June 2, 2015

Sophisticated Security Intelligence Solution For Hidden Cyber Threats

By Penny Swift

Niara Unveils Sophisticated Security Intelligence Solution

A sophisticated new security intelligence solution, that combines forensics with advanced security data analytics, was launched by Californian-based Cyber security startup, Niara today.

The first of its kind, the Niara Security Intelligence Solution has been designed to give security teams an unparalleled view of security data from disparate sources, enabling them to uncover, investigate and quickly respond to hidden cyber threats within organizations. Built on big data architecture, it analyzes disparate data that identifies security weaknesses that often lead to multistage cyber attacks.

security-attacks

Announcing its one-of-a-kind product, Niara stated it was launching “from stealth,” and was immediately able to deliver the solution for “cloud, on-premise and hybrid deployment.” Prior to emerging from stealth, the company stated it has raised $29.4 million in capital for the project.

Business organizations increasingly find themselves under attack, and because of the sophisticated nature of these attacks, it usually takes months to detect them. This, says Niara, is quite simply because the monitoring and response tools that are currently available do not give total access to the disparate data silos within organizations’ networks. This, in turn, results in “inadequate visibility into an organization’s threat exposure,” leaving it extremely vulnerable to compromise.

The problem, says Niara CEO Sriram Ramachandran, is that perimeter-based security systems are becoming increasingly porous in the face of the sophistication and growing number of threats.
Existing monitoring solutions are limited by scalability challenges and a reliance on rules-based approaches that do not work with unknown threats,” he told CloudTweaks. “Advanced threats are routinely discovered weeks or months after the initial infection, and incident response capabilities are limited. Although many enterprises have made large investments to bolster their security posture, they are drowning in alert white noise with limited investigation context.”

In fact, according to a recent report released by the Ponemon Institute, on average it takes retail organizations more than six months to discover advanced threats to their businesses, and financial services firms (which generally spend more on cyber security tools annually), more than three months.

Key Findings Among Financial Services Firms

Advanced Threats

  • 71 percent view technologies that provide intelligence about networks and traffic as most promising at stopping or minimizing advance threats during the seven phases of the Kill Chain
  • 45 percent have implemented incident response procedures
  • 43 percent have established threat sharing with other companies or Government entities

DDoS Attacks

  • 55 percent consider DDoS attacks as an advanced threat
  • 48 percent ‘Strongly Agree’ or ‘Agree’ that they are effective in containing DDoS attacks
  • 45 percent have established threat sharing with other companies or government entities to minimize or contain the impact of DDoS attacks

Key Findings Among Retail Firms

Advanced Threats

  • 64 percent view technologies that provide intelligence about networks and traffic as most promising at stopping or minimizing advance threats during the seven phases of the Kill Chain
  • 34 percent have implemented incident response procedures
  • 17 percent have established threat sharing with other companies or government entities

DDoS Attacks

  • 50 percent consider DDoS attacks as an advanced threat
  • 39 percent firms ‘Strongly Agree’ or ‘Agree’ that they are effective in containing DDoS attacks
  • 13 percent have established threat sharing with other companies or government entities to minimize or contain the impact of DDoS attacks

Niara’s Security Intelligence Solution addresses all of these challenges by combining data from disparate data sources and converging advanced analytics and forensics techniques to enable the discovery and investigation of advanced threats, said Ramachandran.

User Behavior Analytics (UBA) is emerging as an integral piece of the security intelligence puzzle, but its scope must be expanded to include network flows and packets – not just logs. An enterprise must also understand device and application behavior to get the most comprehensive view of its risk posture – the Niara Security Intelligence Solution calls this an entity profile, and takes a broader view of all these requirements, rather than focus on just one aspect.”

The new Niara Security Intelligence Solution takes a holistic approach to solving sophisticated cyber threats. It does this by integrating “deep forensics” with both behavioral and raw, data-level analytics to enable the discovery and identification of “malicious insiders.” It also enables security teams to uncover threats and other incidents quickly and more easily. It does this by:
Operating on the full range of disparate data sources to uncover risky behaviors and threats that typically remain undetected when only log-based analytics are used.

Taking an entity-centric view of all possible threats, monitoring devices, applications, and users, to provide security teams with an in-depth overview of the organization’s risk posture.
Providing a comprehensive, analytical forensic trail with one-click access, thus simplifying and accelerating incident investigation and threat discovery.

Leveraging data stores without needing to duplicate or recreate them. Niara is backed by NEA, Index Ventures, and Venrock.

By Penny Swift

Penny Swift

Penny has been a professional writer since 1984 - Penny has written more than 30 general trade books and eight college books. She has also written countless newspaper and magazine articles for: Skills on Site, Popular Mechanics (SA) and SA Conference, Exhibitions and Events Guide.

Penny has a BA in Social Sciences and currently resides in Cape Town, South Africa.
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