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SOC and NOC Services: Outsourcing Business Support

Outsourcing NOC/SOC Services for Your Business

Traditional vs. global SOC

Both a traditional security operations center and a global SOC are the same things. There is, however, a difference in scope. Some companies are only interested in the operations in their immediate region, while others monitor global operations. Furthermore, global SOCs typically have several smaller SOCs reporting to them. The global SOCs can manage better by delegating responsibilities to the local counterparts who can focus on events occurring within a clearly defined area. Managing the actions of a security operations team is much easier when they are focused on a smaller area.

Cloud service operations centers

Cloud security has made it unnecessary for a SOC to be physically located in one place due to the advent of the cloud. SOC-as-a-Service is now being offered by service providers. Even those companies that prefer to keep their SOC functions in-house tend to have at least a part of their environment in the cloud.

No matter what terminology is used to describe SOCs, many of the tools or systems being monitored are hosted in the cloud.

The design and construction of a security operations center

SOCs are designed according to requirements and scope. While SIEM is integral to a SOC for aggregating and analyzing security information, the tools and platforms deployed will depend on the environment. Factors such as network bandwidth, incident response capabilities (automated and manual), and analytical capabilities should be considered.

An audit of existing security procedures should be one of the first steps in designing a SOC. Planning is then informed by the actual situation on the ground. In addition to choosing a location, making sure you have the necessary resources, and budgeting for training, planning is also important. As the SOC takes shape, plans may differ. In advance, nothing can be planned for. Those who believe they have covered every possible scenario will be blindsided by such factors as an entirely new attack vector or a part of their infrastructure that is inadequately protected. So don’t buy into the notion that everything has been planned and designed perfectly. Things can always be improved, and threats are constantly changing. As the SOC evolves, it is important to remain flexible in its planning and construction.

Planning also includes defining the specific tasks that should be assigned to the SOC. An effective security program should include detecting external attacks, monitoring organizational compliance, checking for insider threats, managing incidents, and more. Determine how data will be gathered, aggregated, centralized, summarized, analyzed, and visualized to achieve maximum effect. There will be different requirements for different user groups that access the data, which have to be addressed during the design phase.

There are different types of SOCs

The following types of SOCs exist, including hybrids that combine some of the qualities of each:

  1. Virtual SOCs: no dedicated facilities, geographically dispersed team members, and often outsourced to a managed service provider
  2. SOC/NOC combined: Dedicated team and facility for monitoring of the network and security
  3. SOC: A dedicated in-house facility
  4. ‘Global’ or ‘Command’ SOC: monitors a large area that includes many other regional SOCs
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Smaller organizations may be able to get away with outsourcing security operations centers. Most small or midsize organizations are likely to deploy a hybrid model that combines a virtual security operation center with some internal security operations center duties, particularly those that have already outsourced some security functions and are budget-constrained or do not possess the internal security operations center expertise to handle the load.

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