Will Automation Save the Security Team?

May 07, 2021

Think of a world taken over by independent machines and self-building robots that are perfect as they fight mankind. People will always wonder about their ability to function and reproduce. 

In reality, cybersecurity automation saves money, time and people’s lives. For instance, a ransomware variant was responsible for a cyber attack that cost an estimated $4-8 billion dollars. Nevertheless, it can be prevented with security updates. Regardless, 70% of businesses may not be able to depend on automated patching.

The use of automation has its own negative effects. However, intelligence-led security can also be challenging. The term intelligence refers to a fundamental capability that delivers a crystal ball-like understanding. On the other hand, intelligence means Google’s DNS as a malicious indicator of compromise (IOC).

The intelligence for automation does not mean a capacity that can be chosen from the shelf, plugged in and start showing positive results. The two have their own challenges. However, once they are overcome, the two can deliver exceptional results. 

Resistance to Implementing Security Automation  

Many years ago, automation replaced manual, repetitive tasks and changed the car production industry. Nowadays, other industries are also implementing automation. The construction industry is one example. A robot can now lay bricks faster than human beings. This will cut down cost and reduce the delivery time with little human involvement. 

It’s easy to see the reason why many leaders of industries aspire to automate their work processes. However, if automation brings a lot of results, why is it not used everywhere? Will cybersecurity automation save the IT security team in an organization? 

The basic costs associated with cybersecurity automation may be huge, which include defining the problem and creating the mechanisms. Based on the first generations of automation, every step in the solution needs to be well-documented, without any room for deviation. Automation can be fixed and not always right for a particular purpose, particularly in industries that always change.

IT security teams protecting businesses and organizations from hackers are involved in a continuous cat and mouse game. Security professionals must adopt alternative and new techniques against cyber attacks or threats. Security analysts must evaluate, hypothesize and distribute their respective intelligence products while being adaptive and flexible.

It’s known that human beings need to evaluate information and make effective analysis that can help protect businesses from cyber attacks. However, it’s humans that cost a lot of money and time by taking up laborious duties. While one of the goals of intelligence is timeliness, IT security teams must work hard to offer valuable intelligence in a timely manner.

Analyzing, processing and distributing information requires a huge number of repetitive tasks. These tasks are perfect for automation. However, this means human beings must carefully outline the processes within each task. Therefore, it’s something a matured intelligence cell must be able to produce. However, there are some parts of the intelligence lifecycle that need regular changes, adaptation to different variables and creation of new solutions to the unknowns. 

Consequently, human beings are suitable for adaptation and moving from one technology to another. Even with artificial intelligence (AI), we are many years away from AI machines that can fully replace humans in all aspects of the cybersecurity lifecycle. 

Fast-track Repeatable Tasks with Security Automation 

Automation and intelligence implementation should be well documented and its capabilities to the defense of an organization must be known. IT security experts can use the previous best practices to support the adoption of automated intelligence while authorizing people to be adaptable and creative. 

Automation
  • Should avoid negative effects and be kept as simple and direct as possible while adopting or defining an automated solution.
  • Is not fit for every situation.
  • Should belong to long-term planning and take on repeatable tasks for a long period.
Intelligence
  • Should be integrated across systems and functions where possible — breaking down the tasks used to produce intelligence; Application programming interface (API) technology makes integration substantially easier with frameworks such as STIX and TLP to assist information flows.
  • Needs to be limited to reduce the risk of drowning in data — especially when using automation that can quickly overwhelm a team.

Intelligence production and automation have their distinctive challenges. However, together they can be used to solve different issues while offering extra value. For many businesses, the future objective is to automate their work processes and cybersecurity tasks, yet organizations may hesitate to move forward until a mature intelligence capability is accomplished. Nevertheless, with cybersecurity automation, vulnerabilities can be managed effectively. 

Explore Security Automation More

Generally, automation is increasingly being embraced within cybersecurity. Some IT teams saw AI and automation as a threat to their jobs.

As organizations strive to safeguard their data, experienced cybersecurity experts are always in high demand. With automation, which is capable of handling mundane tasks better than humans, there are some human features that automation tools may not be able to account for.

With many cybersecurity experts believing that automation will make their job stress-free and easier, security teams can be more effective with the resources at hand. 

A partnership attitude is vital for the cybersecurity team at any level in an organization. While being a good team player that can work in different departments within the organization, they will be able to understand essential business requirements. The ability to offer unmatched and valuable support to users while being able to communicate concisely and precisely across departments is an essential requirement for any cybersecurity expert. 

Additionally, increased levels of automation within the cybersecurity industry make adaptable skill sets become invaluable to an organization. As risks and threats continue to grow with the advancement in technology, it’s ideal to be prepared for the next cyber attack that may be out there waiting to break your defense line.

As investments in cybersecurity automation increases, leveraging AI tools to assist organizations in their response towards cybersecurity is an essential skill. Certain levels of emotional intelligence can help to boost the defense of a company effectively and efficiently. 

For effective cybersecurity automation and vulnerability management, Vicarius software is the right tool for IT security teams to protect their company’s network, data and servers. Vicarius is a vulnerability management software that targets cybersecurity officers and operators, as well as IT managers and operators from the U.S. market.

 

Photo by Lynda Hinton on Unsplash

Written by

Kent Weigle

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