Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) is software that improves security awareness of an IT environment by combining security information management (SIM) and security event management (SEM). SIEM solutions enhance threat detection, compliance, and security incident management through the gathering and analysis of real-time and historical security event data and sources.

SIEM’s main capabilities provide a broad range of log event collection and management, increasing the ability to analyze log events and other data across dissimilar sources, and operational capabilities including incident management, dashboards, and reporting.

SIEM also offers data aggregation across the enterprise network and normalization of that data for further analysis. Additionally, SIEM helps enable security monitoring, user activity monitoring, and compliance.

How SIEM works

SIEM’s core function is threat detection and threat management. A SIEM supports the incident response capabilities of a Security Operations Center (SOC), which includes threat detection, investigation, threat hunting, and response and remediation activities. A SIEM collects and combines data from event sources across an organization’s IT and security framework, including host systems, networks, firewalls and antivirus security devices. It performs analysis of the data collected across endpoint, network and cloud assets against security rules and advanced analytics to identify potential security issues within an enterprise.

When an incident or event is identified, analyzed and categorized, SIEM works to deliver reports and notifications to the appropriate stakeholders within the organization. Additionally, a SIEM helps satisfy regulatory compliance requirements by providing auditors a view into their organization’s compliance status through continuous monitoring and reporting capabilities.

5 Benefits of a SIEM Solution

1. Threat Hunting and Detection

The use of an intelligent SIEM is the key to managing the strategic, tactical and operational aspects of threat hunting – none of which can be ignored in today’s threatscape. Effective integration of SIEM as the centerpiece working with threat investigation tools is crucial to gaining improved visibility into potential threats.

2. Reduced Response Time Using Enhance Situational Awareness

SIEM can harness the power of global threat intelligence to enable rapid discovery of events involving communications with suspicious or malicious IP addresses. Attack paths and past interactions can be quickly identified, reducing response time for more rapid disposition of threats to the environment.

3. Integration & Real-time Visibility

Integration across your security infrastructure delivers a level of real-time visibility into your organization’s security posture

4. Security Staffing and Resources

Facing increased variety and volume of threats, staffing security operations teams continues to be a concern. A single SIEM server can streamline workflow using multi-source log data to generate a single report that addresses all relevant logged security event. An analyst-centric user experience offers increased flexibility, ease of customization, and faster response to investigators. Enterprises continue to seek external service support or managed services for their SIEM. Businesses with limited cybersecurity resources find SIEM’s threat management attractive to larger clients or partners.

5. Compliance Benefits

SIEM also provides beneficial compliance tasks such as simplifying audits and governance.

SIEM Best Practices

Set Your Scope – Determine the scope of your SIEM implementation. Build policy-based rules defining activities and logs your SIEM software should monitor. Use that policy and compare its rules to external compliance requirements to determine what type of dashboard and reporting your organization requires.

Fine-tune Correlation Rules – SIEM software presents its own set of pre-configured correlation rules. Your security team can fine-tune the software to your organization’s needs by enabling everything by default, observe the behavior, and identify tuning opportunities to increase detection efficacy and reduce false positives.

Identify Compliance Requirements – Meeting compliance requirements is an important benefit to most organizations using SIEM. An organization should analyze a software’s ability to support specific compliance mandates as required to meet organizational auditing requirements.

Monitor Access to Critical Resources – A SIEM tool should monitor various aspects of critical resources including privileged and administrative address, unusual user behavior on systems, remote login attempts and system failure.

Defend Network Boundaries – All vulnerable areas on a network should be monitored by SIEM including firewalls, routers, ports, and wireless access points.

Test Your SIEM – Important alert metrics and the need for SIEM reconfiguration can be produced when conducting test runs of your SIEM implementation and assessing how it reacts.

Implement Response Plan – Security incidents can only be dealt with in a timely manner through the use of an incident response plan. Organizations should plan how it will alert staff following a SIEM alert.

Introducing McAfee SIEM

McAfee was recently named 2020 Gartner Peer Insights ‘Voice of the Customer’ for both our SIEM solution and enterprise DLP.  The Gartner Peer Insights Customers’ Choice Distinction is based on feedback and ratings from end-user professionals who purchase, implement and/or use McAfee’s DLP and SIEM solutions.

McAfee SIEM solutions use real-time situational awareness for identifying, understanding, and responding to threats. McAfee SIEM detect, prioritize, and manage incidents with one SIEM solution.

McAfee SIEM solutions provide

  • Simplified Operations – The built-in security content packs and embedded compliance framework simplify analyst and compliance operations.
  • Security Remediation – Improve your organization’s effectiveness through continuous visibility, actionable analysis, and orchestration.
  • Integrated Approach – An extensible and distributed design integrates with more than three dozen partners, hundreds of standardized data sources, and industry threat intelligence.

Key components of McAfee SIEM solutions

Component Description
Enterprise Security Manager (ESM) Award-winning SIEM solution delivers intelligent, fast, and accurate security information and event management and log management in the cloud or on-premise.
Advanced Correlation Engine (ACE) Correlates parsed data to identify potential threats, trends and suspicious activities. Leverages over 250 pre-defined correlation relation rules delivered through security content packs that are frequently updated to keep up with the changing threat landscape.
Event Receiver (ERC) Collects, parse and normalize raw security data and logs from 100’s of data sources.
Enterprise Log Search (ELS) Hunt faster by searching billions of events in seconds and get immediate access to raw logs for additional context, all integrated within a single console.
Global Threat Intelligence (GTI) for ESM Built for big security data, McAfee GTI for ESM puts the power of McAfee Labs directly into the security monitoring flow with curated threat intelligence.
ESM Cloud McAfee’s cloud delivered SIEM solution, available in pre-defined, easy to use templates. Each template is designed for environments with specific events per second (EPS) rates and includes additional services such as 24x7 system health monitoring, upgrades and updates, quarterly health checks and onboarding services. McAfee ESM Cloud focuses on removing the barriers to your success in security operations.