Top Threat Intelligence Platforms & Tools in 2022
Nowadays, massive amounts of data, a dearth of analysts, and more sophisticated adversarial attacks characterize the cybersecurity environment. Current security infrastructures provide several solutions for managing this information but lack integration. This results in a frustrating amount of technical work required to manage systems and a waste of already limited time and resources.
Leaders in security and risk management need to determine which risks they should be most worried about. They should also:
- Focus on use cases with rapid ROI, such as telemetry enrichment and vulnerability prioritization, particularly for enterprises just beginning a threat intelligence program.
- Justify the budget by describing the importance of threat intelligence to the security operations program's success and the organization's safety.
- Define priority intelligence needs (PIRs) to guide the selection of the proper intelligence products and services for curation into genuine threat intelligence for the enterprise.
- Join and contribute to threat intelligence sharing initiatives to crowdsource efforts against threat actors, while assuaging company worries over privacy or the disclosure of sensitive data.
- If applicable, evaluate suppliers and service providers who may offer capabilities to analyze, monitor, and mitigate risks associated with digital assets outside of conventional IT infrastructures, such as cloud, social media, and third-party technologies.
To counteract these concerns, a growing number of businesses are using threat intelligence platforms. A threat intelligence platform is a sort of software that gathers and organizes threat data from different sources, enabling organizations to gain their most significant security concerns. A threat intelligence platform may manage the collecting and organization of threat data, enabling security experts to concentrate on analysis and planning. Additionally, an organization may use threat intelligence software to increase decision-making and security technology skills to decrease risk and the possibility of compromise.
Threat Intelligence Platforms(TIP) may be installed as a SaaS or on-premise solution to ease the administration of cyber threat intelligence and related entities, including actors, campaigns, incidents, signatures, bulletins, tactics, techniques, and procedures(TTPs).
In this article, we'll first define threat intelligence and explain different types of threat intelligence, then discuss what a threat intelligence platform is, the importance of threat intelligence platforms, the must-have features of threat intelligence tools, and the best threat intelligence platforms available on the market.
What is Threat Intelligence?
Threat intelligence is a sort of data collected by companies that describes the usual motivations, activities, and objectives of an attacker. It informs on known malware signatures, the sorts of data hackers like to target, and potential infection symptoms on a company's device or network.
Using this knowledge, organizations may make smarter security choices and concentrate on the most vulnerable sections of their network. Due to the fact that enterprises may employ threat intelligence to defend themselves from both known and unknown threats, they can adopt a more proactive approach to cybersecurity, avoiding breaches rather than attempting to minimize the damage. The offered information enables businesses to improve their incident response strategies and provide more targeted staff training.
Types of Threat Intelligence
For a successful cybersecurity defense, enterprises require four forms of threat intelligence.
- Operational Threat Intelligence: Operational threat intelligence is information gathering regarding a particular approaching attack, generally via social media and chat rooms. It may give further insight into where and when an attacker will strike, which assets are susceptible, and how a company might prevent a breach before it occurs.
- Strategic Threat Intelligence: It provides high-level knowledge on dangers and is often intended for a non-technical audience, typically executives. It provides the user with an understanding of the potential repercussions of a breach in order to better guide their decision-making.
- Technical Threat Intelligence: It provides technical and non-technical staff with indicators of a particular sort of hazard, such as key terms in email subject lines. This form of intelligence is often updated to accommodate for changing enemy strategies.
- Tactical Threat Intelligence: It gives particular information on an attacker's methods, targets, and tools. This information is often sent to technical users, such as security professionals, and instructs them on what indicators of compromise (IoCs) to look for.
What is a Threat Intelligence Platform?
A threat intelligence platform is a sort of software that gathers and organizes threat data from different sources, enabling businesses to identify their most significant security concerns. A threat intelligence platform may manage the collecting and organization of threat data, enabling security experts to concentrate on analysis and planning. Additionally, the security team may use the threat intelligence software's generated reports to get executive support for additional security measures.
The threat intelligence market is composed of a variety of solutions and services designed to assist organizations in comprehending and preparing for their own unique threat landscape, thereby bolstering their prevention and prediction capabilities and aiding in the improvement of other operations efforts such as incident response (IR), threat hunting, and vulnerability management (VM).
