Establishing a global security operations center is an essential investment in your organization's security. Learn more about the benefits of an outsourced solution and how to choose the right provider.
Sept 29, 2023
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Now more than ever, businesses and their employees face ongoing challenges from increasingly sophisticated physical and digital threats. The responsibility of safeguarding people, sensitive data, and critical assets has never been more crucial — or more demanding. Unfortunately, not every company has the resources or budget to develop a full-time threat detection and response effort, even as their business scales.
Amid this challenging landscape, many organizations are turning to an innovative solution: outsourcing their security operations, typically to what’s called a security operations center (SOC) or a global security operations center (GSOC). Working with an experienced SOC partner is a powerful way for businesses to fortify their defenses against modern threats.
A SOC or a GSOC is a proactive nerve center dedicated to monitoring, analyzing, and responding to potential security breaches. However, establishing and maintaining an in-house GSOC can be an overwhelming task, requiring substantial investments in resources, technology, and skilled personnel. Outsourcing the GSOC presents a game-changing alternative, providing businesses with access to a specialized team of experts, state-of-the-art technologies, and continuous monitoring, all while freeing up internal resources to focus on core operations.
In this guide, we'll explore the benefits of SOC as a service, and how it empowers businesses to navigate the evolving landscape with confidence and resilience.
What is a Security Operations Center?
A GSOC or SOC is a centralized unit responsible for monitoring, detecting, and responding to security incidents and threats across an organization's infrastructure. It acts as the nerve center for security operations, providing real-time insights into potential risks and enabling timely responses to mitigate security breaches.
SOCs and GSOCs will continuously monitor a client’s physical security. These SOCs oversee various physical security measures, such as video surveillance and alarm systems, to identify potential breaches, unauthorized access, or unusual activities that could jeopardize the safety of employees, visitors, or valuable assets. A SOC can also monitor employees while traveling, as well as any threats in close proximity to their location to ensure the employee — and their employer — have full situational awareness and 24/7 real-time response if needed.
The same often goes for cybersecurity: SOCs continuously monitor an organization's network, systems, and applications for any signs of suspicious or malicious activity. Cybersecurity analysts within the SOC use advanced technologies and tools to collect and analyze data, looking for indicators of potential cyber threats, such as data breaches, malware infections, or unauthorized access attempts. Once a security incident is identified, the SOC's incident response team takes immediate action to contain and mitigate the threat.
By integrating physical security with cybersecurity in a unified SOC, organizations can better protect against comprehensive threats that may originate from both digital and physical realms.
Why Companies Outsource Their GSOC
There are many reasons why a company would choose to go with a managed GSOC, rather than building their own apparatus:
- Cost-effectiveness and scalability: Outsourcing a GSOC eliminates the need for significant upfront investments in infrastructure, technology, and personnel. Instead, businesses can opt for a flexible, pay-as-you-go model, allowing them to scale security resources based on their evolving needs.
- Access to specialized expertise without interruption: GSOC service providers employ skilled security analysts, threat hunters, and incident responders who possess extensive knowledge of the latest threats and best practices. And rather than worrying about maintaining experienced staff themselves, businesses can let their SOC provider handle hiring, training, and retaining this workforce.
- Enhanced security and threat intelligence: Partnering with a reputable GSOC operator grants access to a wealth of threat intelligence data and real-time monitoring capabilities. This proactive approach strengthens a company's security posture, enabling early detection and mitigation of potential threats.
- Focus on core business operations: By outsourcing their GSOC, businesses can free up their internal IT and security teams to concentrate on core business operations instead of constantly managing security monitoring and incident response.
- 24/7 monitoring and incident response: A managed GSOC provides round-the-clock monitoring, ensuring that potential threats are identified and addressed promptly, even during non-business hours, holidays, or weekends.
- Advanced security technologies and tools: Reputable GSOC service providers leverage cutting-edge security technologies, such as artificial intelligence and machine learning algorithms, to bolster threat detection and automate repetitive tasks, improving overall efficiency.
- Comprehensive threat detection and mitigation: An outsourced GSOC, equipped with sophisticated tools and skilled analysts, can rapidly detect and neutralize threats before they escalate, reducing the risk of data breaches and other security incidents.
- Compliance with industry regulations: Trusted GSOC operators adhere to industry regulations and compliance standards, ensuring businesses meet the necessary requirements, which is particularly crucial in heavily regulated sectors.
- Proactive security measures: Through constant threat hunting and proactive monitoring, a managed GSOC can identify emerging attack patterns and vulnerabilities, allowing organizations to implement preventative measures effectively.
