The Simplicity of One Pane of Glass: Introducing QRadar Vulnerability Manager

July 30, 2013
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3 min read

Keep it Simple

We’ve probably all heard the acronym “KISS,” but I’ll bet you don’t know where it came from.  It was actually a design principle that started with the US Navy in the early 1960’s.  The KISS principle states that most systems work best if they are kept simple rather than if they are made complex.

Originally the acronym stood for “Keep It Simple Stupid”.  Over time it came to also stand for “keep it short and simple”, “keep it simple sir”, “keep it super simple”, “keep it simple and straightforward”, “keep it simple and safe”, “keep it simple student”, “keep it simple, silly”, “keep it simple and sincere” “keep it simple and secular”, etc.  Yikes!  Even an acronym dedicated to simplicity can become complicated.  That’s our history lesson for today.

And complexity has also worked it’s way into our data centers.  Some complexities can’t be avoided, it’s the nature of the beast.  However, some come from the deployment of multiple, silo’d, specialized point products.

The Simplicity of One Pane of Glass

When it comes to Security Intelligence, IBM has taken a page out of the Navy’s “simplicity” book.

For many of the customers that I have worked with, the IBM QRadar Security Intelligence Platform is the foundation of their integrated security intelligence strategy.  At its heart lies IBM Security QRadar SIEM (Security Information and Event Management).

QRadar SIEM collects, normalizes, and correlates network data, and then adds context for real security intelligence. IBM puts automation on top of all of this, enabling billions of logs, events and network flows to be simplified and reduced to a small number of prioritized, actionable events for follow up by security teams, saving labor time and lowering costs.  These could be reasons why, for the fifth consecutive year, it was recognized as a leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for SIEM.

But the IBM QRadar Security Intelligence Platform does even more.  It integrates IBM Security QRadar SIEM with other QRadar products for Log Management, Risk Management, Configuration Management, and Anomaly Detection.  Together, these form a unified solution that uses a single user interface (“one pane of glass“), architecture and database.  Today there are over 3,000 customers world-wide benefiting from QRadar, with deployments ranging in size from small to very large, where millions of security events per second are being analyzed.

Introducing IBM QRadar Vulnerability Manager

And the best just keeps getting better.  On July 23, IBM announced a new addition to the family:  IBM Security QRadar Vulnerability Manager.  This new product helps organizations proactively defend against threats by discovering their network, device and application software vulnerabilities.

It contains a powerful scanner and is fully integrated with the IBM QRadar Security Intelligence Platform.  It can conduct dynamic, event-driven asset searches along with regularly scheduled scans to obtain vulnerability data. It then combines this data with asset information from QRadar’s common database, enabling a real-time view of an organization’s security posture. By leveraging security context derived from logs, network flow data and asset configurations, and threat intelligence sources such as IBM X-Force, it can help take the large “sea” of vulnerabilities detected and reduce them down to a small list that requires attention.

IBM Security QRadar Vulnerability manager also uses existing QRadar appliances (installation is done via turnkey), the QRadar common database, and the common single pane of glass interface, saving you money by eliminating the need for another point product.  Be sure to check out the document links below and learn more.

Now to wrap up, I’d like to insert one more piece of history that I thought you might enjoy, this time a quote from Mark Twain about keeping things short and simple…

“I didn’t have time to write a short letter, so I wrote a long one instead.” – Mark Twain

Roger Hellman
Market Segment Manager, IBM Security

Roger Hellman is an IBM security systems professional with twenty-nine years of global experience in the IT industry. During his career, Roger worked in sof...
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