What are the top ten capabilities for Amazon Web Services (AWS) SIEM? And why should that matter to your enterprise?
Few cloud infrastructure-as-a-service providers possess the popularity and prominence of AWS. Indeed, plenty of enterprises embrace AWS services as their avenue to the cloud. After all, the cloud offers an avenue for businesses to increase their profitability and communications efficiency. Who wouldn’t want that?
Unfortunately, AWS proves a complex and detailed system which can create serious security vulnerabilities if not carefully monitored and secured. Configuration, authentication, suspicious activity, or blatant cyber attacks can compromise your digital assets and disrupt your business. However, without the right cybersecurity solution in place, your AWS cloud could remain compromised for weeks before discovery.
Therefore, AWS SIEM should become a necessity for any enterprise’s cybersecurity platform. Only through SIEM can your enterprise properly detect and mitigate threats; a prevention-based model can’t adequately protect your enterprise cloud infrastructure. To illustrate, we outline the top ten capabilities of AWS SIEM Solutions.
The Top Ten AWS SIEM Capabilities
1. Cloud Security Monitoring
No enterprise should consider their modern cybersecurity complete without cloud security monitoring. This principle applies doubly to enterprises utilizing AWS. Specifically, AWS SIEM cloud security monitoring should look for the following threats:
- Anomalous API Activity.
- Potentially Unauthorized or Compromised Instances.
- Threat Actor Reconnaissance.
Cloud infrastructure can create areas not easily observable by your IT security team. Without proper monitoring, threats can linger in your network for months causing business disruption or damage. Overall, on-premises monitoring can’t adequately protect your digitally transformed business.
2. Log Management and WorkFlow Collection
Log management constitutes one of the key SIEM capabilities, whether on the cloud, in a hybrid system, or on-premises. In fact, AWS SIEM needs proper log management to optimally collect information from the disparate environment and from all of your users’ activities on it. AWS systems are usually so disparate that simply collecting all of the relevant security information can prove a hassle without the right cybersecurity.
Relying on manual log management of your data sources can prove ineffective and dangerous; cloud-based threats can easily bypass human intelligence monitoring. Hackers often innovate their threats to evade normal detection methods to exploit this very common security gap.
Every SIEM solution collects log information from all of the applications, users, and databases connecting to and interacting with the digital infrastructure. For a cloud SIEM solution, this applies to all of the actors connecting to the cloud. However, even in on-premises environments, log management poses a unique problem: each application collects data in different languages and in different formats.
Trying to correlate security events in different mediums can drain time and resources from your IT security team. Moreover, it can prove equally challenging to actually make the necessary security event correlations. AWS SIEM solutions should assist in normalizing all of the components of your cloud infrastructure.
4. Actionable Security Insights and Alerts
A critical part of any good AWS SIEM or other cloud security solution is security alerting. SIEM cybersecurity generates alerts based on security events correlated from the collected and normalized logs. Without it, your security team will continue to struggle with prioritizing their investigations or even knowing where to begin their searches for potential breaches.
However, your SIEM cybersecurity can’t just provide security alerts. Without correlation rules which correspond with your AWS environment, false positives will bombard your IT security team. These can bury legitimate leads and create significant burnout. Additionally, AWS SIEM must provide security insights which allow your security team to take action.
Just having relevant security information may not prove enough for your IT security team. An alert which can’t adequately convey the cyber threat and the security vulnerability it exploited doesn’t help. Therefore, a stronger SIEM cybersecurity solution should provide your team with visualizations for easier analysis and investigations.
As explored above, any AWS SIEM solution must be able to collect and analyze information from CloudTrail, CloudWatch, and S3 and ELB access logs. Of course, without the means to centrally view the security events from all of these sources, you render your cybersecurity efforts moot. Therefore, you should seek out an InfoSec solution which centralizes your view of the security flows.
7. Relevant Threat Intelligence for AWS SIEM
Every SIEM solution provides access to threat intelligence feeds. In fact, comprehensive SIEM should provide cybersecurity threat feeds from multiple access.
However, threat intelligence by itself isn’t enough. Getting threat intelligence only relevant to on-premises doesn’t actually support your AWS SIEM solution; irrelevant information can muddy the waters of your cybersecurity efforts.
Instead, you need threat intelligence which fits with your specific cloud-based correlation rules. Through this, you can detect the latest threats, vulnerabilities, misconfigurations, and anomalous behaviors in your AWS cloud environment.
Going onto the cloud basically mandates the accelerated growth of your IT infrastructure. Unsurprisingly, this proves part of the reason enterprises jump to the cloud in the first place; staying with an on-premises digital environment inherently places a ceiling on the size of your business in the digital era. Needless to say, having a ceiling in the digital world limits your profitability and effectiveness. Going to the cloud literally means the sky’s the limit on your business.
However, this also means that your SIEM solution must scale with that environment in order to deliver optimal cybersecurity monitoring. You can’t use an on-premises SIEM to protect any cloud environment. If you still employ an on-premises SIEM while on AWS, it is time for an upgrade.
9. Event Correlation
Of course, this relates to SIEM in general and not just AWS SIEM. In fact, event correlation forms the core around which all other SIEM capabilities are built. From the collected and normalized log data from throughout the cloud, your cybersecurity can make connections between seemingly harmless events. These correlations can reveal data breaches in real-time, mitigating dwell time.
For comprehensive AWS SIEM, you need event correlation which can recognize threats within the unique AWS infrastructure. The events in the cloud can be even more disparate and seemingly unrelated. Regular on-premises security analytics can’t do that.
Just because you go to the cloud does not mean you delegate your cybersecurity obligations. Indeed. cloud providers are only liable for the security of their own infrastructure; if your cloud assets become compromised, you’re the one on the hook for the damages. Unsurprisingly, the same applies to your compliance.
In conclusion, if you want to learn more about AWS SIEM and cloud security you can always download our free 2019 Buyer’s Guide. We examine vendors from both categories in-depth, with our Bottom Line on each!
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