Organizations use these tools to handle the overflow of security-related information and events generated by the typical organization today. Security Operations Center (SOC) staff often manually manage the identification and response to cyber threats. However, as data streams and threat alerts continue to grow, it becomes nearly impossible to manually handle all this data. Here is where Security Orchestration, Automation and Response (SOAR) and Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) come in.
What is SIEM?
SIEM solutions collect and aggregate log and event data from applications, security devices, and systems into a centralized platform, then analyze this data to identify indicators of compromise (IoC) that may point to a cyber attack. These solutions use machine learning to improve their detection capabilities.
A SIEM platform collects, processes, correlates, aggregates, and monitors for anomalies across data logs, then notifies users through alerts when it detects suspicious behavior.
How is SOAR different from SIEM?
SIEM focuses on finding suspicious behavior and triggering alerts, leaving the actual response and remediation to humans. Thus, while it improves threat detection, it actually creates more work for SOC teams. In addition, it can contribute to alert fatigue if there is a large number of false positives. That being said, SIEM excels at ingesting and parsing large datasets of internal logs, thus complementing SOAR’s capabilities.
SOAR solutions go several steps further than SIEM by increasing the pre-processing of detected threats before the system alerts a cybersecurity officer. SOAR can ingest data from external sources, like threat intelligence sources. In addition, as the main function of SOAR technologies is the ability to coordinate and leverage different security products, the system gives organizations the possibility of streamlining existing tools, using them in new ways.
So, which should you choose? You should use both. SIEM tools are better for processing large volumes of data, while SOAR can leverage SIEM’s capabilities, orchestrating SIEM together with other security tools.