Prepare a short “talking points” paper in which you answer the question: What best practices should Sifers-Grayson follow when establishing a SOCC?
In your talking points, you should address how your selected best practices support the phases of the incident response process (i.e. Incident Detection, Containment, Eradication, & Recovery) and discuss the role of that a Security Operations Center will play in making sure that incidents are handled and reported in an effective and efficient manner.
Your “talking points” should be 3 to 5 paragraphs long (15 – 25 specific bullet points).
Your audience is a group of Sifers-Grayson executives who are reviewing the plans for establishing an internal SOCC. (Outsourcing the SOCC was considered and that option was rejected.)
Provide in-text citations and references for 3 or more authoritative sources. Put the reference list at the end of your article.
Topic: Security Operations & Control Centers (SOCC)
- Implementing & Managing the Security Operations & Control Center
- Enterprise Architectures
- Security Information & Event Management (SIEM)
The primary purpose of the Security Operations & Control Center (SOCC) is to monitor the enterprise and respond to service outages in the information infrastructure (networks to servers to applications and devices). The SOCC also monitors for indicators of attacks and responds to incidents as they occur. SOCC’s are a necessity for large businesses and government agencies. But, for a small to medium sized business such as Sifers-Grayson, the expense may outweigh the benefits. Right-sizing an enterprise monitoring capability can be a significant challenge.
For the client, Sifers-Grayson, establishing a SOCC could give them the following much needed capabilities:
- Consolidated IT Help Desk (combining Engineering & Headquarters IT support into a single, well trained team).
- Server Status Monitoring (patches, up/down, host-based security status)
- Enterprise Endpoint Protection Platform Monitoring / Host monitoring (e.g. workstations)
- Monitoring and Responding to Intrusion Detection Systems (Alerts & Alarms)
- Firewall Operations & Monitoring
- Network Connection Monitoring
The readings for this week provide information about best practices for implementing (setting up) and operating a security operations & control center to provide a monitoring capability for the enterprise’s security posture.
Before the enterprise can be monitored and controlled by the SOCC, it is necessary to know what the pieces are (end point devices, servers, networks and network connections, applications, databases, cloud resources, etc.) and how they are connected to each other. The documentation that provides this information is an Enterprise Architecture (EA). Depending upon the methodology used, the enterprise architecture can range from a set of labeled interconnection diagrams to a much more complex set of documentation that extends beyond the technologies to incorporate business processes, standards, and more.
There are several styles and frameworks in use for defining what an enterprise architecture is and the types of information provided in each type of EA artifact (document or drawing). The main ones in use today are:
- Department of Defense Architecture Framework (DoDAF)
- Federal Enterprise Architecture Framework
- The Open Group Architecture Framework (TOGAF)
- Zachman Framework
Note: Throughout this course, you have seen diagrams of the Sifers-Grayson IT enterprise. These are simplified versions of diagrams used as part of a comprehensive Enterprise Architecture.
The reading “On small-scale IT users’ system architectures and cyber security: A UK case study” introduces small scale organizations and how they can benefit from developing an enterprise architecture for their organization. (Note: in this article, the authors use the term “architecture” by itself to refer to the enterprise architecture.)
It is important to note that our focus this week is not so much on the question of “what is” an enterprise architecture as it is on the role that enterprise architectures can play in securing information, information systems, and information infrastructures throughout and across the Sifers-Grayson enterprise. As you read the readings, your emphasis should be upon developing a high-level understanding of how enterprise architectures are used in the context of monitoring and defending the enterprise.
The readings also provide information about a key technology — Security Information and Event Management — that is required for effective and efficient security operations monitoring.