The New Norm

by Al Wissinger

July 1, 2020

The New Norm

The COVID-19 pandemic continues to challenge our previous ways of life. Companies of all sizes have had no choice but to adapt in ways they did not anticipate or prefer. Government mandated lockdowns created hardships that had to be overcome with creative solutions, especially regarding employees working from home. That said, businesses are learning these new creative working adjustments bring with them numerous benefits – increasing the likelihood it could become the new work norm.

Up until recently, IT infrastructures were on a controlled evolutionary path, especially when it came to controlling the network perimeter. It is easy enough to keep employees behind firewalls and switches when they are working from designated office spaces. The advent of newer technologies such as laptops, tablets, smartphones, high speed networks, and 4G cellular services all allowed sales personnel to move from a central workspace to highly distributed mobile environments. These road warriors soon would run into issues with hotel and coffee shop Wi-Fi being hijacked and ultimately compromising and exposing valuable corporate data.

Organizations began experimenting with remote working, but still turned to VPNs and dedicated network connections they controlled. The pandemic of 2020 has moved the controlled path to a revolutionary uncontrolled path, in mass, with government lock down enforcements.

We look to the future with some believing that a vaccine will enable life to go back to what was normal – people would simply get their annual inoculations along with the flu vaccines. The reality is much different. Companies have realized they can move forward without the previously needed amount of expensive office space. They are realizing the high cost of real estate, rent, utilities and countless supplies are no longer needed and that their employees are indeed capable of effectively working from home.

Take these latest headlines indicating there is a new norm coming:

These are just a couple of the unending number of articles illustrating this shift. It is a revolutionary change in how organization maintain control of content and intellectual property. for Switches and routers are not being put in workers’ homes. No data is being sent back to manage the security of the network. This can easily become a nightmare, but forward-thinking administrators and CISOs are turning to new technology to easily solve this hurdle, one that is easily solvable.

When you blend the latest EDR tools such as SentinelOne Complete with its Hermes raw data feed and Fluency’s next generation SIEM tool, security teams gain robust and deep visibility of what is going on with their work-from-home employees. They will be able to get strong network-related insights and specific end-user behavioral analytics via powerful reconstruction techniques.

This unique and deeply integrated solution is a new market category that Gartner is calling XDR SIEM. On June 22, 2020 they released their Top 9 Security and Risk Trends for 2020. They emphasize that COVID-19 has “refocused security teams on the value of cloud delivered security and operational tools that don’t require a LAN connection to function…” This is where the new norm is going.

Here are some of the most notable insights from Gartner’s nine trends:

  • Trend #1 is critical to this XDR model. It states: “Extended detection and response (XDR) solutions are emerging that automatically collect and correlate data from multiple security products to improve threat detection and provide an incident response capability. For example, an attack that caused alerts on email, endpoint and network can be combined into a single incident. The primary goals of an XDR solution are to increase detection accuracy and improve security operations efficiency and productivity.”
  • Trend #2 states: “Security process automation emerges to eliminate repetitive tasks” by addressing the gap of skilled resources with automated case management workflows.
  • Trend #7’s focus relates to dealing with secure access service edge (SASE) technologies that better allow companies to protect their remote and mobile employees when they realize they no longer can backhaul the network traffic so it flows through a physical security system in a data center.

What Gartner is describing is exactly how Fluency Security competes in this space. Leading innovators at Fluency have tightly integrated feeds from SentinelOne Complete and Hermes into the Fluency X-SIEM solution – delivering enhanced insight and value to both existing and prospective customers. Fluency is continuing to build on strategic relationships to ensure clients have the most capable SIEM tool on the market.

In the end, the new norm is still developing. But early signs indicate that major corporations are already moving to save substantial costs by allowing their employees the freedom to work from home on a permanent basis. Protecting the business and the employees outside of the traditional data center network can be tedious. However, with Fluency’s X-SIEM tool and SentinelOne’s XDR protection, organizations can quickly, easily, and affordably gain the needed security and efficiency that laggards will soon envy.

Learn more about the Fluency X-SIEM tool here.