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Overcoming Barriers to Effective OT Alert Management

The Claroty Team
/ September 14th, 2020

Effective and efficient alert management capabilities are crucial to reducing harm and ensuring process safety and continuity in the event of a security incident affecting an operational technology (OT) environment. The longer it takes to identify, evaluate, and respond to an alert indicating such an incident, the greater its potential impact on OT availability, reliability, and safety is likely to be.

However, much like its information technology (IT) counterpart, effective OT alert management requires overcoming various challenges. The most troublesome of these include:

Alert Fatigue

Enterprises are increasingly integrating OT security with their IT security operations centers (SOCs), which if executed properly, can deliver numerous performance and efficiency advantages. However, many organizations' existing IT SOCs are already overwhelmed with an abundance of alerts—many of which may be false positives. Without the proper policies and procedures in place, adding OT alerts to the mix can easily exacerbate this issue.

Expertise Limitations

It is rare for IT SOC personnel to be thoroughly trained in matters related to OT security. As a result, it can be difficult for SOC teams to understand and interpret OT alerts or their risk implications.
Incomplete Context

Effectively managing an OT alert requires insight into the context in which it was triggered, how it relates to other conditions in the environment, and the level of risk it poses to that environment. Gaining these insights can be resource-intensive and challenging due to OT visibility, expertise, and bandwidth constraints.

The Claroty Platform leverages purpose-built automation to deliver contextual insight into OT environments that streamlines and accelerates alert policies, assessments, triage, and other components of the alert management lifecycle. These features are complemented by Claroty's extensive ecosystem of integrations, enabling OT and IT security teams to leverage their existing technologies to optimize how they manage alerts affecting OT environments.

Highlights of The Claroty Platform's support for alert management include:

Industry-Leading OT Visibility

Alert management efforts cannot be effective without granular visibility into your OT environment. However, achieving this visibility is uniquely challenging in OT environments due to non-standardized technology, proprietary protocols, and a lack of granular data, among other factors. The Claroty Platform helps teams overcome these challenges by delivering an industry-leading caliber of insight into OT assets, network activity, and processes.

SOAR Integrations

Effortless access to standard operating procedures (SOPs)—otherwise known as response playbooks—can go a long way to ensure rapid and consistent execution of a mitigation action that is appropriate for a given alert. For this reason, Claroty has invested considerable effort into developing seamless integrations with SOAR (security orchestration, automation and response) platforms such as Palo Alto Networks' Cortex XSOAR, arming joint users with automated playbooks that facilitate response to OT alerts. The efficiency and data-rich alerting and response capabilities enabled by Claroty's SOAR integrations are further enhanced when implemented alongside Claroty's integrations with CMDB and ticketing platforms such as ServiceNow.

Contextual Alert Risk Scoring

Claroty leverages an algorithm based on the unique context and specific circumstances in which each alert is triggered to provide a single, tailor-made metric for assessing risks present in your OT environment. In addition to easily weeding out distracting false positives, this feature enables rapid and effective prioritization when responding to a time-sensitive incident.
Root-Cause Analysis

Without the right technical capabilities in place, real-time data gleaned from OT environments can present a chaotic, noisy picture that is difficult to quickly interpret in order to formulate a response. Claroty's Root Cause Analysis feature addresses this challenge by grouping all interrelated events into a single alert. The result is a consolidated, contextualized view of the full chain of events across the cyber kill chain, thereby making it significantly easier to determine what has transpired.

To learn more about how Claroty can help your team lay the groundwork for effective alert management, request a demo.


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