March 6, 2007

Preparing for Security Event Management

Category: Security Information Management — Raffael Marty @ 1:17 am

I love travelling, not because I have to cram myself into a small seat for 9 hours, but because I usually get a lot of reading done. I was reading this paper about Preparing for Security Event Management by the 360is group. I like the article, there are a lot of good points about what to look out for in a SIM/SEM/ESM deployment. However, some fundamental concepts I disagree with:
The first step in deploying a SEM (Security Event Management Solution) should be to get an inventory, to do an assessment. At least according to the paper. Well, I disagree. The very first step has to be to define the use-cases you are after. What’s the objective. What are you hoping to get out of your ESM (Enterprise Security Manager [I use these terms interchangeably here]? Answer this question and it will drive the entire deployment! Out of the use-cases you will learn what data sources you need. Then you will see how much staff you need, procedures will result from that, etc.

The second step, after the use-case development, should be the assessment of your environment. What do you have? Get an inventory of logging devices (make sure you actually also capture the non-logging security devices!) and all your assets. I know, you are going to tell me right away that there is no way you will get a list of all assets, but get at least one of your critical ones!

Another point that I disagree with is the step about “Simplify”. It talks about cleaning up the security landscape. Throwing out old security devices, getting logging configured correctly, etc. Well, while I agree that the logging of all the devices needs to be visited and configured correctly, the task of re-architecting the security environment is not part of a ESM deployment. You will miserably fail if you do that. The ESM project will be big enough as it is, don’t lump this housr-keeping step into it as well. This is really a separate project that falls under: “Do your IT security right”.

1 Comment »

  1. I agree with your above comment cleaning up the security landspace is a totally diffent project. However what are the neccessary steps you will take to consider successful deployment of a SIMS project?

    Comment by ola — September 19, 2007 @ 1:53 pm

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