The threat intelligence industry has a vast number of companies, and customers will often face an overwhelming quantity of alternatives.
The information and expertise offered by TI products and services are used in a variety of ways based on the organization's intended results and requirements, such as:
- Detection engineering (SIEM rule creation).
- Threat hunting (creating a Sysmon query for malicious macro execution derived from a technical malware report that endpoint detection tools are not finding).
- Incident enrichment via Security Orchestration, Automation, and Response (SOAR) (associating an IP or binary artifact with a known malware family).
- Disable user accounts in response to a notification from a DRPS provider that a list of compromised accounts is for sale on the dark web.
- Simulating attacks for testing (create attack behavior based on threat actor profile).
Why Do You Need Threat Intelligence Platforms?
In the past, security, and threat intelligence teams made use of a wide variety of tools and processes to manually gather and review threat intelligence data obtained from a wide variety of sources, determine and respond to potential security threats, and share threat intelligence with other stakeholders.
This strategy is becoming less effective for the following reasons:
- The amount and variety of security threats (such as those posed by malicious actors, malware, phishing, botnets, denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks, ransomware, and so on) continue to expand in both breadth and complexity with each passing year.
- Companies nowadays are gathering enormous volumes of data in a broad range of formats, including STIX/TAXII, JSON, XML, PDF, CSV, and email. These formats are used to store the data.
- Every day, millions of possible threat indicators are generated from scratch.
- To avert widespread harm, businesses need to react to possible security risks far more quickly than they did in the past.
All of these elements may put security and threat intelligence teams in a state where they are buried by a sea of noise and false positives, making it impossible for them to identify and distinguish between the following:
- which data is the most relevant and valuable to their organization so that they can analyze it and discover possible security concerns.
- which threats are legitimate and which ones are not so that they may allocate their resources appropriately.
In addition to this, security teams must also maintain oversight of other essential security-related tasks such as planning, monitoring, reaction, feedback, and remediation, and provide consistent communication with other stakeholders and security systems on the most recent threat intelligence data.
When we consider all the things mentioned above, it is not difficult to see why the old method of acquiring and assembling threat information is no longer relevant and why it should be replaced.
In contrast, a threat intelligence tools provide the following benefits to security and threat intelligence teams:
- Continuously feed the most up-to-date threat intelligence data to security systems such as Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) solutions, endpoints, firewalls, Application Programming Interfaces (APIs), and Intrusion Prevention Systems (IPSs), among other types of security systems.
- The whole process of investigating, collecting, aggregating, and organizing threat intelligence data, as well as normalizing, de-duping, and enhancing that data, should be automated, streamlined, and simplified as much as possible.
- Get information that is really important, such as the history of the situation and specifics regarding present and future security concerns, threats, attacks, and vulnerabilities. Additionally, get information about potential threat adversaries and their tactics, techniques, and processes (TTPs).
- Monitor the environment in real-time in order to promptly discover, verify, and react to any possible security concerns.
- Dashboards, alerts, and reports, among other formats, should be used to facilitate data exchange with other stakeholders on threat intelligence.
- Establish protocols for the escalation and response of security incidents.
Must-Have Features of Cyber Threat Intelligence Tools
Every company will have a unique set of requirements for the threat intelligence platform they use, whether it's sandboxing so they can do further research on attacks or behavioral analysis so they can spot threats more rapidly. It is vital to establish if you are simply searching for threat intelligence or whether you would want a platform with additional capabilities, such as antivirus or endpoint security when selecting the appropriate threat intelligence software for your company.
It is recommended that large corporations who have their own security teams look into purchasing best-of-breed software as a separate solution, whereas smaller and medium-sized enterprises may find it more useful to incorporate threat intelligence into an existing security product.
Threat intelligence software should make it simple for security teams to recognize possible cyber attacks and defend networks from them. A threat intelligence platform must have the following capabilities:
- Multiple Data Sources: Data and analysis are the foundation upon which cyber threat intelligence is constructed. Threat intelligence software should be able to extract threat data from many sources to provide a comprehensive picture of a prospective attack. Not every source will supply the information security experts with all they need to safeguard their firm, but one may be able to disclose the attacker's methodology, while others may discuss their desired targets or particular tools. In order to build a trustworthy database of threat-related information, the tool has to gather data from a wide variety of sources, including public, gated, and third-party databases. When a hostile actor launches an attack, it will often leave a fingerprint or other cyber threat indication behind for investigators to find. In order to be able to provide both reactive and preventative security, a cyber threat intelligence platform has to collect information on cyber threat indicators from all over the globe.
