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Cyber Threat Intelligence Explained

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The pandemic has accelerated digital transformation across industries. As the world progresses through its online evolution, new-age technologies such as cloud computing, AI are making inroads into the daily operations of every enterprise. However, along with businesses, cybercriminals are also using these new-age technologies to become more sophisticated in launching their attacks.

Out of all the new-age technologies, cloud computing has emerged as the biggest enabler for the remote and hybrid workforce. However, it has unlocked many opportunities for cybercriminals to explore. As per a survey, 79% of organizations experienced at least one cloud data breach in the last 18 months.

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Also Read: Intelligence Driven Cybersecurity: A Predictive and Proactive Approach

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Confidential data leak does not only result in financial losses but also hurts a company’s image. One solution to this growing problem is to implement a strong cyber threat intelligence system.

What Is Cyber Threat Intelligence?

Cyber threat intelligence can be described as evidence-based knowledge about possible cyber threats and vulnerabilities within a system or a network. It enables informed decision making based on evidence and data collected through multiple events, series of events, or trends. In simple words, cyber threat intelligence entails data collection, processing, and analysis to understand a cyber criminal’s motives, targets, and attack behaviors.

Types of threat intelligence:

There are three levels of cyber threat intelligence – strategic, operational, and tactical.

  • Strategic Threat Intelligence – This is a broader term, it uses detailed analysis of trends and emerging risks to create a general picture of the overall threat landscape.
  • Tactical Threat Intelligence – This offers more specific details on cyber criminals’ tactics, techniques, and procedures. It helps in understanding and mitigation of risks.
  • Operational Threat Intelligence – This does an in-detail analysis of a specific cyber-attack. It enables the incident response teams to understand a particular attack’s nature, intent, and possible timing.

Benefits of using Cyber threat intelligence:

  • Enables faster response to incidents – Cyber threat intelligence improves incident response by automatically identifying and dismissing false positives, enriching alerts with real-time context, and comparing information from internal and external sources.
  • Improves vulnerability management – An effective vulnerability management program continuously monitors, analyzes, and assesses risk in order to understand and highlight gaps in the security structure that could result in a data breach. A cyber threat intelligence system constantly monitors the security structure to identify vulnerabilities and mitigate threats.
  • Improves the efficiency of security teams Cyber threat intelligence allows security leaders to effectively manage risk by balancing finite resources against the need to secure their organizations from ever-evolving threats. It enables the security teams to map the threat landscape, calculate risk, and give security personnel the intelligence and context to make better and faster decisions.
  • Lowers cost – The slower your threat response is, the more a data breach will cost your organization. By reducing the time to respond, threat intelligence can help to eliminate the regulatory and legal costs associated with a data breach.

Cyber threat intelligence cannot be treated as a one-time activity. An effective security program requires continuous monitoring and evaluation; hence threat intelligence need to function like a cycle. Having access to comprehensive threat intelligence can help organizations to keep critical assets secure by streamlining cyber risk management.

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