Comparing Managed GSOC Services vs. In-house GSOC
While outsourcing offers many advantages, some organizations may prefer an in-house GSOC to maintain full control over their security operations. Having an internal team may provide a deeper level of customization, aligning the GSOC's processes precisely with the organization's unique security needs and industry regulations. This level of control can be especially crucial for companies operating in highly regulated sectors with specific compliance requirements.
However, it's essential to consider the higher initial investment and ongoing costs associated with building and maintaining an in-house GSOC. Apart from the considerable upfront expenses, businesses must allocate resources for training, upgrades, and staying informed about evolving threats. For smaller organizations or those without dedicated security expertise, this can be a significant challenge.
Additionally, GSOC providers like Global Guardian can stand up and run the equivalent of in-house GSOCs for a client. Rather than the business investing on-going time and resources in maintaining their own GSOC, a provider can bring their expertise to running such an operation to the business — mitigating many of the benefits that creating one’s own GSOC would ostensibly bring in terms of integration and collaboration. The team can work closely with other departments, fostering collaboration and facilitating faster information sharing during security incidents.
By leveraging a managed GSOC, businesses can take advantage of a flexible model, paying for the services they need as they need them. This scalability allows businesses to tailor their security operations to match their requirements, making it an attractive option for organizations of all sizes.
In summary, a GSOC or SOC can take several forms. It can be a third-party command center that integrates with your existing organizational structure and handles all requests and emergencies; it can also be an in-house team that you either set up yourself or invite aboard to work more directly with the broader business. Either way, you’ll want to make sure that you’re working with a best-in-class team, as the safety of your people and assets is always the paramount concern.
How to Choose a GSOC Service Provider
Choosing the right Global Security Operations Center (GSOC) service provider is a critical decision that can significantly impact your organization's security posture. This can include everything from how you plan and manage corporate travel, to monitoring your physical assets, to protecting your employees or leadership team when they’re at the office or on the go.
To ensure you make the best choice, consider the following key factors when evaluating potential GSOC service providers:
- Identify business requirements and goals: Clearly define your organization's security needs and objectives. Are you seeking 24-hour response and protection, asset surveillance, executive protection and transportation – or all of that, and more? Assess your current security infrastructure and determine what specific services and capabilities you require from a GSOC provider. Understanding your goals will help you find a provider whose offerings align with your unique security requirements.
- Evaluate the provider's expertise and experience: Research the track record, certifications, and experience of GSOC service providers you're considering. Look for a provider with a proven history of successfully managing GSOCs for organizations similar to yours. A reputable provider should have skilled security experts and analysts and a robust incident response process.
- Assess the provider's technology infrastructure: Ensure that the GSOC provider utilizes advanced security technologies and tools to effectively monitor and detect potential threats. Inquire about the systems and processes they employ to analyze security data and how they stay current with emerging cybersecurity trends.
- Conduct due diligence and reference checks: Before making a decision, request references from the GSOC service provider and contact their existing clients for feedback. This step will provide valuable insights into the provider's reputation, level of service, and responsiveness to customer needs.
- Ensure data privacy and security measures: Data security is of paramount importance when selecting a GSOC provider. Verify that the provider follows strict data protection practices and regulations (such as GDPR, the Gramm-Leach-Bliley (GLB) Act, or the HIPAA Privacy Rule), and employs robust security measures to safeguard your sensitive information.
Choosing the right GSOC service provider is an essential investment in your organization's security. Take the time to conduct thorough research, consider your specific needs, and assess potential providers' capabilities to ensure a successful and long-term partnership. A well-chosen GSOC service provider will offer enhanced protection, enabling your business to operate confidently in an ever-changing threat landscape.
One such reputable GSOC option worth considering is Global Guardian. With a proven track record in managing GSOCs for diverse clientele, Global Guardian offers comprehensive security solutions backed by a team of highly skilled security experts. Their advanced technology infrastructure, proactive threat detection, and round-the-clock monitoring ensure a robust defense against risks.
Whether you opt for Global Guardian or another trusted GSOC provider, remember that outsourcing your GSOC empowers your business with cost-effective access to specialized expertise and state-of-the-art security technologies. This strategic move allows you to focus on your core operations while having peace of mind that your people and assets are well-protected.
Standing by to Support
The Global Guardian team is standing by to support your security requirements. To learn more about our Global Security Operations Center services and how we've supported clients in the protection of their assets, employees, and digital infrastructure, complete the form below or call us at + 1 (703) 566-9463.