Integrated DFIR Tool Can Simplify and Accelerate Cyber Forensics
Explore real use cases demonstrating the transformative impact of Trend Vision One™ – Forensics, an integrated Digital Forensics and Incident Response (DFIR) tool
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Security teams are increasingly confronted with sophisticated threats, emphasizing the criticality of the Digital Forensics and Incident Response (DFIR) task in countering cybercriminal activities. Regrettably, many organizations either lack a robust DFIR tool for evidence collection and incident response or rely on out-of-the-box solutions that come with their own set of issues. Compounded by the industry-wide scarcity of security and incident response talents, fulfilling urgent incident investigations within organizations has become more arduous.
This blog explores the challenges faced by Trend Micro’s incident response team and customers before implementing Trend Vision One™ – Forensics, and the transformative impact it had on their operations.
Challenges before using Forensics
City of Columbia
Columbia, situated in the heart of Missouri, stands as the state's fourth-largest city. Renowned for its vibrant blend of academic pursuits, cultural vibrancy, and ample opportunities for outdoor recreation, Columbia attracts students, professionals, and enthusiasts seeking a lively, university-centric environment.
Despite its dynamism, the city government's cybersecurity team operates on a modest scale, comprising a few dedicated engineers tasked with overseeing a substantial user base of thousands of individuals and endpoints.
Prior to the introduction of Forensics, the City of Columbia heavily relied on PowerShell scripts and labor-intensive manual processes for incident evidence collection. This approach placed an excessive burden on the small team. Consequently, they often resorted to wiping out or reimaging the endpoints involved.
Trend Micro Incident Response Service Team
Effectively mitigating the repercussions of an incident demands a swift and strategic response from Trend’s globally adept team. From pinpointing the breach's origin to offering guidance on restoring operations and minimizing impact, Trend’s Incident Response Service operates around the clock to safeguard our customers' security and resilience.
Before the launch of Forensics, Trend’s IR team utilized an evidence collection tool that primarily amassed copious amounts of logs but lacked the crucial elements of threat intelligence and malware scanning for identifying both known and unknown malware and attacks. Consequently, IR analysts were compelled to sift through substantial volumes of data, akin to searching for a needle in a haystack.
Moreover, as a worldwide organization, each regional IR team encountered challenges in collaborating across different parts of the globe during incident response. Regional teams were also often required to travel to their local customers' locations for evidence collection, contributing to prolonged response times in the face of incidents.
How Forensics helps
City of Columbia
In September 2023, the City of Columbia encountered a suspicious anomaly, prompting the need for a comprehensive investigation. Although Forensics was still in the preview phase, the team swiftly activated it via the Trend Vision One™ platform console. With a few simple clicks, such as endpoint and evidence type selection, an Evidence Report materialized within minutes, furnishing crucial details including file timelines, network data, user activities, and event logs. As a result, the team effectively eliminated the need of physically accessing users' computers for the required incident data, streamlining the investigative process significantly.
Forensics has markedly enhanced the team's incident response efficiency and capabilities. The laborious process of drafting and waiting for PowerShell scripts is now a thing of the past. Consequently, the team can engage in faster and more comprehensive incident investigations, notably improving operational agility. This allows the City of Columbia to allocate precious time to strategic initiatives, such as fortifying the city's risk compliance protocols, ensuring a more robust and resilient security framework for the city.
Trend Micro IR team
In Q4 2022, Trend's Incident Response (IR) team leadership proposed the integration of a forensics product into the platform. Over the following quarters, the IR team provided pivotal input on the product specifications and served as the initial testers of Forensics. Since its implementation within the team, they experienced immediate benefits such as:
- No delay in initiating IR tasks: With the adoption of Forensics, the IR team can now kickstart tasks without any lag time. By leveraging the capabilities of the Trend Vision One platform, physical travel to the customer's office for deploying an IR tool is no longer necessary. Countless hours have been saved prior to the commencement of each incident response task. Trend’s IR team can seamlessly utilize Forensics remotely for evidence collection, investigations, and responsive actions. Moreover, for long-standing Trend customers yet to migrate to the latest Trend Vision One platform, the IR team can swiftly aid in the deployment of endpoint sensors and evidence collection, enabling triage within just 15 minutes.
- Automated evidence collection: Due to the seamless integration of Forensics with the Trend Vision One platform, the IR team can establish rules within the Security Playbook to automatically gather evidence upon meeting specific criteria. This automation significantly reduces the time required for evidence collection, while retaining the option for manual evidence retrieval.
- Unified platform for global collaboration: Given the cloud-native architecture of the Trend Vision One platform, diverse global IR teams can seamlessly collaborate within the same Workspace or War Room through the Forensics application, effectively addressing incidents collectively across the globe. The tool's enhanced visibility and user-friendly interface substantially amplify the efficiency of the global team.
Forensics is an app natively built within the platform, designed to deliver a frictionless experience for SOC analysts or DFIR specialists to conduct security investigations. From the Trend Vision One console, you can gather digital evidence from endpoints, organize collected data within workspaces, and quickly triage endpoints using integrated query/scan such as YARA and osquery.
Forensics requires zero deployments and seamlessly works with native sensors, streamlining operational complexities and ensuring faster and more effective forensics and incident response. To learn more, click here for the Forensics datasheet.