Understanding Security Logging and Monitoring Best Practices for DoD Companies
Because of the complexity of today’s information systems, there are several ways for attackers to take advantage of IT infrastructure. Attackers can use insufficient logging and monitoring to exploit systems and change their strategy while remaining undetected. Therefore, businesses must practice their security logging and monitoring strategy by implementing a program for security logging and monitoring. CMMC for DoD contractors program requires businesses to comply with the CMMC to be able to work with the DOD.
Institutions can effectively understand the activities taking place in their systems by utilizing technology for an independent review of event reduction, correlation, assessment, and reporting. With the proper event tuning, they will also be better able to recognize and react to unusual or presumably malicious activity.
Why Is Monitoring Important and What Is It?
If security logs are not watched, they are of little to no value. Attackers take a chance that their victim does not keep an eye on their logs.
Log monitoring is searching through the previously recorded log entries for strange, unusual, or suspicious occurrences. While manual log monitoring is possible, it is ineffective and ought to be saved for automation-driven, in-depth analysis.
Automation is essential to undertake any reasonable level of log processing and assessment, given the enormous numbers of logs that systems currently produce. A security information and event management (SIEM) platform is the leading technology for security log monitoring.
The fundamental concept of a SIEM is to gather or ingest logs from several sources, execute or facilitate practical analysis, and perform a predetermined action like notifying events of interest.
There are many SIEMs available on the market today that offer a variety of different functions.
It is imperative to keep an eye on security occurrences via logs. The risk that an intruder retains an undiscovered persistent presence rises dramatically without active log surveillance. Hence timeliness is essential. Although it is always preferable to prevent breaches, it is still imperative to detect them. The main method of doing so is by looking for unusual behavior in security logs.
What Problems Do Logging and Monitoring Face?
The two biggest problems for security logging and monitoring are the sheer volume of logs produced by computer systems and programs and the absence of skilled security employees to recognize anomalous events using a SIEM or other algorithmic approaches.
Other difficulties include:
- Non-standard date stamps.
- Different log content makes it challenging to track a thread across different platforms.
- Different log formats depending on the OS or application that generated the log.
The good news is that modern SIEM platforms and CMMC DFARS compliance can normalize log entries into a typical, parsable format while still maintaining the original log entry if necessary to support additional in-depth analysis.
How to Get the Most Out of Your Efforts: Best Practices for Network/Security Logging and Monitoring?
To get the most out of your company’s security and network tracking and monitoring activities, consider the following suggestions:
- Turn on logging in all of your computer systems, network hardware, and software. To guarantee thorough coverage and prevent any blind spots that could be utilized as initial exploits or pivot points, every element in the system design should be set up to create audit events.
- Tune the information that programs, network devices, and operating systems log. Learn about the auditing abilities of each component in the design, then decide explicitly what occurrences should be audited while taking corporate logging and tracking policies into consideration. Adjust the audit abilities of other elements to security-relevant events or other security events while configuring necessary devices like firewalls and remote access points for verbose logging.
- A baseline of “normal” activity should be established. Organizations need to understand what “normal” behavior, or lawful, routine behaviors that advance corporate goals, is if the goal is to spot anomalous or malicious behavior and issue the required notice.
- Adapt your SIEM. It will be simpler to fine-tune your SIEM to find actions that deviate from “normal” behavior patterns once you have a foundation of activities that indicate “typical” activity. These are the occasions where security personnel must give their full attention. A tuned SIEM will also generate fewer erroneous alarms that need a lot of effort to examine.
- Teach event detection to security personnel. Event analysis is a specialist talent that needs proficiency to recognize and comprehend attack patterns.