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SOC vs CSIRT: What’s the Difference?

CyberSponse’s staff constantly gets asked about the features that strengthen different cybersecurity organizations.  As a Security Orchestration Automation Response (SOAR) company, we understand better than anyone that an effective cybersecurity organization consists of the right mix of people, processes, and technologies. If you work in cybersecurity, you have most likely heard of the two teams: security operation centers (SOCs) and computer security incident response teams (CSIRTs). So when it comes to SOC vs CSIRT, which team is better? It all depends on the needs of your organization. Each team has their differences, from the way they are built to their exact work in the organization.

Security Operation Centers (SOC)

Think of the SOC as the brain of a cybersecurity organization. The SOC is the center of all roles and responsibilities, seeking to protect the information in the enterprise as its primary goal. It performs prevention, detection, incident management, and anything to do with managing and protecting information within the company; the SOC also oversees the people, processes, and technology involved in all operational aspects of cybersecurity.

More often than not, companies will only have a SOC before they establish a separate CSIRT. So typically, a CSIRT function will fall under a SOC for maximum capabilities. The goal of a SOC is to implement and oversee cyber-related activities to make an organization run more efficiently and protect against malicious attacks.

Create a SOC

Some smaller companies do not need a full-blown SOC. Below are some points for your consideration that will help decide if your organization needs a SOC:

  1. An increase in the amount of sensitive data being handled
  2. The emerging threat landscape requires dedicated security resources
  3. Your organization is growing and the number of end-points is increasing
  4. Standard processes and ownership over security are non-existent
  5. ROI on security is not going according to plan
  6. You need to improve monitoring and response capabilities
  7. An outdated Manager Security Service Provider (MSSP)
Computer Security Incident Response Team (CSIRT)

The Computer Security Incident Response Team (CSIRT), is a center of information security, incident management and response in an organization. A SOC may be used to guide the CSIRT or the CSIRT may act as the company’s main cybersecurity outlet.

Having said that, what are actual differences between the CSIRT and a SOC? The CSIRT enables an organization to have many hands working on a function, therefore minimizing and controlling the resulting damage of an incident.  You also need the team to be transparent with what has happened; they need to communicate to customers, board members, and possibly the public of just how the incident has affected the company. Additionally, if the incident was perpetrated by an internal actor, legal action will need to be pursued against the individual.

CSIRT: Why Should it be Created?

The CSIRT has the abilities to rank and escalates alerts and tasks, coordinate and execute response strategies, and develop communication plans for all departments. The CSIRT can be a formal or an informal team depending on your company’s needs; it will depend on threats that your organization is facing.

If your organization is in a high-visibility industry (government, healthcare, etc.) were responding to threats is of higher priority and a critical part of business strategy, a full-time CSIRT may be necessary. The CSIRT can evolve over time; it can start off informally and later evolve into a fully developed organizational function.

How CyberSponse can help

No matter what company or team you have leading your security against cyber attacks, whether it’s SOC vs CSIRT, you must ensure the proper plan and products are in place. You need the best of the best: CyberSponse. We can help centralize and navigate your team through the cybersecurity world by organizing tools to alerts.

CyberSponse Inc., a global leader in cybersecurity automation and orchestration, helps accelerate an organization’s processes, security operations teams and incident responders. The CyberSponse platform also enables organizations to seamlessly integrate, automate and playbook their security tool stack, enabling better, faster and more effective security operations. Moreover, with a global presence, offering an enterprise platform, CyberSponse enables organizations to secure their security operations teams and environments. For more information, visit our homepage.

For more on Incident Response and how to use playbooks in your organization please check out our other website: incidentresponse.com.