Big Data and Cyber Security – A double whammy for hackers


Businesses are growing more digitized today. As this happens, cybersecurity threats are rising as well. Companies are placed at an increasing risk, which is why they need help from big data analysis. In fact, KuppingerCole conducted a study entitled “Big Data and Information Security.” study looks in-depth at current deployment levels and the benefits of big data security analytics solutions, as well as the challenges they face.

The Rise in Cybersecurity Threats Today

Recently, the notion of a corporate security perimeter has disappeared since more companies are adopting cloud and mobile services. Now cyber threat intelligence helps in detecting the threats within an organization. This is because traditional tools are growing outdated. Technology, however, helps businesses monitor and detect any malicious activities within their corporate network today.

This paradigm shift is a good thing because today’s cybercriminals are growing more advanced too. Many times they’re actually working as part of an “inside job.” Several recent large-scale security breaches have demonstrated this. They’ve also shown us that it’s time we ramp up our security instead of depending on traditional approaches.

Unfortunately, there are some challenges that stand in business’ way here. These are important to pay attention to since malware attacks are growing in volume and complexity. According to Data Meer, the two biggest challenges include:

  • Data volume: SophosLabs is responsible for cyber security today. They have to analyze the more than 300,000 potentially malicious files that are reported to them daily. With so many reports to look into, it’s impossible to keep up with all of them. This places businesses at danger.
  • Scalability: Unfortunately, SQL-based tools and infrastructure don’t scale well. They’re also quite costly to maintain.

How Big Data Analytics Fits In

With all the cybersecurity threats that happen here, businesses are fortunate to have big data analytics step in to help them. It will improve the detection of such threats. There are several ways in which this is done, including:

  • Identifying changing use patterns
  • Executing complex analysis so quickly it’s close to real-time
  • Performing complex correlations across various data sources ranging from server and application logs to network events and user activities

For any of these things to happen though, advanced analytics beyond the simple rule-based approaches must occur. Your business will need to analyze a lot of data – both current and historic. Since big data analysis combines current analytics with security, it makes your business more cyber resilient. Of course, this is something that’s “new” today. In fact, you can think of it as the security industry’s response to the cyber challenges it’s facing today. These are beneficial because they can collect, store and analyze huge amounts of security data across your whole enterprise in real-time. This is then enhanced by additional context data and external threat intelligence. It’s analyzed with various correlation algorithms that detect anomalies and identify any possible malicious activities.

Unlike traditional solutions these tools operate in near real-time. They’ll send you some security alerts. These are ranked by severity. Additional forensic details are also available, helping to simplify your security analyst’s job. Now they can quickly and easily detect and mitigate any type of cyberattack. The combination of big data analysis and cybersecurity makes most threats unsuccessful.

All of this is a part of the new PDR paradigm that cybersecurity experts are teaching today – prevent, detect, and respond fast. With big data analytics this is indeed possible. It’s now easier to overcome cyber challenges. In fact, this is something that the healthcare industry has really come to appreciate. The technology research firm, Gartner Inc. says that at least 25% of large, global, healthcare facilities have adopted big data analytics for at least one security or fraud detection use case today. Another independent analyst and consultancy firm, Ovum, advises businesses that they really do need to incorporate big data too. They say this is an important way to fight security threats.

Rethinking CyberSecurity

Bi Survey says that big data analytics gives us a reason to rethink cybersecurity today. They believe that while analytics is the key element in leveraging cyber resilience attacks are growing more persistent and advanced in nature. As this happens, there’s a new, simple fact at play: Every business needs to protect itself against many different types of attacks. This is because, unfortunately, an attacker only needs one successful attempt to ruin your business. For this reason, you need to rethink all of your cybersecurity concepts and move towards the PDR paradigm.

Fortunately, this is something that most companies already realize. While they know that data is what cyber attackers are attempting to steal, these companies are also learning that data can save their business too. It’s a matter of knowing how to use it correctly. With this in mind, here are some things that data analytics can do to combat cyber threats today:

  • It can identify anomalies in how a device is behaving. This is important because an employee’s device could be used as a Trojan horse. In layman’s terms, this means the device could be used to access and steal data. Fortunately, this is something that you can stop by using big data analytics.
  • It can identify anomalies in employee and contractor behavior. So, when an employee attempts to download large amounts of data, you can not only detect it but you can also stop it.
  • It can detect anomalies in the network such as new threats without known signatures. By looking at many different data attributes big data can understand the nature of various attacks.
  • It can analyze data to assess network vulnerabilities and risks. This allows you to eliminate serious potential sources of risk, especially when dealing with customer-identifying information.

With the growing number of cyber threats today, it’s time to look into big data analysis. When combined with cybersecurity your business will stay safe. This is because the combination of these two things is like a double whammy, which is good news for you as a business owner.