Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) and Security Breaches

Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) and Security Breaches

Data security has become more important than ever. Information is more valuable than money to today’s attackers, and they will exploit any chink in your armor in their drive to access it. IT companies need a suite of tools and techniques to help avoid security events and help businesses recover from breaches. Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) is a vital aspect of that ability.

What Is SIEM?

SIEM is not a single thing. Rather, it’s a collection of tools, processes, services, and techniques that work together to provide real-time visibility into a businesses’ information security systems. It can also deliver event log management with multiple streams of data, correlate events from different streams to enhance raw information, and offer automatic security event notifications.

What Does SIEM Do?

System Information and Event Management is a combination of two specific IT initiatives. The first, security information management, acts as a recorder. It collects information from the various streams of data and records them, making this information available for later analysis. It also reports any security events.

The second is security event management (SEM), which is a more active technology responsible for real-time monitoring across the entire system. It also helps connect the dots when multiple security events are present and alerts administrators about critical concerns.

What Does the Security Information and Event Management Process Look Like?

While SIEM is complex, it’s possible to break down the process followed to better understand how everything works. It’s a four-step process that begins with data collection and ends with notifications about events.

  1. The first step is data collection. All information related to security, whether from a firewall, OS, antivirus software, or another source, is captured and recorded. Even information from legacy systems can be captured, processed, filtered, and then directed into the SIEM tool.
  2. The SIEM administrator creates a behavioral profile that determines what happens during normal operations, as well as during specific types of security events. This profile will dictate what reports, alerts, and rules are in place, and should be customized to the business’s unique needs, requirements, and risks.
  3. The next step is data consolidation and correlation. Basically, the SIEM tool gathers all the data together and begins to make sense of it, connecting the dots between actions and activities, to gain a more accurate image of the threat situation.
  4. Finally, the SIEM tool alerts administrators when an event or series of events occurs. Administrators can then take active steps.

SIEM Supports PCI DSS Compliance

For any organization processing consumer credit cards, PCI DSS compliance is essential. A SIEM tool can help you become compliant by addressing concerns about unauthorized network connection detection, serving for insecure protocols, and inspecting traffic flows across a DMZ.

Exploring SIEM Tools

You’ll find many different SIEM tools on the market today — WCA Technologies recommends Vijilan, a market leader.

Security Information and Event Management tools deliver critical capabilities and enhance information security in vital ways. Contact WCA for more information or to schedule an assessment.