What is Security Orchestration, Automation and Response (SOAR)?

As cyber threats continue to grow in volume and sophistication, security teams face the challenge of handling thousands of alerts each and every day. To be able to prioritise these alerts and respond effectively, it’s vital for every business to develop an efficient approach to their security operations. This is where Security Orchestration, Automation, and Response (SOAR) may benefit your business. SOAR is transforming how security operations teams manage, analyse and respond to security incidents, enhancing the speed, efficiency and effectiveness of the entire process.

What is Security Orchestration, Automation and Response (SOAR)

Security Orchestration, Automation, and Response (SOAR) is a comprehensive approach to cyber security that integrates the coordination of security processes, automation of routine tasks, and timely response to incidents. SOAR platforms streamline and connect disparate security tools, combining alerts from SIEM systems and other security technologies and enabling seamless information sharing and workflow automation. By orchestrating these tools, SOAR enhances incident response capabilities, accelerates decision-making, and reduces manual intervention.

How Does SOAR Work?

SOAR functions by seamlessly integrating disparate cyber security tools, automating routine tasks, and orchestrating a cohesive response to security incidents. As the name suggests, there are three key elements to SOAR:

  1. Orchestration - ensuring the coordination of actions across various security tools and teams, creating a streamlined workflow and unified defence strategy.
  2. Automation - scripting repetitive security tasks, allowing for quicker detection and response to threats.
  3. Response - the execution of predefined actions for known threats and the ability to facilitate human decision-making in complex scenarios.

Ultimately, SOAR works to enhance the speed, efficiency, and effectiveness of the entire security operations process and thereby ensure that threats are dealt with in a timely and coordinated manner.

What Are the Differences Between SOAR and SIEM?

Security Orchestration, Automation, and Response (SOAR) and Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) are complementary but distinct cyber security technologies. While they both detect security issues, collect data and deal with notifications, there are significant differences between them:

  • SIEM focuses on log and event data collection, analysis, and correlation to identify potential security incidents. It centralises data from various sources to provide a comprehensive view of an organisation's security posture. 
  • SOAR extends beyond analysis to orchestrate and automate responses to security incidents, integrating and coordinating disparate security tools, streamlining workflows and automating routine tasks. It enhances incident response by executing predefined actions and facilitating human decision-making.

In short, SIEM is primarily a monitoring and alerting system, while SOAR is a more comprehensive solution for incident response.

What Are the Benefits of Having SOAR?

Implementing Security Orchestration, Automation, and Response (SOAR) provides several key benefits for businesses:

  • Efficiency and Time Savings - SOAR automates routine and time-consuming security tasks, enabling faster incident detection, analysis, and response. 
  • Improved Incident Response - by orchestrating the actions of various security tools, SOAR ensures a coordinated and effective response to security incidents.
  • Enhanced Collaboration and Communication - SOAR integrates disparate security technologies and facilitates seamless communication between different teams.
  • Consistency and Standardisation - automated playbooks ensure consistent and standardised responses to security incidents. 
  • Scalability - by automating manual tasks, SOAR can handle a larger volume of alerts and incidents and allows businesses to effectively scale their cyber security efforts.
  • Advanced Threat Intelligence - SOAR platforms can integrate threat intelligence feeds from a wider array of tools and systems, delivering more context and providing real-time information about emerging threats.
  • Metrics and Reporting - SOAR platforms offer reporting and analytics capabilities, providing insights into security incidents, response times, and overall cyber security performance.

In summary, SOAR contributes to a more efficient, effective, and collaborative cyber security framework, addressing the challenges posed by the evolving threat landscape.

Could SOAR Help Your Business?

SOAR is an incredibly valuable tool that minimises the impact of security incidents while maximising the value of your existing security investments. With SOAR, you can enhance your cyber security efforts by automating tasks, streamlining incident response, and fostering collaboration among security teams and tools. This results in improved efficiency, faster threat detection, and a more robust defence against cyber threats.

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