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Cyber Security as a BIG DATA problem Analysis from a Global Integrator Perspective

Last updated on June 11, 2019

IANT Spreading Knowledge

The cyber security market ​​has been growing at an unprecedented rate in recent years – numerous cyber companies of various sizes are being established, each is offering its wares – whether services or products (both hardware and software), some in detecting attacks and some in preventing them. Analysts estimate that the global cyber market is expected to grow from 75 billion dollars in 2015 to 170 billion in 2020.

The potential damage that can result from cyber-attacks is becoming abundantly clear as the news frequently report on various cyber-attacks around the world, whether of critical infrastructures (such as the West Ukraine power company “Prykarpattyaoblenergo” outage in December 2015), databases (for instance, the leakage of 11.5 million documents from Panamanian law firm in April 2016) and the reported use of “cyber bombs” by the Americans in fighting ISIS. All illustrates the power of offensive cyber capabilities, even as a weapon used against terrorists organizations.

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With the above being said, it is now clearer than ever that both the business and private sectors must be protected appropriately, as the economy relies heavily on numerous systems communicating in real-time. Harming the business sector is akin in some respects to harming the country’s economic security. Therefore, developed countries are now establishing cyber authorities to support the business and private sectors and their cyber security approach.

Fear of cyber-attacks as well as the increasing regulation of both the national authorities in cases of critical infrastructures and insurance companies realizing the growth potential of cyber insurance, compels companies to install various information security components to meet different standards and to protect themselves against cyber-attacks.

In a large organization, there are more than 50 cyber security components from an average of about 40 different manufacturers. Each of them has its unique operating instructions, different configurations, and is producing logs and many false alarms. This in addition to numerous vulnerabilities and intelligence reports which are often analyzed incorrectly due to a lack of understanding of their relevance to what is happening in practice.

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The use of cloud infrastructure, mobiles and IoT (Internet of Things), as well as BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) policies and more, results in a greater attack surface that can’t be easily monitored. The inability to view the organization’s comprehensive risk status makes it impossible to address data security breaches effectively and continuously. Consequently, organizations remain vulnerable for significant periods of time and therefore exposed to cyber-attacks.

As a result, the market is in desperate need of well-trained cyber security professionals. The training pace of CISOs (Chief Information Security Officer) responsible for data security in the organization is much smaller as compared to demand. Currently, there is a shortage of over a million trained CISOs, and according to all forecasts, this number is expected to double in the coming years. This is in addition to the ever-growing complexity of the job, which requires a high level of understanding of the cyber security world. Cyber protection no longer means installing a just firewall, but rather a number of components that together provide the best level of protection for the organization. When it comes to cyber security, one must also bear in mind that 99 percent protection means a security breach that professional hackers will know how to exploit.

The obvious conclusion is that the average CISO struggles to process the large amount of data into real-time contextual, operative conclusions. The ability to analyze and manage risks in real-time is significantly compromised whenever the picture is incomplete, causing the organization to remain unprotected. In addition, analysts explain that over 50% of cyber-breaches in the organizations occur due to its employees – the majority due to malicious intent and the rest due to lack of awareness. The ability of an employee who is knowledgeable and has access to the company’s critical assets to cause damage is immeasurable. With the enormous amount of data and alerts received, it is almost impossible to detect the employees’ suspicious activities which should also be analyzed in the right context. All of the above creates another major concern for the organization CISOs.

It seems therefore that the organizational cyber security challenge has become a BIG-DATA problem. This new way of thinking will not develop in markets and companies that are just beginning to understand the threat, but rather in developed markets that are already familiar with existing data security products, have purchased many of them, and now have to analyze a tremendous quantity of data. Thus, developed markets are now looking for products that can collect data from different security components and analyze it into real-time operative, contextual conclusions (some of which will even be implemented automatically).

Due to the fact that endpoint devices, both PC and mobile connect remotely to networks and that the servers are not always physically located in the company, it is important to gather information both within and without the organization in order to reach the right conclusions. Integrated products with such capabilities can provide CISOs with an “all in one” solution that will increase significantly their ROI, allowing them address the main issues and real threats. These kind of products would provide a major leap forward in terms of effectiveness for the company`s managers and information security officers, enabling them to control the organization risk status at any time without requiring additional manpower.

It appears that this is a great time for cyber integrators, since most customers will search for integrative and analytical solutions right from the start rather than a collection of niche products available on the market. The demand will be for a comprehensive solution, one that creates order rather than a collection of components that doesn’t communicate with each other and produce a lot of noise, making the CISO’s task to protect the organization a lot more difficult. This process probably will result in the partnership of small product companies with integrators, a process that would change the cyber market and the data security in the organization to be much more effective.

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