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What is security analytics? An overview on the toolsets & business use cases

Mark Stone
What is security analytics? An overview on the toolsets, business use cases

Analytics plays a crucial role in almost every type of business and sector. Companies rely on analytics for revenue reporting, understanding customers, and optimizing network performance, among many others. As data plays an increasingly central role in our lives, the importance of analytics is skyrocketing.

For security, analytics is a key use case. Analytics can help businesses maintain visibility on their security posture — protecting their assets and avoiding devastating breaches and attacks. 

This article will look at how analytics function in a cybersecurity context, the main analytics tools for security, and the key use cases.

What does analytics mean in a cybersecurity context?

When it comes to cybersecurity, analytics is an effective way of gaining crucial insights into your organization’s security posture and maintaining that visibility over time. 

Analytics in cybersecurity offers numerous valuable benefits:

  • Detect threats quickly as soon as they appear
  • Analyze threats so you can establish the risk and determine the best course of action to take
  • Mitigate threats before they can develop and cause serious harm to your organization
  • Draw data from a wide range of sources like network logging, public cloud, SaaS audit logs, and EDR data
  • Automate a wide range of previously manual tasks, allowing your teams to free up time and focus on human-specific, business-critical work

What are the main types of analytics tools available for security?

Security information and event management (SIEM)

A security information and event management system (SIEM) is built to deal with security threats in real-time, as soon as they emerge. Whenever suspicious activity is flagged by any part of your network, your SIEM cross-references the event with its own set of rules and globally-available intelligence.

Behavioral analytics

What makes a threat stand out? Malicious activity looks different from normal activity, and your ability to notice these differences allows you to identify potential threats and take decisive action quickly. Behavioral analysis uses data, machine learning, and powerful analytics tools to hone in on suspicious behavior as soon as it appears.

External threat intelligence

While the risk of insider threats should not be overlooked, most perils come from outside your organization. Hacks, ransomware, malware, DDoS, and phishing are all prominent types of external threats. Organizations can use analytics to protect against these threats by gathering intelligence and monitoring various aspects of your security posture. External threat intelligence includes social media intelligence, domain monitoring, and phishing websites.

Forensics

Just like in the world of analog crime, cyber forensics is all about dealing with the aftermath of an event. When preventative measures have failed and an attack has taken place, cyber forensics empowers an organization to gather all relevant information to identify the attacker, recover any lost data, and help ensure it doesn’t happen again. 

Network analysis and visibility (NAV)

You can’t prevent or deal with threats if you don’t know where they are. Network analysis and visibility tools give your organization insight into what is happening at all times within your network, allowing you to identify threats as soon as they appear – and take quick, decisive action before any damage is done.

Use cases for security analytics

Detection

Security analytics tools can be incredibly effective at  detecting attacks  as they are taking place. They do this by analyzing network traffic constantly, trained to notice any patterns or behavior that may suggest a threat actor. This way, your organization can detect malicious activity before it becomes a threat and before any damage can occur.

Compliance and incident response

One of the key responsibilities of cybersecurity teams is complying with the many laws and regulations that govern modern businesses, ensuring they take the proper steps to protect themselves and their assets against attackers.

Security analytics helps businesses do this. Even when prevention and detection fail, and an attack takes place, analytics tools make it possible to respond rapidly, mitigating any damage and using forensics to learn as much as possible about the attacker.

Analytics tools can also help organizations detect data loss, identify compromised accounts, and recover lost data.

Vast data reservoirs

Security analytics involves constant monitoring and gathering of data about every imaginable aspect of your network and the threats it faces. This makes it possible to build a vast data lake, allowing you to rapidly gain insights and identify threats more reliably.

How Panther does security analytics differently

Panther’s SIEM is built to give businesses the best possible toolkit to defend their organization against all cyber threats. Panther’s security analytics addresses monitoring challenges like high cost, difficulty scaling, and the shift to remote work.

With Panther, the benefits of security analytics include:

  • A vast data lake where all security-relevant data is gathered and stored, making it possible to gain complete security visibility
  • The ability to detect threats in near real-time as fast as possible by analyzing logs as they’re ingested
  • Allowing your teams to focus on security instead of worrying about infrastructure management
  • Accessibility and visibility into valuable insights from large data sources 

To learn more about how Panther can help you harness the power of security analytics, book a demo with us or check out our platform overview.