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SOC-as-a-Service or DIY? 

 Should you build a security operations center (SOC) or rely on SOC-as-a-service? 

 

That question has never been more important now that 2023 set records for the most cataloged cyber attacks, causing 8 trillion USD in damage worldwide, and projections show attacks will snowball, with $9.5 trillion in damages expected in 2024.  

 

Cybersecurity must step up. Having a SOC is key.  

 

The SOC is the hub of your company's cyber defense, responsible for monitoring, detecting, responding to, and minimizing the chance of being hacked. Regardless of whether you have SOC-as-a-Service or in-house, it must be equipped as follows: 

 

  • 24/7/365 monitoring 

  • A SIEM system that protects physical and virtual resources 

  • Intelligent threat analysis to discover attacks before they happen 

  • Rapid response times to mitigate extended liability 

  • Endpoint detection to go beyond anti-virus and analyze suspicious behaviors. 

 

Whether or not you can build a SOC with these capabilities ultimately determines whether SOC-as-a-service or DIY makes more sense. Anyone who can’t would be wise to outsource SOC responsibilities to a provider with world-class tools and highly trained teams already in place rather than struggling and over-spending on building an insufficient unit in-house.  

 

With that in mind, consider all it takes to build a basic SOC: 

 

  1. Analyze 

Start by analyzing your entire company's infrastructure with the Chief Information Security Officer, IT Lead, CEO, COO, and other key stakeholders to discover what needs to be protected. Be thorough and critical during this step to ensure a comprehensive protection plan that excludes nothing while identifying the critical weak points. 

  1. Design 

Based on step 1, develop safeguards and processes. How you will handle monitoring, detecting, responding to, and mitigating threats is decided here. In general, a stronger SOC takes a longer and more complex design.  

  1. Prepare 

Now that you have a design of all the responsibilities your SOC will cover, prepare your company for the changes required: 

 

  • Purchasing software licenses 

  • Tracking and cataloging all devices 

  • Syncing endpoints to your SIEM and EDR platforms 

  • Mapping all your services to a dedicated response platform 

 

A key factor to remember here is coherency—all platforms and tools must align and always show the same data. 

  1. Implement 

You've extensively planned, designed, and prepared—now it's time to implement the SOC. Install all software into a production environment and develop tools for the SOC to monitor all systems. 24/7/365 coverage is essential, as is ensuring that all SOC employees have desktops and laptops with enhanced security measures. 

  1. Test 

Now that your SOC is running, you must test the system to assess performance and find bugs, weak points, and vulnerabilities before cyber criminals do. Run standard tests like password spraying, malicious mail detection, unsafe software installation, data extractions, and brute force attacks. Start with common and significant attacks, then work to edge cases. 

  1. Analyze (Part 2) 

Previously, you identified goals and metrics for the SOC. Now that it’s tested, did you miss any? Are there any points that were weaker than expected? Are there any gaps in monitoring from the software suite you use? If so, iterate on steps 4 & 5 until satisfied that all the points from step 1 are adequately protected. 

  1. Deploy 

Deploying your SOC makes your company significantly safer than before. Your company's risk against data breaches, ransomware, and severe financial and reputational damage has lowered substantially, and you can prioritize growth knowing you are secure, stable, and closer to compliance. 

 

Skip the Steps with SOC-as-a-Service 

SOC-as-a-Service comes with many advantages, from cost savings to stronger security, but the most compelling reason for most companies to outsource their security hub is to avoid having to build one in-house. Whether it’s time, energy, expertise, or all three, SOC building takes more resources than most companies have to spare.  

 

Considering that cyber attacks cost small and midsize businesses $3 million on average, you aren’t stable or scalable without a SOC, so the priority must be putting the strongest one in place as quickly as possible. You check both those boxes with SOC-as-a-Service. And, depending on your provider, you have the best defense against cyber attacks, business disruptions, and non-compliance. 

 

At NopalCyber, we provide 24/7/365 SOC-as-a-service monitoring from an elite team of cyber experts for a fraction of the time and expense required to build something comparable in-house. And even though our services are fully customized to your tech stack and security requirements, they come online quickly so you spend as little time as possible without SOC protections.   

 

Ready to bring your SOC online now, not later? Contact us.  

 

 

 

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