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What is UEBA ?

Advanced cyberattacks and persistent vulnerabilities to your business frequently rely on compromised credentials or coercion of people to do actions that vandalize enterprise security. To detect these types of threats, you’ll need a robust solution that allows analysts to swiftly distinguish between regular and unusual network behavior. The UEBA module has the fastest time-to-value in the industry, allowing for same-day deployment and quick insights.

User and Entity Behavior Analytics (UEBA) is the application of machine learning and security research to discover when users or entities are engaging in unusual and unsafe ways. It tracks users’ interactions with data, systems, and apps to identify and attribute threats so that security analysts can respond swiftly. UEBA uses comprehensive context information to enrich security data. Context data improves event detection accuracy, decreases false positives, and allows for context-based searching and threat hunting. Machine learning, behavioral analytics, and threat modeling are all used by UEBA’s analytics engine to detect your top threats. As a result, analysts are continually on the lookout for your most critical security incidents.

According to Infosecurity Outlook, people have specified patterns of behavior, and behavioral analytics is about how we take those patterns and start to extract usable information from them.

UEBA is being adopted by businesses to bring advanced analytics and machine learning capabilities to their IT security arsenal. UEBA solutions recognize patterns in regular user behavior and identify anomalous behaviors that do not match those patterns and may be linked to security events.

Organizations utilize UEBA technologies to increase efficiency and risk management while minimizing financial and reputational loss. They bring value by allowing firms to prevent attacks, particularly those that originate from within the network, detect breaches more quickly to decrease exposure, and mitigate the damage caused by cyber threats. Organizations would be able to detect and respond to threats more quickly and easily if they used such technologies. Customers and business partners will trust organizations that use effective security and risk management strategies and processes. As a result, they can serve as a business enabler, assisting firms in meeting their data privacy and security obligations, as well as compliance goals.

Some of the Essential Features of UEBA that you should know are;

  • Connects security information to identity and entity context.
  • UEBA uses machine learning to provide powerful behavior analytics.
  • Reduces false positives by analyzing the context of user, object activities and security events.
  • Threat chains automate machine learning and analytics processes, reducing the time to detect and respond to threats.
  • UEBA covers a variety of use cases for detecting cyber threats, fraud, non-compliance, and attacks from both inside and outside the company.

Security solutions like UEBA, which were once viewed solely as a means of lowering possible financial losses and increasing productivity, are now seen as a means of enabling a business. Organizations may better prioritize their investments to improve their overall security posture and enable them to satisfy privacy and compliance objectives by understanding what people are doing and how they interact with applications and data. Customers and business partners trust organizations that use effective security and risk management strategies and processes. Thus, they can serve as a business enabler, supporting firms in meeting their data privacy and security obligations, as well as compliance goals.

User & Entity Behaviour Analytics – An Overview

UEBA technologies employ analytics to construct standard profiles and behaviours for users and entities (servers, routers) in an Enterprise firm over a period. This is referred to as “baselining”. Activity that differs from these standard baselines is flagged as suspicious by UEBA technology and analytics applied to these anomalies helps in the discovery of possible risks and security incidents.

The term UEBA was introduced by one of the leading research firm Gartner. UEBA Solutions includes following three factors –
Use Cases – UEBA solutions gives information on how employees, clients and other entities in the organization’s network behave. They conduct activities like anomaly identification, alerting and tracking. And, contrasting to traditional single use-case based specialized tools, UEBA tools are applicable to multiple use cases.
Data – UEBA collects real time event data in structured and unstructured format from user’s and entity’s activities directly or through an existing IT repository. This Enriched data must be machine-readable.
Analytics – UEBA Solutions uses analytics for user focused data exploration and visualization with machine learning (ML) and statistical models by comparing baseline rules with users and entities’ activities with their profiles to detect anomalies.

UEBA Solution Benefits
UEBA Solutions consider both internal and external threats of an organization when creating new policies and rules. When the attack pattern is unknown (zero-day attack), or if the attack enters laterally by changing credentials, IP addresses in an enterprise, traditional security tools struggle to identify a compromised insider. UEBA solutions can detect these attacks because attackers force compromised users or entities to behave differently than defined rules or baseline.

In most cases, UEBA solutions are provided as a cloud-based service or on-premises, sometimes both to an organization. UEBA vendors often require companies to install appliances for network traffic monitoring. The vendor’s approach and design are flexible in terms of the organization’s current and future needs. It’s takes time of 1 month or more to create baselines, profiles and classes of users and entities.

By determining which users reflect anomalous behaviour as compared to known baselines, UEBA solutions prioritize alerts. A security alarm would not be triggered by a single slightly unusual incident. To generate an alarm, the device needs several indicators of suspicious behaviour. This saves investigating team’s time by reducing number of alerts and allows security analysts to find actual security issues more quickly.

UEBA’s Application in IoT – UEBA can play vital role in security risk of Internet of Things (IoT). Huge number of internet-connected devices are deployed by businesses mostly with less security measures in place. Attackers can hack IoT devices and use them to steal information or to launch attack on other companies like DDoS attack. This can cause significant financial losses. UEBA can monitor large number of connected devices for an enterprise firm, create baselines for similar devices and detect when a device deviates from its normal behavior.

Advanced Analytics in UEBA Solutions – Data Integration helps UEBA solutions to compare data from various sources. UEBA solutions apply statistical models on data gathered from various sources with help of machine learning to do deep behavioural profiling in order to identify sensitive changes in user’s activity. The use of unstructured data for unsupervised learning gives big advantage. Data Presentation is used to present findings in a comprehensible way to security analysts.

Use Cases – Uniqueness of use cases separates UEBA solutions from other tools. UEBA solutions build use cases for various domains like malicious insider, incident prioritization, compromised insider, Identity and privileged access management, data exfiltration, etc. These pre-defined uses cases are available at one click on cloud storage which enables quick deployment.