- Central Management Console: Threat intelligence software should offer a single management platform for identifying and mitigating risks. With a centralized management interface, security professionals can match anomalies with known risks and expedite the repair.
- Integrations: Threat intelligence software must connect with other security solutions, such as security information and event management (SIEM), firewalls, and endpoint protection. If you want to integrate the cyber threat intelligence tool with the rest of your cybersecurity ecosystem, it has to be easy to extend. Some systems put their emphasis on application programming interface (API) services, which allow you to incorporate a powerful threat intelligence feed into a security software that you've developed yourself. It's possible that others have an integrating marketplace that's all set up and ready to go. In addition to this, it must be able to co-exist with diverse environments, logging and compliance tools, and hardware variations in order to deliver intelligence and protection that is dynamically compatible.
- Flexibility: The instrument that you pick has to be adaptable enough to accommodate a wide variety of applications. To provide you with centralized visibility, for example, it ought to communicate with branch offices and scattered locations. Alternately, you might combine it with the internal security information and event management (SIEM) platform in order to examine IT events for any irregularities. Your cyber threat intelligence product, in an ideal world, would be interoperable with all of the key types of information technology architecture and settings.
- External-focused: One of the most notable distinctions that can be made between cyber threat intelligence products and other forms of vulnerability management software is that the former is mostly concerned with threats that originate from the outside. It may interface with internal systems to help in threat detection and response, but its primary goal is to scan external data streams, repositories, and sources to record new threat types. This integration with inside systems is optional. Your continued safety from unknown threats and zero-day exploits is ensured by this measure.
- Comprehensiveness: Your cyber threat intelligence platform has to provide comprehensive security for all of your network ports, devices, on-premise, and cloud services. In order for it to accomplish this goal, it must do a comprehensive search of a large number of external feeds that include information on threats from all over the globe, including the dark web. In most cases, open-source cyber threat intelligence feeds will make publicly available information accessible, while commercial solutions will assist in the wider identification and deeper study of cyber threats.
Best Cyber Threat Intelligence Tools in 2022
According to Statista, the value of the worldwide cyber threat intelligence market was estimated to be $392.2 million in the year 2020 and is projected to reach $981.8 million by the year 2023. There are a few organizations that stand out as leaders in this industry, and each of them is capable of providing you with effective solutions to combat complex iterations of threats.
The following platforms are recommended for consideration by businesses wishing to add threat intelligence software to their existing cybersecurity solutions. These platforms were selected based on their competence in cybersecurity, user evaluations, and feature choices.
- Recorded Future
- Anomali ThreatStream
- CrowdStrike Falcon X
- AT&T Cybersecurity
- FireEye Helix
- Cisco Umbrella Threat Intelligence
- IBM X-Force Exchange
The cybersecurity business, Recorded Future, is situated in the United States and provides predictive data about online dangers. This also contains details about the brand, as well as information on SecOps, fraud, susceptibility, and geopolitical dangers. The following is a list of the important features included in Recorded Future:
- It is constructed on the Intelligence Graph, which is a reference data collection that has been maintained for more than ten years and is regularly updated.
- It is adaptable in that it evaluates threat indicators for a variety of threats that your company may be exposed to, and it allows you to reduce the scope of your search by using complex filters.
- It takes into account a variety of danger signals coming from the outside world in order to identify any form of risk that you could face in the future.
- It provides a complete and end-to-end picture of the whole threat lifecycle, beginning with the attacker and moving through the midway to the target.
- It interacts with your security information and event management (SIEM) system as well as security orchestration, automation, and response (SOAR), and it has a developing marketplace for integration.
Recorded Future's unique selling proposition is that it tailors the insights to individual job functions and risk areas, whether it be for the evaluation of third-party vendors or for the maintenance of brand integrity. This results in a large reduction of noise while providing the appropriate stakeholders with the most relevant threat intelligence information. Prices start at $10,000 for Amazon Web Services (AWS) but may vary greatly depending on the deployment environment.
