The main challenges for SOC analysts

If you’re a SOC analyst, you know that security alerts never end. No matter what size organization you work for, there always seems to be more work to do. From new vulnerabilities to critical alerts and ongoing patches that need to be applied, the fight continues.

Today’s SOC analysts are responsible for ensuring that their organization is protected against cyber threats. It can be a difficult task to balance, with so many different types of threats and so many incoming alerts – it’s easy to get overwhelmed.

Jump to the graphic novel, below.

Now let’s move on to the main challenges facing Security Operations Center (SOC) analysts.

Too many alerts

56% of large organizations process more than 1,000 security alerts per day. This puts SOC analysts in a difficult position. They are the first to stop active threats and they need to know what is happening on their networks at all times. The problem is that the SOC analyst processes too many alerts to triage them all effectively.

55% of security teams say that critical alerts are being missed, fueling analysts’ work frustrations. It’s no wonder then that 62% security professionals say fatigue from the alert has led to staff turnover.

Too many false positives

43% of security professionals find that 40% of their alerts are false positives.

SOC analysts deal with too many false positive security alerts. Sifting through all the noise and finding the real threats is cumbersome, which means SOCs are missing critical opportunities to stop threats sooner. This leads to an increase in analyst burnout and makes it harder for them to do their job effectively.

Understaffed security teams

57% industry describes the global shortage of security skills as either “very serious” or “serious”.

Analysts are feeling the effects of understaffed security teams. They are often exhausted, with little time for training or other responsibilities. It also means that it takes them longer to react to an incident, as there is usually a backlog of work. Analysts then have to take more time to determine if it is a legitimate threat or a false alarm, resulting in wasted time and money investigating non-events.

Poor visibility in environments

54% of security teams describe visibility as a key challenge in SecOps.

Analysts are tasked with dealing with threats and vulnerabilities, but they don’t always have access to the data they need. Siled tools and delayed data ingestion make it nearly impossible to get real-time data. Delays or incomplete scanning can lead to undetected threats.

It takes on average 280 days to contain a data breach, which puts even more stress on analysts.

Spending too much time on manual tasks

78% of analysts say it takes them on average more than 10 minutes to investigate each alert.

The amount of data collected in an enterprise environment is enormous, so it’s no surprise that SOC analysts spend most of their time collecting, analyzing, and reporting on data. This leaves little time to triage critical alerts, proactively hunt threats, or invest in training. No wonder then that 92% of security professionals agree that automation is necessary to handle these large volumes of alerts.

Compliance Challenges

69% of security teams find that regulatory compliance is a significant portion of their security spend.

Compliance is a big issue for SOCs. It’s not just about keeping your organization out of hot water; it’s also about showing customers that you take security seriously. But one of the biggest challenges facing SOC analysts is maintaining compliance while working with limited systems and budgets.

Limited security budgets

Even in the midst of costly and damaging cyberattacks, security teams are still struggling with limited budgets. Analysts understand that there are solutions available to improve safety performance, such as dwell time, MTTD, and MTTR. But if the budget isn’t there, analysts are forced to manually triage threats.

Security teams must be able to track metrics and generate reports to demonstrate value. However, there is usually not enough time or enough existing capacity to do this effectively.

Security analysts are again a deep sea of ​​alerts. Given the size and scope of any SOC, security analysts often have their hands full with large volumes of data and alerts to sift through. However, with the right tools and processes in place, SecOps could meet these challenges head-on, enabling them to protect their organizations.

Immerse yourself in the short graphic novel, Threat detected: the challenges of a SOC analyst.

*** This is a syndicated blog from the Security Bloggers Network of Swimlane (en-US) Written by Ashlyn Eperjesi. Read the original post at:

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