Is Siloed Data Your Weakest Link?
How data sharing strengthens collaboration between NetOps and SecOps teams—and why that’s critical.
In today’s rapidly evolving digital landscape, where cyberthreats are becoming increasingly sophisticated, robust cybersecurity measures are more critical than ever. Network operations (NetOps) and security operations (SecOps) teams play pivotal roles in maintaining an organization’s security posture and ensuring the smooth functioning of its network infrastructure.
Although these two teams traditionally have distinct responsibilities, the importance of NetOps and SecOps collaboration and data sharing cannot be overstated. In fact, many security breaches are discovered when operations or applications become slow and then a closer look reveals there has been a security breach. This blog explores the benefits of sharing data between NetOps and SecOps teams and how the practice helps enterprises avoid common challenges that can arise from siloed data.
The Benefits of Data Sharing
When NetOps and SecOps teams work together by sharing data, enterprises can reap several advantages, including the following:
- Faster threat detection and response. The first and perhaps most obvious benefit of data sharing between NetOps and SecOps teams is the acceleration of threat detection and response. When these teams pool their network traffic data and threat intelligence, they can swiftly identify potential security breaches and swiftly investigate them. This collaborative effort enables a proactive approach to mitigating threats, reducing the risk of substantial damage or data loss.
- Improved network performance. A key challenge faced by NetOps teams is ensuring optimal network performance. By sharing security data, these teams gain insights into traffic patterns that might be causing network congestion or performance issues. This information empowers them to take immediate action, optimizing network performance and guaranteeing that critical applications receive the necessary bandwidth for smooth operation.
- Enhanced visibility and monitoring. Sharing data creates a holistic view of network activities, granting SecOps teams the ability to provide NetOps with detailed visibility into traffic patterns. This collaborative monitoring approach allows both teams to identify anomalies, unusual behavior, or suspicious activity promptly. Together, they can proactively detect potential threats and performance bottlenecks, further strengthening the organization's security posture.
- Compliance monitoring and reporting. Adhering to industry regulations and internal policies is a fundamental requirement for organizations of all sizes. Data sharing between NetOps and SecOps teams streamlines the process of compliance monitoring and reporting. SecOps can offer insights into sensitive data flows and security-related violations, while NetOps teams can contribute network performance data necessary for regulatory reporting. This ensures a unified understanding of compliance requirements and minimizes the risk of violations.
- Enhanced collaboration and communication. Effective collaboration and communication are crucial for aligning the goals and objectives of NetOps and SecOps teams. By sharing data, both teams gain a deeper understanding of each other’s challenges and objectives. This shared knowledge fosters collaboration, allowing teams to work synergistically toward a common goal: ensuring the security, reliability, and performance of the organization's network infrastructure.
Avoiding Common Challenges Via Data Sharing
Collaboration and data sharing between NetOps and SecOps teams play a pivotal role in helping enterprises overcome several key challenges, among them:
- Siloed data. The most significant challenge that data sharing between NetOps and SecOps teams addresses is the issue of siloed data. When information is compartmentalized within individual teams, the organization loses sight of the bigger picture. Data sharing breaks down these barriers, ensuring that relevant information is accessible to all stakeholders and leading to better collaboration and more informed decision-making.
- Incomplete analysis. Without access to comprehensive datasets, both NetOps and SecOps teams may struggle to conduct thorough network traffic analysis. Sharing data fills these knowledge gaps, equipping teams with a complete understanding of network activities. This empowers them to make well-informed decisions and respond effectively to emerging threats.
- Timely response. Rapid response to security incidents is critical for minimizing potential damage. Data sharing facilitates quick identification and response to potential threats, reducing response times. With access to real-time information from both teams, organizations can more effectively neutralize threats before they escalate.
- Limited visibility. Limited visibility into network activities can hinder both NetOps and SecOps teams. Data sharing amplifies their visibility by providing a comprehensive view of network traffic. This newfound clarity enables proactive identification of risks and network or application performance issues, allowing teams to take timely action.
- Compliance violations. A misaligned understanding of compliance requirements can lead to unintentional violations. Data sharing ensures that NetOps and SecOps teams have a shared comprehension of regulatory and policy mandates. This alignment minimizes the risk of compliance breaches and potential penalties.
Cyberthreats continue to evolve, and collaboration between NetOps and SecOps teams is essential for maintaining a robust security posture. By sharing data and working together, organizations can enjoy faster network threat detection and response, improved network performance, enhanced visibility, streamlined compliance monitoring, and stronger collaboration. These benefits collectively contribute to a more secure and efficient network infrastructure, safeguarding an organization's sensitive data and maintaining its reputation. Breaking down data silos and embracing a collaborative approach is not just a best practice—it's a necessity in today's digital landscape.
How NETSCOUT Helps
NETSCOUT believes in achieving comprehensive visibility without borders by enabling a single source of smart network-derived data, which we call Smart Data, for more efficient service assurance and cybersecurity. With a single source of shared data, both NetOps and SecOps can view the same network-derived data, with a lens on network and application performance via nGeniusONE and a lens on cybersecurity via Omnis Cyber Intelligence, and can collaborate and quickly act on that data to prevent further damage to the organization.