RSS

10 Reasons Cybersecurity Platforms Need Long-Term Hot Data

Learn why cybersecurity platforms need to offer long-term, cost-effective hot data.

Franz Knupfer

Published:

Feb 20, 2024

7 minute read
,

Is your cybersecurity platform too expensive? Even worse, are high costs forcing you to move security data into cold storage where it’s difficult to access and analyze? Data retention can be so expensive that many enterprises can only afford to keep their data “hot” (readily available) for weeks or even days. Short retention windows lead to decreased visibility, and in turn, increased vulnerability and missed opportunities to maximize the value of your data.

To differentiate themselves and provide value to their customers, next-generation cybersecurity platforms must offer long-term hot storage for data in a cost-effective manner.

Here are 10 reasons why long-term hot data is a necessity for cybersecurity.

Breaches can take months or even years to detect.

The average breach took 204 days (more than six months) to detect in 2023. This is well beyond the range of many hot data retention policies. Meanwhile, breaches related to compromised credentials took on average 328 days to identify.

If the hot data retention policy for a security platform spans only a few days to a few months, cybersecurity professionals have a short window of time to find breaches before data is moved to cold storage. Not surprisingly, outside observers detect many breaches—not the organizations where breaches originated.

Transforming the Economics of Log Management with Next-Gen Cloud Data Platforms for Observability Use Cases

Learn about the importance of long-term, cost-effective hot storage, and how building with the right cloud data platform can improve your security posture, eliminate the problem of dark data, support AI use cases, and more.

Align budgetary and data needs to reduce friction.

Cybersecurity teams need access to data. Meanwhile, decision makers and managers often need to reduce costs and work within budget restrictions. As a result, decision makers have to choose between their data and their budget, leading to organizational friction. With long-term affordable hot storage, organizations can avoid the dilemma of choosing between high costs and short retention policies. By doing so, teams can effectively work together to meet organizational goals instead of working at cross purposes.

Sophisticated hackers use a “low and slow” approach.

Advanced persistent threats often use a “low and slow” approach to gain long-term access to a system. This includes sophisticated hacking organizations like Cozy Bear which can remain undetected for years. Cozy Bear’s recent breach of Microsoft used a password spray technique to brute force account passwords. The brute force happened at a slow rate, allowing hackers to avoid detection.

Low and slow intrusions are difficult to detect. While you can refine threat detection tools to alert on lower thresholds, you’ll also benefit from long-term hot storage, which allows you to make historical comparisons and detect patterns and anomalies that occur over a long period of time.

AI models need large datasets for training runs.

The age of AI has arrived for the cybersecurity industry. According to a report, the majority (82%) of IT decision-makers plan to invest in AI-driven cybersecurity in the coming years. To be successful, cybersecurity platforms must offer highly accurate AI tools that effectively detect anomalies, identify malicious attacks, reduce alert fatigue, and more.

However, AI models need training before they go into production. In general, the more data a model can use for training runs, the more accurate and performant it will be. If models don’t have enough data to train on, you risk having overfitted models that aren’t able to accurately generalize about data in real world scenarios.

With long-term hot storage, you’ll have access to much more data for model training. And with Hydrolix, you can also use precision query scaling to separate training workloads. This prevents resource contention and allows teams to find a balance between performance and compute costs.

Bring visibility to your data and solve the dark data problem.

Dark data is a major problem for the cybersecurity industry. It includes all the data that an enterprise stores but cannot readily access. An organization’s security data could contain information about malicious login attempts, breaches, and other valuable business data. Unfortunately, the data instead ends up in cold storage where it goes dark. It will likely only be rehydrated for forensic analysis use cases, after the damage from a breach is already done.

​​According to research, 55% of all enterprise data is dark. Organizations typically keep the data for compliance and regulatory purposes, and it comes with a high price tag. 52% of an organization’s storage costs typically go to dark data.

With long-term hot storage, you can access all of your data, eliminating the dark data problem.

Learn more about the problem of dark data in security and how to solve it.

Reduce the stress and anxiety of the unknown.

Cybersecurity professionals face a difficult, stressful job, and data gaps only compound that stress. As Dmitri Alperovitch, the co-founder of Crowdstrike, once stated: “There are only two types of companies—those that know they’ve been compromised, and those that don’t know.”

When evidence of a breach may be lurking in your data, it’s all the more stressful if you can’t act on that data because it’s unavailable. There is a reason that horror movies usually occur in the dark. When there is a threat, lack of visibility can be terrifying. Having long-term hot access to data is the equivalent of turning on the lights—and you can verify that there are no monsters under the bed.

Avoid data silos and maximize cross-functional use cases.

As Ross Haleliuk writes in Venture In Security, “There is no such thing as ‘security data’, ‘marketing data’, or ‘financial data’ —there is business data that needs to be accessed and analyzed from different angles and by different teams; security is just one of many use cases.”

