In the field of computer security, security information and event management (SIEM) software products and services combine security information management (SIM) and security event management (SEM). They provide real-time analysis of security alerts generated by network hardware and applications. Vendors sell SIEM as software, as appliances or as managed services; these products are also used to log security data and generate reports for compliance purposes.
SIEM provides two primary capabilities to an Incident Response team:
- Reporting and forensics about security incidents
- Alerts based on analytics that match a certain rule set, indicating a security issue
At its core, SIEM is a data aggregator, search, and reporting system. SIEM gathers immense amounts of data from your entire networked environment, consolidates and makes that data human accessible. With the data categorized and laid out at your fingertips, you can research data security breaches with as much detail as needed.
Some customers have found that they need to maintain two separate SIEM solutions to get the most value for each purpose since the SIEM can be incredibly noisy and resource intensive: they usually prefer one for data security and one for compliance.
Beyond SIEM’s primary use case of logging and log management, enterprises use their SIEM for other purposes.
SIEM tools also aggregate data you can use for capacity management projects. You can track bandwidth and data growth over time to plan for growth and budgeting purposes. In the capacity-planning world, data is key, and understanding your current usage and trends over time allows you to manage growth and avoid large capital expenditures as a reactionary measure versus prevention.