What Is Threat Intelligence and How Does It Work? | TechBuzz

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As the threat posed by cyberattacks continues to increase, businesses of all sizes are taking notice. However, one activity that many companies continue to skip is threat intelligence.

The specific threats that a business faces vary widely depending on its size and its industry. Threat intelligence is responsible for helping an organization put resources into defending against the right ones.

So, what is threat intelligence, and how does it work? Let’s dive in and learn everything about it.

What Is Threat Intelligence?

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Threat Intelligence refers to the collection of information that a business can use to prevent cyberattacks. It involves looking at both the actors currently carrying out cyberattacks and the methods which they employ.

A company can obtain this information from both internal and external sources. Internally, a business might look at cyberattacks that they have been victims of in the past. Or, they may go through their logs for indications of attempted attacks.

External information comes from a variety of different sources. It can be as simple as following the latest cybersecurity news and keeping up to date with how other companies have been attacked. Or, it can involve paying for information from cybersecurity vendors.

A business can analyze all of this information in an attempt to prepare for upcoming attacks.

What Benefits Do Threat Intelligence Offer?

Threat Intelligence, when performed correctly, offers a range of benefits:

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  • It allows business owners and cybersecurity professionals to keep up to date on the latest threats and actors.
  • The information gathered can be shared across a business so that everyone is aware of all active threats.
  • It puts current attacks in context by allowing suspicious network activity to be better understood.
  • It allows steps to be taken immediately to protect against all threats identified.
  • It can prevent cyberattacks from being successful.
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Who Should Use Threat Intelligence?

Threat intelligence can be utilized by any business regardless of its size. Small companies usually have limited resources and cannot protect against all threats. Threat intelligence helps them prioritize the most likely and dangerous threats.

Large organizations often have the budget necessary to defend against all types of threats. But threat intelligence is still helpful in this scenario because it can make cybersecurity departments much more efficient.

How Does Threat Intelligence Work?

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Threat intelligence is a lengthy process that typically involves six phases. It’s important to note that this is only a broad outline. The specific steps taken depend on the size of a business and the potential threats faced.

Requirements

The first phase requires that the goals of threat intelligence are understood. You might write down the assets that need to be protected, the types of threats your business is likely to encounter, and what information may help prevent them. This may also involve understanding who is likely to attack your business and why. The output is usually a series of questions that you aim to answer.

Collection

In this phase, all the necessary information is collected. This should include information that you already have, such as network logs. But it will also require additional investigation from both publicly available websites and possibly paid consultation. Information sharing with other businesses facing similar threats can also prove invaluable.

Processing

The information collected, such as the output of logs, isn’t particularly useful without context. Adding context and arranging the data in easy-to-use formats are all part of the processing phase. This may involve putting the data into spreadsheets, creating graphs, and discarding any information which isn’t helpful.

Analysis

In the analysis phase, all the information collected is used to answer the questions set out in the Requirements phase. A company may also use this information to formulate appropriate responses to threats that are now better understood. Changes to security procedures may be implemented now or discussed with other parties.

Dissemination

Unless a business is very small, threat intelligence will need to be disseminated to other people to be valuable. This may involve providing the IT or cybersecurity team with your conclusions. The information may also be used as justification for why a specific security proposal needs to be paid for.

Feedback

Threat Intelligence isn’t always appropriately created at the first attempt. Threats are constantly changing, and the information needed to tackle even those that don’t change isn’t always fully understood. The feedback phase is therefore necessary. It allows those who receive the intelligence to provide feedback and request changes where necessary. At this point, the process starts all over again with a better understanding of the intelligence needs.

Threat Intelligence Use Cases


Threat Intelligence provides a better understanding of what’s out there. There are many ways that this information can be used.

Understanding Threat Alerts

Many businesses use software to alert them of suspicious activity on their network. Threat intelligence helps them gain a better understanding of these alerts and determine which ones require action.

Faster Incident Response

The effectiveness of incident response often relies on speed. If a network intrusion occurs, the potential damage is dependent on how long the intruder is allowed to remain within the network. Threat intelligence plays a vital role in recognizing that attacks are occurring and increasing the speed at which the company stops them.

Vulnerability Management

Threat intelligence includes research on the latest software vulnerabilities. While all software should be patched, some businesses fail to do so. Threat intelligence ensures that if a piece of software has a known vulnerability, somebody at the company is aware of it.

Partner Analysis

Companies are often attacked not because of their own mistakes but because one of their business partners has been compromised. Threat intelligence can be used to potentially avoid this scenario. If a service that your company relies on has been hacked, threat intelligence should alert you to this fact.

Threat Intelligence Is Important for All Businesses

The cybersecurity landscape is ever-changing. Both the malicious actors and the methods that they use are constantly evolving. Threat intelligence provides the information necessary to develop an effective defense.

Many small businesses don’t invest in this type of cybersecurity, which is a huge mistake. If resources are limited, it’s arguably even more important to put those resources to the best possible use.


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I am admin of techbuzz.asia blog & I provide tech-related news. As a part of my hobby, I make content related to technology and gadgets reviews too. I love to be a content creator apart from it, I am a full-time employee in an MNC company and manage blogs systematically. You can mail me at [email protected]

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