Use cases ranging from AI training to data science benefit from long-term hot storage, and shouldn’t have the constraints of a cybersecurity platform’s data retention policy. Unfortunately, many traditional SIEM solutions silo data. Because long-term hot storage is prohibitively expensive, data goes dark instead of being available for other use cases.

Investigate breaches faster with forensic analysis.

When a breach is discovered, cybersecurity professionals need to determine the blast radius as quickly as possible. Is the attack still ongoing? Have other systems or customer data been compromised? Forensic analysts need to gather, assess, and document evidence, and stakeholders will want that information as quickly as possible.

With long-term hot storage, cybersecurity professionals can perform forensic analysis without time-consuming data rehydration. And the question of which data should be rehydrated (especially when the blast radius is still unclear) can be avoided altogether.

Threat hunt without limits.

In the case of threat hunting, cybersecurity professionals must be able to sift through huge amounts of historical data in order to detect threats. To threat hunt without limits, they must be able to make ad hoc queries on all of their data, regardless of whether the data is days, months, or even a year old. By having access to historical data, threat hunters can more easily detect long-term patterns that may be suspicious. And Hydrolix offers performant and cost-effective queries even on very large (100+ billion row) datasets.

Discover new business insights in your data.

Some business questions can only be answered with long-term hot access to data. For instance, you might want to compare performance and usage over the last week to the same period a year ago, then drill down to better understand why certain trends are occurring.

Meanwhile, some business questions aren’t evident until you’re able to see your data in a larger context. Monitoring platforms, including platforms for other use cases such as observability, often talk about having a “30,000 foot view.” This cliche means nothing unless you can access the full landscape of your data. In addition to finding answers to your original questions, you might also find new avenues of exploration that could lead to new products and features.

Finally, it’s not always clear how much value you’ll be able to derive from a business question. For example, a data science team might make a hypothesis. However, until it’s proven, it has minimal value to the organization. With long-term hot storage, you can seek to answer these questions. If the data is in cold storage, the answers will likely remain locked away unless you first quantify the value. This leads to a catch-22 where you can’t quantify the value without the data, and you can’t get the data without quantifying the value.

Next Steps

Read the whitepaper Building the Cybersecurity Platforms of the Future to learn how next-generation cloud data platforms are offering long-term, cost-effective hot storage for cybersecurity use cases.

Learn more about Hydrolix and contact us for a POC.

Share this post…

Ready to Start?

Cut data retention costs by 75%

Give Hydrolix a try or get in touch with us to learn more

Is your cybersecurity platform too expensive? Even worse, are high costs forcing you to move security data into cold storage where it’s difficult to access and analyze? Data retention can be so expensive that many enterprises can only afford to keep their data “hot” (readily available) for weeks or even days. Short retention windows lead to decreased visibility, and in turn, increased vulnerability and missed opportunities to maximize the value of your data.

To differentiate themselves and provide value to their customers, next-generation cybersecurity platforms must offer long-term hot storage for data in a cost-effective manner.

Here are 10 reasons why long-term hot data is a necessity for cybersecurity.

Breaches can take months or even years to detect.

The average breach took 204 days (more than six months) to detect in 2023. This is well beyond the range of many hot data retention policies. Meanwhile, breaches related to compromised credentials took on average 328 days to identify.

If the hot data retention policy for a security platform spans only a few days to a few months, cybersecurity professionals have a short window of time to find breaches before data is moved to cold storage. Not surprisingly, outside observers detect many breaches—not the organizations where breaches originated.

Transforming the Economics of Log Management with Next-Gen Cloud Data Platforms for Observability Use Cases

Learn about the importance of long-term, cost-effective hot storage, and how building with the right cloud data platform can improve your security posture, eliminate the problem of dark data, support AI use cases, and more.

Align budgetary and data needs to reduce friction.

Cybersecurity teams need access to data. Meanwhile, decision makers and managers often need to reduce costs and work within budget restrictions. As a result, decision makers have to choose between their data and their budget, leading to organizational friction. With long-term affordable hot storage, organizations can avoid the dilemma of choosing between high costs and short retention policies. By doing so, teams can effectively work together to meet organizational goals instead of working at cross purposes.

Sophisticated hackers use a “low and slow” approach.

Advanced persistent threats often use a “low and slow” approach to gain long-term access to a system. This includes sophisticated hacking organizations like Cozy Bear which can remain undetected for years. Cozy Bear’s recent breach of Microsoft used a password spray technique to brute force account passwords. The brute force happened at a slow rate, allowing hackers to avoid detection.

Low and slow intrusions are difficult to detect. While you can refine threat detection tools to alert on lower thresholds, you’ll also benefit from long-term hot storage, which allows you to make historical comparisons and detect patterns and anomalies that occur over a long period of time.