GreyNoise is a startup company located in the United States that specializes in cybersecurity and helps decrease the number of false positives that occur during the analysis of threat intelligence material. It accumulates information that would be considered noise and may potentially be overlooked by a security analyst. The following is a list of the important characteristics that are included in this cyber threat intelligence tool:
- It gathers information on IP labels in order to identify situations in which security tools are overwhelmed by noise.
- GreyNoise insights are supplied using APIs and visualizers that may be customized for use in a variety of different contexts. This makes GreyNoise insights flexible.
- The program exclusively examines data that is based on the internet and servers that are accessible to the public in order to locate any instances of business security being compromised.
- GreyNoise can identify new dangers, give contextualized information, and locate actionable warnings by monitoring hundreds of thousands of IPs.
- It is possible to connect it with almost any other information technology system by using APIs and integrations.
GreyNoise's unique RIOT or Rule It Out function, which adds context to warnings by correlating user behavior, business applications, and server data is the company's most distinguishing feature. Pricing begins at $25,000 a year, and there is also a free version available called the Community edition. Independent users may find that this database, which is freely available, is beneficial.
Anomali ThreatStream is capable of aggregating millions of threat indicators, which enables it to detect new attacks, find current breaches, and provide security teams with the ability to swiftly comprehend and eliminate threats. Through the Anomali App store, in addition to the 140 open-source feeds that are packaged with the product, Anomali makes it simple to broaden the scope of the information that is gathered by the TIP. Users may conduct reviews and make purchases of new intelligence feeds in this section. The contextualization of threats provided by this extra information helps to significantly cut down on the number of false positives.
The extremely accurate machine-learning technique that Anomali uses to give ratings to indicators of compromise (IoCs) in order to help security teams prioritize mitigation efforts is one of the company's primary points of differentiation. In order to improve threat detection and response processes, ThreatStream enables integration with a large number of widely used security information and event management (SIEM) systems and orchestration platforms.
The primary features of Anomali ThreatStream are listed below:
- Integration with intelligence tools provided by other parties
- Extraction of information from emails that are suspected of being phishing
- De-duplication of data
- Elimination of false-positive results
- Providing various free tools for threat intelligence collection and analysis.
CrowdStrike Falcon X: Threat Intelligence
The Falcon X, the Falcon X Premium, and the Falcon X Elite are the three different levels that are available for purchase with this threat intelligence platform. All of them come with automatic malware investigation tools, which cut down on the amount of time needed to establish the severity of a threat and detect potential dangers. People who are currently using the Falcon products offered by the firm will not be required to install or deploy any additional software since the platform offers an easy-to-use endpoint integration that does not require any new hardware.
People might also profit from intelligence reports, which provide daily updates and strategic insights into current events. Customized breakdowns make it possible to monitor a company for threats based not just on social media but also on distributed denial of service(DDOS) attacks. In the highest grade of this service, a cybersecurity specialist conducts research on particular dangers and then delivers a bespoke report detailing what they discover.
The main features of CrowdStrike Falcon X are as follows:
- IOC feed, which displays real-time signs of compromise
- APIs and integrations that are available are compatible with the many security technologies.
- Over a hundred different profiles of recognized dangerous actors
AT&T Cybersecurity's Unified Security Management (USM), which was previously known as AlienVault's, obtains threat information from AlienVault Labs and its enormous Open Threat Exchange (OTX), which is the world's biggest crowd-sourced collaborative threat exchange. It offers centralized threat detection, incident response, and compliance management for environments hosted in the cloud as well as those located on-premises. USM has automatically updated once every half an hour thanks to the threat information that is supplied by AT&T Alien Labs. This allows the USM to stay one step ahead of ever-evolving and newly discovered threats. This enables security teams to focus their attention on reacting to alarms rather than investigating the source of the alerts themselves.
The main features of Unified Security Management (USM) are as follows:
- Compliance management
- Incident response
- Asset discovery
- Threat detection
- Access to OTX
FireEye Helix is a security platform that is hosted in the cloud and provides you with the ability to address problems and get notifications of any danger. The solution makes use of SIEM analytics and is powered by the human analysts and specialists employed by FireEye.
