Delivering (and Measuring) Incident Response ROI

By Walker Banerd June 20, 2017 incident-response, security-orchestration-automation-response

Let’s be honest: every vendor talks about how their incident response platform (IRP) can save you time, lower your costs, and reduce security risks. And they’re probably right; IRPs are valuable tools for almost any organization. However, there are several distinct approaches to designing an IRP, which means that ROI can differ significantly between platforms.

When many vendors talk about the gains they offer, they’re usually talking about automation and orchestration, which refers to the initial detection and response coordination phase of an incident lifecycle. There are some great benefits to be found in this phase, but it does not represent the entirety of what an IRP can do. Significant returns can be found by investing in other aspects of the process—and many IRPs are missing out.

Incident Response Automation and Orchestration

Let’s start with what you probably already know: automation and orchestration during incident response save time and money, and reduce security risk. There are a number of ways this is achieved, including:

Playbooks and scripts, which give you consistent repeatable workflows for common incident types, making fast and effective response the standard.

Automated enrichment of incident records with contextual data, such as IP lookups and file reputation, helps you quickly identify high-risk incidents and dismiss false positives, and automated correlation with threat intelligence and past incidents helps identify connections and accelerate triage.

Features like these reduce burden on human analysts, increasing speed and reducing operating costs. When applied effectively, automation and orchestration can make your incident response process well-informed and risk-averse. These are valuable components to have in your IRP, but many vendors make the mistake of stopping there. There is a whole other world of time and cost savings to be made during the other phases of the incident response process.

Beyond Automation and Orchestration – Case Management

A robust case management system—which is missing from many IRPs—is critical to maximizing your ROI. Case management supports deeper investigations and creates a feedback loop to your detection and response processes, which enables rapid improvements and savings.

Here are some other ways to use case management functionality to get better ROI out of an IRP:

Automatic reporting and alerts across teams and between personnel, including communication with senior leadership. Having a platform that can be configured to share the necessary information to keep all of your stakeholders in the loop frees up your analysts to focus on security.

Root cause analysis takes you beyond the initial infection vector to identify the root cause of an incident and coordinate corrective action. Most IRPs do not have a strong system for root cause analysis, but it is the only true way to eliminate recurrence and reduce long-term risk. It can also lead to drastically lowered incident volumes, sometimes by as much as 90%.

Even the best systems can’t compensate for ineffective employees and poorly organized investigations. Personnel and investigation management give you insight into the people and processes that make up your incident response function. These features can be used to assess caseloads, view completed and open tasks, and identify underperforming employees. Associated reporting can reveal bottlenecks in your procedures, as well as other negative trends that you want to quickly reverse.

D3 Reporting for Tracking ROI

Security teams know that even when it’s obvious to you how much value you’re getting from a software solution, proving that ROI to senior leadership can be its own challenge. Demonstrable ROI is important in order to get the budget and approvals you need to support your incident response program.

This is why D3 offers a variety of reports that provide clear metrics on exactly what your incident response team is achieving. For example, a current D3 customer uses the following reports to track the value they are deriving from the D3 incident management platform:

  • Average time to close an incident
  • Overview of all open tickets—can be applied to customizable timeframes, such as 7 or 30 days.
  • False positives vs. true positives—how many closed tickets turned out to be legitimate incidents. Can be viewed over different timeframes, such as weekly, monthly, or yearly.

D3 provides maximum ROI with automation, orchestration, case management, root cause analysis, reporting features, and more. 100+ of Fortune 500 organizations use D3’s proven Incident Management Platform to build incident response plans, connect with third party technologies and apply data-driven decisions across an enterprise-wide vision of incidents, investigations, and risk. To learn more, click on the button below to talk to one of our incident response experts and schedule a demo today.

Walker Banerd

Walker Banerd

Walker is the Communications Manager at D3. He leads the writing of D3's blog, as well as white papers, industry briefings, and other thought leadership. Walker's expertise is translating technical concepts into easily understandable content, with a focus on software, cybersecurity, and compliance solutions.


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