AI models need large datasets for training runs.

The age of AI has arrived for the cybersecurity industry. According to a report, the majority (82%) of IT decision-makers plan to invest in AI-driven cybersecurity in the coming years. To be successful, cybersecurity platforms must offer highly accurate AI tools that effectively detect anomalies, identify malicious attacks, reduce alert fatigue, and more.

However, AI models need training before they go into production. In general, the more data a model can use for training runs, the more accurate and performant it will be. If models don’t have enough data to train on, you risk having overfitted models that aren’t able to accurately generalize about data in real world scenarios.

With long-term hot storage, you’ll have access to much more data for model training. And with Hydrolix, you can also use precision query scaling to separate training workloads. This prevents resource contention and allows teams to find a balance between performance and compute costs.

Bring visibility to your data and solve the dark data problem.

Dark data is a major problem for the cybersecurity industry. It includes all the data that an enterprise stores but cannot readily access. An organization’s security data could contain information about malicious login attempts, breaches, and other valuable business data. Unfortunately, the data instead ends up in cold storage where it goes dark. It will likely only be rehydrated for forensic analysis use cases, after the damage from a breach is already done.

​​According to research, 55% of all enterprise data is dark. Organizations typically keep the data for compliance and regulatory purposes, and it comes with a high price tag. 52% of an organization’s storage costs typically go to dark data.

With long-term hot storage, you can access all of your data, eliminating the dark data problem.

Learn more about the problem of dark data in security and how to solve it.

Reduce the stress and anxiety of the unknown.

Cybersecurity professionals face a difficult, stressful job, and data gaps only compound that stress. As Dmitri Alperovitch, the co-founder of Crowdstrike, once stated: “There are only two types of companies—those that know they’ve been compromised, and those that don’t know.”

When evidence of a breach may be lurking in your data, it’s all the more stressful if you can’t act on that data because it’s unavailable. There is a reason that horror movies usually occur in the dark. When there is a threat, lack of visibility can be terrifying. Having long-term hot access to data is the equivalent of turning on the lights—and you can verify that there are no monsters under the bed.

Avoid data silos and maximize cross-functional use cases.

As Ross Haleliuk writes in Venture In Security, “There is no such thing as ‘security data’, ‘marketing data’, or ‘financial data’ —there is business data that needs to be accessed and analyzed from different angles and by different teams; security is just one of many use cases.”

Use cases ranging from AI training to data science benefit from long-term hot storage, and shouldn’t have the constraints of a cybersecurity platform’s data retention policy. Unfortunately, many traditional SIEM solutions silo data. Because long-term hot storage is prohibitively expensive, data goes dark instead of being available for other use cases.

Investigate breaches faster with forensic analysis.

When a breach is discovered, cybersecurity professionals need to determine the blast radius as quickly as possible. Is the attack still ongoing? Have other systems or customer data been compromised? Forensic analysts need to gather, assess, and document evidence, and stakeholders will want that information as quickly as possible.

With long-term hot storage, cybersecurity professionals can perform forensic analysis without time-consuming data rehydration. And the question of which data should be rehydrated (especially when the blast radius is still unclear) can be avoided altogether.

Threat hunt without limits.

In the case of threat hunting, cybersecurity professionals must be able to sift through huge amounts of historical data in order to detect threats. To threat hunt without limits, they must be able to make ad hoc queries on all of their data, regardless of whether the data is days, months, or even a year old. By having access to historical data, threat hunters can more easily detect long-term patterns that may be suspicious. And Hydrolix offers performant and cost-effective queries even on very large (100+ billion row) datasets.

Discover new business insights in your data.

Some business questions can only be answered with long-term hot access to data. For instance, you might want to compare performance and usage over the last week to the same period a year ago, then drill down to better understand why certain trends are occurring.

Meanwhile, some business questions aren’t evident until you’re able to see your data in a larger context. Monitoring platforms, including platforms for other use cases such as observability, often talk about having a “30,000 foot view.” This cliche means nothing unless you can access the full landscape of your data. In addition to finding answers to your original questions, you might also find new avenues of exploration that could lead to new products and features.

Finally, it’s not always clear how much value you’ll be able to derive from a business question. For example, a data science team might make a hypothesis. However, until it’s proven, it has minimal value to the organization. With long-term hot storage, you can seek to answer these questions. If the data is in cold storage, the answers will likely remain locked away unless you first quantify the value. This leads to a catch-22 where you can’t quantify the value without the data, and you can’t get the data without quantifying the value.

Next Steps

Read the whitepaper Building the Cybersecurity Platforms of the Future to learn how next-generation cloud data platforms are offering long-term, cost-effective hot storage for cybersecurity use cases.

Learn more about Hydrolix and contact us for a POC.