How To Become a SOC Analyst in 2022
Modern security teams rely on Security Operations Centers Analysts (SOCs). Cyber security analysts detect and respond to cyberattacks as they happen, acting as a front line of cyber defense. Let us answer some of your questions about being a successful SOC analyst!
First off, what does a SOC Analyst do?
Responding to incidents involving cyber security is the primary responsibility of SOC analysts. They are responsible for reporting cyber threats and any changes necessary are implemented to safeguard the organization.
A SOC analyst's duties include:
1. Analyzing threats and vulnerabilities.
2. Identify, document, and report on emerging trends in information security (InfoSec).
3. Detection and remediation of vulnerabilities in hardware and software that were previously unknown.
4. Creating a disaster recovery plan.
A SOC analyst is considered the last line of defense, and they typically work with security managers and engineers to create a large security team. A company's chief information security officer (CISO) typically oversees and is reported by SOC analysts.
Main Responsibilities of a SOC Analyst
Sounds fun, but how do you know that you are the SOC Analyst material?
If you have these must-have skills, you are the perfect material for being a SOC Analyst!
1. Incident Response: A breach must be tackled in a way that reduces the impact of a breach at that moment and any in the future. Here comes a SOCs cue!
2. Technical Forensics: SOCs need to be familiar with the methods used in computer forensics, like, data collection, analysis, and reporting.
3. Network Protection: Defending the network is a must. This involves monitoring, uncovering, and analyzing potential threats. To maintain secure network traffic and detect suspicious activities, SOC analysts need to possess the right skills.
4. Reverse Engineering: At a higher level of tiers, a SOC must also be able to decode and reverse-engineer malware.
5. Ethical Hacking: To keep an organization safe from attacks, a SOC needs to be able to detect threats and report vulnerabilities. Pen-testing systems and web applications to track vulnerabilities should be a breeze for SOCs.
Ah, we mentioned something about tiers in the previous section, what do we mean by that?
Uh-huh. We did. Like any other cybersecurity job position, being a SOC also comes with more power (and of course, more money!) for a certain level of experience. The analysts at a security operations center are typically organized into tiers:
1. Tier 1 Support Security Analyst: Security analysts receive and review alerts daily at Tier 1 support. Identifies relevance and urgency of the latest SIEM alerts. Performs triage to identify whether the incident is a security breach. Configures monitoring tools to monitor security incidents.
2. Tier 2 Support Security Analyst: Taking care of real security incidents is the role of a Tier 2 support security analyst. These analysts evaluate the extent of the impact of tier 1 analysts' findings using threat intelligence. Checks the status and configuration of affected systems. They also use rigorous threat intelligence to track down the attacker, determine what kind of attack is at hand, and data has been impacted. Designing and implementing a recovery and contingency plan is also their job.
3. Tier 3 Security Analyst: Analysts at Tier 3 have more experience than analysts at Tier 2. Work on scathing incidents. Assesses the organization's resilience and isolates weak points to ensure that they have been addressed. Tier 1 and Tier 2 report to these analysts. Discovers what unknown security gaps and vulnerabilities and threats have entered the network.
4. Incident Response Manager: These handle all topics related to containing, isolating, and analyzing incidents. They also make all stakeholders aware of any requirements that pertain to high severity incidents.
You are in. We won you over! What do I need to do to become a SOC analyst, you ask!
Computer science or computer engineering degrees are common requirements for SOC analysts, as experience working with IT and networking.
Numerous employers also recognize or require the following certifications:
A candidate who achieves CompTIA Security+ certification is equipped for the entire lifecycle of security in an IT environment. Conforms with ISO 17024 and is compliant with US Department of Defense 8570.
EC-Council Certified SOC Analyst (CSA)
It provides entry-level and intermediate skills to Tier 1 and Tier 2 SOC analysts through a three-day course.
EC-Council Certified Ethical Hacker
Budding ethical hackers study the latest attack vectors, the tools used by hackers and penetration testers, and the techniques involved in malware analysis with the EC-Council's Certified Ethical Hacker course.
Some of these certifications might require passing specific exams!
Working as a SOC analyst opens up a world of possibilities. Your future is bright with this rewarding career path. Get started now!