Service
"We are excited to partner with Commvault and enable our customers to restore and recover their most mission-critical cloud data."
Story image
Cyber Criminal
Identity and access: the fight is on
Blue team defenders are used to protecting our data, applications, and users with access controls and other security mechanisms, which is why attacks like this are especially challenging when they target identity and access control systems.
Story image
Solutions
Progress launches latest version of network visibility solution
In Flowmon 12 network solution, Progress has expanded its support for public cloud provider flow log monitoring and launched new features.
Story image
Trend Micro
5G network projects driven by improving security and privacy
Trend Micro's new study reveals the prospect of improved security and privacy capabilities are the main motivations behind private 5G wireless network projects.
Story image
Documentation
Adobe study finds lack of digital trust and utilisation in Australian Government agencies
New research commissioned by Adobe has revealed a significant lack of digital trust within Australian Government departments, along with the continued underutilisation of key digital processes.
Story image
Tech job moves
Tech job moves - Bitdefender, Cohesity, Fortinet & MODIFI
We round up all job appointments from June 27-30, 2022, in one place to keep you updated with the latest from across the tech industries.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Video: 10 Minute IT Jams - An update from CrowdStrike
Scott Jarkoff joins us today to discuss current trends in the cyber threat landscape, and the reporting work CrowdStrike is doing to prevent further cyber harm.
Story image
API
Industry-first comprehensive risk-based API security enhances protection
Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) have become a crucial part of operating web and mobile application businesses and are causing significant economic growth in the digital sector.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Security driving customer identity & access management adoption
"CIAM allows businesses to embed a secure identity layer into their consumer and SaaS applications, facilitating secure, seamless end user experiences."
Story image
Cybersecurity
Delinea’s Joseph Carson recognised with OnCon Icon Award
Delinea chief security scientist and advisory CISO Joseph Carson has been recognised as a Top 50 Information Security Professional in the 2022 OnCon Icon Awards.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Without trust, your security team is dead in the water
The rise of cyberattacks has increased the need for sound security that works across any type of business, but with any change, buy-in is essential. Airwallex explains why.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Email threats spike 101%, remains a top attack vector
"Each year we see innovation in the threat landscape, but each year email remains a major threat to organisations."
Story image
Enterprise Resource Planning / ERP
Five ways your ERP is letting you down and why it's time for a change
Wiise explains while moving to a new system may seem daunting, the truth is that legacy systems could be holding your business back.
Story image
Vendor
Forescout reveals top vulnerabilities impacting OT vendors
Forescout’s Vedere Labs has disclosed OT: ICEFALL, naming 56 vulnerabilities affecting devices from 10 operational technology vendors.
Story image
Malware
Colt launches new SASE Gateway solution with Versa
Colt Technology Services’ customers now have access to an integrated full SASE solution that brings together SD WAN and SSE features.
Story image
Gartner
Gartner's top recommendations for security leaders
"Leaders now recognise that major disruption is only one crisis away. We can’t control it, but we can evolve our thinking, philosophy, program and architecture.”
Story image
Cybersecurity
Tech and data’s role in the changing face of compliance
Accenture's study found that 93% of respondents agree or strongly agree new technologies such as AI and cloud make compliance easier.
Story image
Compliance
Stock security features inadequate in face of rising risk
"Organisations must proactively find ways of identifying unseen vulnerabilities and should take a diligent, holistic approach to cybersecurity."
PwC
WSLHD and PwC’s Consulting Business came together to solve through the challenges of COVID-19. A model of care was developed to the NSW Health Agency for Clinical Innovation guidelines with new technology platforms and an entirely new workforce.
Link image
Story image
Compliance
SentinelOne integrates with Torq to empower security teams
"With Torq, security teams can extend the power of SentinelOne to systems across the organisation to benefit from a proactive security posture.”
Story image
Media
Registrations for the W.Media Sydney Cloud and Datacenter Convention 2022 now open
Are you a C-Level executive looking to enhance your knowledge in the cloud and data center space in order to get the best results for your company?
Story image
SaaS
Ping Identity appoints Deloitte Australia as a partner
Ping Identity has appointed Deloitte Australia as a Consulting Technology Partner, uniting its offerings with the company's consulting services.
Story image
Ransomware
Businesses unprepared to defend against ransomware attacks
Ransomware attacks continue to impact organisations worldwide with high costs, but businesses are still largely unprepared.
Story image
Digital Fingerprint
Decline in counterfeit cherries after digital fingerprinting
Reid Fruits says there’s been a dramatic decline in counterfeit products for its cherries over the past three export seasons to Asia because of digital fingerprinting.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Palo Alto Networks' cloud security platform receives IRAP assessment
"We provide help protect all forms of compute, cloud native services and access to data within public and private sectors."
Story image
Payroll
How New South Wales state departments achieved cloud migration success
State departments in New South Wales are heading to the cloud to achieve better workflow solutions, and one company is paving the way for their success.
Story image
Research
New study reveals 51% of employees using unauthorised apps
The research shows that 92% of employees and managers in large enterprises want full control over applications, but they don't have it.
Story image
Digital Transformation
What CISOs think about cyber security, visibility and cloud
Seeking to uncover the minds of CISOs and CIOs across Asia Pacific, my company recently asked Frost & Sullivan to take a snapshot of cloud adoption behaviour in the region.
Story image
Training
Barracuda customises training to fit ACSC Essential Eight
Barracuda has announced that its Security Awareness Training now provides a customised training curriculum in line with the Australian Cyber Security Centre’s (ACSC) Essential Eight.
Story image
Cybersecurity
How organisations can mitigate IoT and IIoT security risks
IoT and IIoT come with inherent risks because they are often deployed faster than they can be secured, putting organisations in danger of cyber threats. Here are tips on how to mitigate those risks.
Story image
Cybersecurity
Zscaler launches co-located data centres in Canberra and Auckland
The investment will offer public and private sector enterprises greater resilience in support of their zero trust cybersecurity posture.
Story image
MSP
Video: 10 Minute IT Jams - An update from CyberArk
Olly Stimpson joins us today to discuss the importance of MSP programmes and how MSP partners are experiencing success with CyberArk.
PwC
PwC's Consulting Business and PwC's Indigenous Consulting are proud to play an important role in helping Australian Indigenous Mentoring Experience build IMAGI-NATION, a free online university for marginalised communities around the world.
Link image