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September 11, 2021 By Davor Karafiloski

Integrating MITRE ATT&CK with Cloud SOAR to optimize SecOps and Incident Response

Today’s complex cyber threats leave no room for mediocrity. Security analysts must know who is attacking them, how the attacker gained access, what methods they used to infiltrate your systems, and what their next move might be.

However, modern cyber threats leave no recognizable patterns in their behavior, making threat anticipation harder than ever. To boost their threat hunting capabilities, SOC teams must implement advanced technologies and strategic techniques. And when it comes to solutions and techniques that bring next-gen value to security teams, SOAR and MITRE ATT&CK is the winning combination.

Combining MITRE ATT&CK and SOAR for improved SecOps

SOAR delivers the guns, MITRE ATT&CK teaches your analysts how to better use them. 

That’s the shortest explanation we can offer when it comes to defining how SOAR and MITRE ATT&CK work together. Now, before you understand how this combination works in practice, let’s delve into the core of SOAR and MITRE ATT&CK:

  • SOAR: SOAR stands for Security Orchestration, Automation and Response. This term was first coined by Gartner in 2017, and it resembles an assembly of several distinct capabilities that allow analysts to leverage machine learning and automation in order to accelerate their security processes and improve both efficiency and accuracy in threat remediation.

  • MITRE ATT&CK: The MITRE ATT&CK Framework is a combination of adversary tactics and techniques of specific real-world threats created with the goal of resolving the biggest cybersecurity threats modern organizations are facing.

MITRE ATT&CK provides a highly extensive knowledge base that helps organizations keep up with the likeliest forms of cyber attacks. MITRE introduced ATT&CK (Adversarial Tactics, Techniques & Common Knowledge) in 2013 as a way to help organizations learn the biggest threats that are circulating today’s modern cyber landscape.

By offering up-to-date tips, techniques, and tactics based on real-world observations, MITRE ATT&CK helps SOC teams pinpoint the deficiencies in their cybersecurity posture and identify potential areas for improvement. And MITRE’s matrix, which is comprised of 12 distinct techniques, provides an in-depth explanation of how adversaries might attack your organization.

MITRE ATT&CK helps users understand:

  • Adversary techniques

  • Best mitigation tactics

  • Incidents with related threat information

The MITRE ATT&CK framework describes a particular attack, shows a real-life example of how a similar attack unraveled and provides guidance to help you learn how to safely mitigate such an attack.

However, as helpful as MITRE’s knowledge is to SOC teams, simply learning expected adversarial behaviors and mitigation tactics is not enough. 

What good does it do to know how your attackers are going to potentially infiltrate your system and to have a plan for how to prevent the attack if you don’t have the means to stop them?

This is why SOC teams are advised to leverage the knowledge of MITRE ATT&CK by using SOAR.

The benefits of integrating MITRE techniques with SOAR

The wealth of useful information provided by MITRE ATT&CK is only useful if your SOC team is equipped with the tools and technologies necessary to nullify the biggest threats.

With that being said, there are several clear benefits that come out of combining both MITRE ATT&CK and SOAR:

  • Improved threat investigation: Integrating MITRE ATT&CK with SOAR allows analysts to use the database of techniques provided by MITRE and leverage SOAR’s advanced capabilities to search for relevant IOCs across endpoints, SIEM logs, and other points of entry to gather more insights and ultimately improve their threat hunting processes.

  • Respond faster: During the prevention or remediation phase, MITRE ATT&CK provides valuable insights that may show analysts how the attacker is attempting to infiltrate the systems and provide guidance on which mitigation strategies to use in the current situation, thus vastly improving the time needed to respond.

  • Data-driven decision-making: By integrating MITRE and SOAR, the insights of MITRE’s framework are available within the case, which means that analysts won’t have to jump from one system to another to gather intelligence. And by monitoring the MITRE ATT&CK trends and strategies, your analysts will be able to make data-driven decisions when it comes to protecting the perimeters and find areas for improvement.

  • Anticipate cyber threats: SOAR’s advanced playbooks and MITRE’s wealth of knowledge allow analysts to stay one step ahead of attackers and quickly validate potential threats, trigger automated playbooks, and seamlessly uncover any potential IOCs that may kill the attack before it materializes.

By learning the steps an attacker might take to launch a cyber attack and having the means necessary to nullify potential attacks, analysts will have the necessary knowledge and equipment to orchestrate a series of preemptive measures to nullify those attacks.

And below, we’ll show you how our very own Cloud SOAR leverages the integration with MITRE ATT&CK to allow our customers a more practical way of nullifying modern attacks.

The value of integrating Cloud SOAR and MITRE ATT&CK

We at Sumo Logic recognized the potential of integrating the MITRE ATT&CK into our own Cloud SOAR solution. By infusing the knowledge of MITRE’s framework into the conventional way of operating Cloud SOAR, we’ve provided our customers with new ways of enhancing their threat hunting capabilities.

Plus, the best part is that integrating MITRE ATT&CK into Cloud SOAR is a relatively simple process:

  • By creating a MITRE ATT&CK playbook on Cloud SOAR, MITRE information will automatically be attached to the case whenever an alert that includes MITRE ID is triggered.

  • Now, you will have access to threat information from the MITRE ATT&CK framework just as soon as an alert is triggered. You can also look at other cases where similar threat information was identified.

  • Ultimately, the automatically added MITRE threat information makes the job easier for analysts, as they will have everything they need within the playbook without having to hunt for information on other tools. This drastically speeds up the response time.

Furthermore, the MITRE integration allows users to have additional access to the types of attacks that are targeting their organization.

Also, by creating appropriate test incidents, you can activate enrichment actions that extract data from the MITRE ATT&CK framework and present it to the users for improved processes. That can be accomplished in a few very simple steps:

  • Get Technique - Technique details by identifier

  • Get Tactics - Tactic details by identifier

  • Get Associated Intrusions - Malware details by identifier

  • Get Mitigations - Mitigation details by identifier

Ultimately, there are no downsides to incorporating the MITRE ATT&CK framework into Cloud SOAR. It can only help your analysts understand better who is attacking them, how to find the most effective mitigation measures, and make well-informed, data-derived decisions.

MITRE ATT&CK enriches the playbook with relevant threat information that can oftentimes prove to be decisive in helping analysts remediate incidents. And by leveraging MITRE ATT&CK’s invaluable data and Cloud SOAR’s next-gen threat hunting capabilities, you can have a refined understanding of attacks and launch fast and efficient remediation processes.



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Davor Karafiloski

Davor Karafiloski

SEO and Content Marketing Specialist

More posts by Davor Karafiloski.

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