Using Security-as-a-Service to Help Customers Combat Threats

By Jeannette Jarvis | March 12, 2018

The cyberattacks that organizations face are increasingly sophisticated, requiring around the clock surveillance and threat monitoring by a skilled security team. To keep their data secure and meet various compliance standards, your customers are deploying point security solutions and striving to enforce security policies across the organization.

However, these policies must be informed by the most up-to-date threat intelligence as well as knowledge of the constantly evolving threat trends and attack vectors being targeted at them in order to be effective. Without the ability to monitor and assess every security incident, networks are open to breaches and cybercriminals are able to get ahead.

To mitigate these increasing cyber risks without over-extending limited IT resources, the use of Security-as-a-Service must be considered. 

Evolving Security Threats

Cybercriminals are constantly advancing the strategies they use to attack your customers’ networks. For example, organizations can no longer only focus on perimeter defenses because cybercriminals are capitalizing on AI, botnets, and new, unique malware variations to exploit new attack vectors and new weaknesses in your growing attack surface. Cybercriminals are also leveraging automation to execute rapid attacks against network vulnerabilities, giving them the chance to quickly slip past defenses before security teams can respond.

Additionally, the ability to provide dynamic, real-time updates to the malicious code that controls botnets, such as Reaper, are allowing attackers to target networks with greater precision by expanding their ability to exploit multiple vulnerabilities simultaneously. Moreover, we are seeing signs that today’s advanced botnets are likely to give way to smart hivenets in the coming year that allow individually-compromised devices to work together as an intelligent system that can share attack intelligence in real time. Finally, malware is constantly evolving in an attempt to evade signature-based defenses and sandboxing, with FortiGuard Labs uncovering 17,671 unique malware variants in Q4 of 2017 alone.

In addition to advances in attack technologies being developed by high-tech cybercriminals, malware and ransomware attacks have never been easier to carry out by less technical criminals through malware-as-a-service solutions that are easily available for purchase on the dark web. 

Finally, as cybercriminals develop new strategies and various ways to target the network, your customers are actively expanding their attack surface to keep up with digital transformation, consumer demands with IoT, cloud, web applications, and more. And, cybercriminals are paying attention and planning accordingly.

Cybersecurity Challenges Facing Your Customers

The current cybersecurity skill gap has made it difficult for organizations of any size to find qualified employees with the necessary cybersecurity background needed to protect their digital assets from advanced threats. Without these professionals in place, however, it is impossible for them to monitor every security incident and perform the analysis to determine threat trends they must be aware of using traditional security techniques and strategies.

Aside from the challenge your customers face in terms of finding qualified individuals, even building out the in-house security operation centers (SOCs) needed to adequately monitor, detect, and respond to threats can be prohibitively expensive for many organizations, requiring increasing amounts of security infrastructure in addition to trained personnel.

This is where Security-as-a-Service can demonstrate real value to your customers. 

How Security-as-a-Service Can Protect Customer Networks

Security-as-a-Service has been gaining popularity as a way to ensure defense-in-depth across distributed network environments despite the security skills shortage and growing cyberthreat challenge. It works similarly to SaaS, with organizations paying on a subscription basis for the service – with a recent survey noting that Security-as-a-Service will account for 79 percent of IT budgets in the coming year. Security services ensure that organizations of all sizes are able to consistently receive the security support they need, whether security infrastructure updates, or threat intelligence and threat trend analysis, from experienced security professionals with visibility into global threat trends.

In addition, the use of security services ensures that customers are continually fortifying and refining their networks with input from security experts on a regular basis. 

FortiGuard Security Services

Fortinet’s Security Services extend to your customers the powerful resources of FortiGuard Labs, providing the most recent threat intelligence and real-time incident response possible. FortiGuard Labs is made up of highly-experienced security professionals who, combined with advanced AI-based threat detection and analysis tools, spend countless hours examining threat trends to determine the most likely areas of attack, which then putting in place those resources needed to preemptively stop them, with an average of 91,000 malware programs being neutralized per minute.

FortiGuard Security Services also gives your customers visibility into our findings from over 450,000 hours of global threat research per year, gathered from Fortinet devices deployed in key points and production networks across the globe. This means that in addition to local intelligence gathered directly from your customers’ local networks, they will also be tuned to the global trends threatening the security of their network, allowing them to update infrastructure and policies accordingly. In addition to real-time threat intelligence, these security services also include intrusion prevention, web filtering, anti-spam, web application and network controls, and more.

These in-depth security controls, combined with real-time threat intelligence, ensure and enable the fast response times that are now necessary to keep pace with today’s cyberattacks, including reducing dwell time. Furthermore, these services are designed to be seamlessly integrated into your customers existing SOC infrastructure. 

Final Thoughts

Complex cyber threats require your customers to shorten their response time or risk a data breach. However, the current skills gap has made it difficult for many organizations to build teams with the necessary expertise or deploy all the resources they may need. Security-as-a-Service offers a solution to this challenge, giving customers access to the threat intelligence expertise they need in a more cost effective, accessible way.

Access the most recent Fortinet FortiGuard Labs Quarterly Threat Report here.

View our video with more context for CISOs and security leaders below: