The cybersecurity industry is growing rapidly, and it’s expected to continue to grow in the coming years. By 2027, the cybersecurity market is anticipated to expand at a CAGR of 13.37%.
Security Operations Centre (SOC) and Network Operations Centre (NOC) are key positions in any cyber security team. SOC is the point of contact for everything that has to do with defending a network, and NOC is the point of contact for anything that has to do with running it. But what exactly do NOC and SOC teams do? Let’s find out.
NOC, or network operations center, is a centralized place for handling network-related issues. NOCs are usually staffed 24/7 and have teams of engineers responsible for monitoring and managing network infrastructure and services.
NOCs play a critical role in ensuring the availability and performance of networked systems and can be found in organizations of all sizes, from small businesses to large enterprises. In the world of cyber security, NOCs play an important role in detecting and responding to security operations and incidents. When a security breach occurs, the NOC team is typically responsible for identifying and containing the incident.
The SOC, or security operation center, also a centralized location, is vital to an organization’s cyber security infrastructure. SOCs are responsible for monitoring and responding to security incidents and conducting ongoing analysis of security data to identify trends and potential threats.
SOCs security is typically staffed by a team of skilled security analysts who use various tools and techniques to detect and respond to incidents. In many organizations, the SOC cyber security team works closely with the network operations center (NOC) to ensure that any identified security issues are promptly addressed.
There are some significant differences between the NOC and SOC operations, even though both teams play very similar roles within the organization.
SOCs and NOCs share the same primary goal: to ensure that the corporate network meets the business requirements. There are, however, differences between the two in terms of the details of these objectives.
During normal operations, a NOC’s focus is to ensure that the network can meet service level agreements (SLAs) as well as address natural disruptions, such as service outages or natural disasters. Meanwhile, the SOC safeguards businesses against cyber threats that interfere with their operations.
Protecting the corporate network against disruption is the NOC and SOC’s responsibility. It is, however, different adversaries that they face.
In the NOC, natural events and not human-driven events are primarily prevented from interfering with network performance. Natural disasters, power outages, and Internet outages are examples of this. Human-driven disruptions, however, are protected by managed SOC analysts. As a team, they are responsible for identifying, triaging, and responding to cyberattacks that threaten operations.
Many skills are required by both NOC and SOC analysts. Monitoring the network’s operation and identifying and addressing issues that have negatively affected network performance are necessary in both cases. It is important to note that NOC analysts and SOC analysts apply their skills differently and focus on different areas of interest.
NOC analysts primarily use network monitoring skills to diagnose and repair “natural” problems within their infrastructure. As well as optimizing network infrastructure and endpoints, NOC analysts’ skill sets will also differ from those of security operations centers.
Alternatively, security SOC analysts are responsible for identifying, analyzing, and preventing threats caused by humans. This requires a deep understanding of how the cyber-attack chain functions and the ability to remediate infections deliberately created by humans as malicious and evasive. Analysts’ skill sets will be geared toward hardening and securing corporate IT assets instead of optimizing network and endpoint security.
There is no “either-or” choice between a NOC and a SOC. A business needs both to maintain normal operations, and neither is better or worse.
Managing the organization’s infrastructure is the responsibility of the NOC while protecting it from cyber threats that threaten business operations is the responsibility of the SOC. In terms of protecting network performance and corporate productivity, the roles of the NOC and SOC are complementary.
Both natural and human-driven events can cause network and business disruptions. If an organization chooses between a NOC and a SOC, it leaves itself vulnerable. For professional-grade info about cybersecurity do check out our UNext website.