FireEye Helix is able to defend you from the most recent attacks by integrating a number of different technologies and capabilities related to threat intelligence. A threat intelligence feed provided by Mandiant may be integrated with the FireEye security system. The two businesses recently severed their ties, and the feed was a service provided by FireEye at the time that the Helix system was being developed. In addition, you may benefit from this information by combining the data pertaining to alerts and events.
The program employs ML and AI to do behavior analysis and generates warnings if there are deviations from the norm. FireEye Helix has the ability to identify a broad variety of multi-vector attacks thanks to its threat intelligence and sophisticated analytics capabilities.
FireEye Helix can identify potential security incidents by comparing and standardizing data from many different integrated technologies, including the following:
- Security Orchestration and Automation (SOAR)
- User and Entity Behavior Analytics (UEBA)
- Next-gen SIEM
- Compliance Reporting
- Security Analytics
- Threat Intelligence
ThreatConnect is a platform that integrates threat information, security orchestration and response, and the quantification of cyber risk all into a single solution. Instead of adopting a one-size-fits-all approach to security, the system customizes its procedures to the specific needs of the company. To improve cybersecurity, it simplifies workflows and eliminates barriers between different teams, all while measuring the effectiveness of the security team based on the amount of risk reduced. The system gives a comprehensive perspective of the risks, allowing for faster assessments and more efficient procedures. Additionally, it integrates strategic and operational objectives, which assists security teams in prioritizing the most critical vulnerabilities.
The Key Features of ThreatConnect are as follows:
- Dynamic, intelligence-driven playbooks
- Threat scoring
- Native and API integrations
- Actionable threat insights
- Shareable threat intelligence reports
- Automated playbook adjustments
Cisco Umbrella Threat Intelligence
Cisco Systems, Inc. is one of the major producers of networking and security solutions in the world. Cisco Umbrella is a system that is hosted in the cloud and utilizes threat intelligence to defend your endpoints, office locations, and remote users from potential danger.
The following is a list of the important features included in this cyber threat intelligence tool:
- It gathers cross-product security data from Cisco's infrastructure as well as from sources provided by third parties.
- It provides visibility and protection against phishing, malware, and ransomware threats all the way from beginning to conclusion.
- It is adaptable since it can be purchased in a number of different plans and packages that concentrate on cloud access, online security, and the avoidance of data loss.
- You may benefit from a variety of application programming interfaces (APIs) and native connectors.
- It relies not only on internal monitoring but also on external data to identify and eliminate any dangers.
The unique selling proposition of Cisco Umbrella is that it is based on the SecureX product offering of the corporation. SecureX is a centralized platform for threat information, detection, analysis, and response. This allows for higher scalability to be achieved via the use of a uniform cloud-native console. Cisco Umbrella is particularly intended for use by big, decentralized enterprises that may have security vulnerabilities in certain areas of their posture.
IBM X-Force Exchange
IBM X-Force Exchange is a cloud-based solution that offers security research assets to assist IT teams in understanding new threats and security risks, analyzing threats, and making choices in near real-time. Not only does IBM X-Force Exchange deliver threat intelligence from industry professionals, but it also enables users to engage with peers to get the finest information from a range of sources. By combining human and machine-generated information, cybersecurity teams get the most effective intelligence to thwart attacks. Multiple packages are available, allowing organizations to get the amount of protection they need.
Key features of IBM X-Force Exchange are listed below:
- ISO Compliance
- Early warning feeds
- Indicators of compromise
- Native and API integrations
- Unlimited number of records
- Robust search function
Pros of IBM X-Force Exchange are listed below:
- Easy to navigate user interface
- Free plan for the most basic uses
- Access to a significant volume of data on threats to the organization
However, intelligence might be quite generic and lack the specificity necessary to be actionable. Also, some clients have expressed dissatisfaction that the available AI capabilities are not robust.
Maltego is a graphical link analysis and open-source intelligence (OSINT) application for acquiring and linking information for investigative activities. With Maltego, you can effortlessly mine data from disparate sources, automatically combine relevant information into a single graph, and graphically map it to explore your data environment. Users of Maltego include security specialists, forensic detectives, investigative journalists, and researchers, among others.
Maltego's data integrations with The Wayback Machine, VirusTotal, Shodan, WHOIS, TinEye, ATT&CK, MISP, Orbis, Pipl, and others allow users to query many forms of data.