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Network Security Monitoring

MSSP Security Operations Center Explained

January 27, 2022

5 minutes

MSSP Security Operations Center Explained | Man standing in security operations room, using a tablet and looking at a projected map of the world on a large screen

It’s becoming more apparent that cybersecurity has become a must-have for businesses as cyberattacks become more serious and more frequent for even small companies today.

Even businesses who understand they are under threat might still be underestimating what’s truly needed to beat back these threats.

Securing a business network is difficult without top-level expertise and best-in-class technology, both of which can be sought from managed security service providers (MSSPs) operating from security operations centers (SOCs).

Read on to learn more about SOCs and why access to one is becoming a necessity for all businesses.

What is a Security Operations Center?

A security operations center (SOC) is a centralized hub for cybersecurity experts in an organization to work collaboratively together in one space. It can be thought of as an MSSP’s control room.

It’s home to a wide array of experts and technology to constantly monitor and assess the networks of clients.

Essentially, an SOC is the headquarters of a cybersecurity operation that allows the security team to work more efficiently to prevent and detect potential cyberattacks as quickly as possible.

What Happens In a Security Operations Center?

As the hub of a cybersecurity team, the SOC has many different responsibilities that help maintain a cybersecurity strategy for businesses. Here are a few of the most crucial functions of a security operations center.

1. Preventative Maintenance

The cybersecurity experts within the SOC are always maintaining security infrastructure to help prevent potential attacks and shutdown attack vectors and avenues.

This includes regularly updating software (firewalls, anti-virus, etc.), patching vulnerabilities, managing blacklisted websites and applications, and monitoring devices.

2. Constant Network Monitoring

One of the biggest benefits of an SOC is the ability to monitor a business’ network 24/7, flagging suspicious activities and reacting quickly to potential breaches and emerging threats.

This constant monitoring means quicker reaction times when threats arise, and this typically means mitigating the impact of a cyberattack and reducing the amount of time it takes to fully recover.

3. Threat Response

If a breach occurs, the SOC is ready with an immediate, measured response to stop and remediate the attack by shutting down endpoints, ending compromised processes, deleting corrupted files, and shutting down unnecessary access to slow the spread.

4. Compliance Management

For businesses in industries which deal with sensitive information and have complex compliance regulations like healthcare or finance, having a team of compliance experts continuously auditing cybersecurity processes to ensure compliance is important.

An SOC and its team is responsible for making sure a business always meets the compliance standards of data protection to avoid fines or lost data.

This is particularly important in instances where technologies and solutions have been scaled, requiring a compliance manager to understand how to ensure that new processes and data are fully in compliance.

5. Breach Recovery

Post-incident, the experts stationed at an SOC have a plan and are ready to immediately begin the process of recovering lost data, reconfiguring endpoints, and deploying backups.

The goal is to restore a business’ ability to continue running smoothly as quickly as possible with unblocked access to their crucial data and information.

If an SOC is responding effectively, downtime will be kept to an absolute minimum, conscious that extended periods of downtime are costly and oftentimes debilitating to companies.

6. Education

Part of the job for cybersecurity experts is to stay up to date on the latest news, trends, threats, and innovations.

This constant research and education helps to strengthen security strategies, ensuring they are built to fight the emerging threats that businesses will face.

Who Works in a Security Operations Center?

The SOC is home to an entire team of cybersecurity experts who work day and night to protect businesses from cyberthreats.

Here is a quick breakdown of the roles and experts you can find working at an SOC:

Cybersecurity Analyst (CSA)

An analyst’s job is to execute tasks and organize/analyze the data to help make informed decisions on future strategies and assess the effectiveness of the current one.

They’re responsible for executing a cybersecurity plan by performing daily monitoring tasks and managing deployed solutions.

Cybersecurity Engineer (CSE)

Engineers are responsible for the final solutions and their implementation.

Cybersecurity Developer (CSD)

Developers build and maintain custom IT security assessments and work with businesses to improve, automate, and custom-build security processes.

Compliance Manager

A compliance manager develops the solutions needed by businesses to meet compliance standards.

Why is an SOC Necessary for Modern Cybersecurity?

The advantages of having access to the expertise and technology available at an SOC cannot be overstated.

Modern cyberattacks are smarter, more unique, and more difficult to avoid than ever before—a simple “set it and forget it” approach to cybersecurity is not substantial enough to head-off attacks.

Businesses need backup from true experts who can improve a business’s overall cybersecurity in several ways, like:

  • Improving response times
  • Increasing transparency and control
  • Increasing organizational visibility
  • Reducing the chance of major breach

Partnering with an MSSP

Access to an SOC and its expert team is just one perk of choosing to partner with a managed security service provider (MSSP) like DOT Security, whose teams of skilled professionals are ready to help businesses meet compliance, shore up their defenses, and manage the security of their networks.

Access to an MSSP’s SOC means 24/7 access to experts who are always watching and keeping their eyes out for behavioral anomalies in a network and, when a breach occurs, are ready to react immediately.

Learn more about DOT Security’s state-of-the-art security operations center in Lake Forest, Illinois and explore all our cybersecurity solutions. Contact us today to speak with an expert.