Fighting danger with data: when Big Data meets IT security posted on Tue, February 05 2013 in Analytics, Big Data, Data Scientists

Seeing as the digital threat landscape is evolving in a fast and furious manner and traditional security models are no longer up to speed, a growing number of software vendors now realize that a different approach to protection is needed. The good news is that we should be seeing some exciting Big Data analytics announcements this year in the IT security sector, to boost performance of network monitoring systems and enable faster detection of cyber attacks. That is what industry experts are expecting anyway. One such announcement has, in fact, already been made. EMC’s security division RSA is merging its security technologies with Big Data analytics to further improve its attack detection and analysis capabilities with a long-term vision.

This new RSA Security Analytics system offers RSA’s traditional reporting and alerting, event processing and network forensics investigative tools along with full content indexing engines to provide free text search. The latter feature will permit extensive data mining, metadata tagging and long-term intensive analysis. The idea behind this combination of traditional protection tools with masses of Big Data is that the latter will offer a keener understanding of all threats and the best corresponding defenses. RSA Security Analytics is designed to distil the massive amount of data available into an effective early warning system which companies can then use to mount a quicker and more agile response.

According to EMC RSA Executive VP Arthur Coviello “in light of the damaging disruptions companies face at the hands of DDoSers, the need to analyze Big Data for a better picture of a company's security situation is more important than ever”. Coviello feels that there has been a notable shift in the protection landscape: it used to be that RSA’s customers were mostly worried about data breaches that led to the theft of sensitive information. However, lately, customers in the banking sector are more worried about hacktivists and the disruption their politically-motivated attacks may have on the bottom line. Their biggest fear at the moment – and that of many other kinds of organizations - is the downtime caused by DDoS attacks, which would result in serious revenue losses.

The ultimate goal of the fruitful marriage between IT security and Big Data - flavored with behavioral analysis and long-term data storage – is to actually predict potential attacks and quickly pinpoint and eliminate any weak points in corporate networks. Big Data, Big Safety: it’s just around the corner!

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