John Maddison, EVP of Products and CMO at Fortinet
“Fortinet builds ML-driven automation into all of its SOC offerings to support short-staffed teams affected by the cybersecurity skills shortage. But technology alone won’t solve this issue, which is why we are dedicated to also delivering human-based SOC augmentation services to provide immediate support, while investing in an industry-leading training institute to close the cybersecurity skills gap. This combination of technology, services, and training enables SOC professionals to better protect their organizations from detection to incident recovery.”
Fortinet® (NASDAQ: FTNT), a global leader in broad, integrated, and automated cybersecurity solutions, today announced new security operations center (SOC) augmentation services designed to help strengthen an organization’s cyber resiliency and support short-staffed teams strained by the talent shortage. In addition, as part of Fortinet’s leadership efforts to help close the cyber skills gap, the Fortinet Training Institute has added initiatives across its programs to further increase access to its industry-recognized training and certifications.
Cybersecurity Skills Shortage Prompts a New Approach
The prevailing talent shortage remains one of the top challenges facing SOC teams globally. Fortinet’s 2022 Cybersecurity Skills Gap report found that 50% of global leaders cite security operations as one of the most challenging roles to fill, and 42% are still in need of security operations analysts. Additionally, the same Fortinet survey found that worldwide, 80% of organizations suffered one or more breaches due to a lack of cybersecurity skills and awareness.
A lack of resources and personnel, combined with the sheer volume of security alerts SOC teams receive per day, often results in missed detections and slower responses that increase exposure to cyber risk. SOC teams require an immediate solution to mitigate these challenges through investment in automated and integrated SOC and cybersecurity technologies and experienced professionals to better protect against threats.
New and Enhanced SOC Augmentation Services Provide Immediate Support for Short-Staffed Security Operations Teams
Committed to helping organizations overcome these obstacles, Fortinet’s new and enhanced services help SOC teams reduce their organizations’ cyber risk while freeing up their time to focus on higher-priority projects. These updates include:
SOC-as-a-Service (SOCaaS): Fortinet has expanded its SOCaaS offering, which blends FortiGuard cybersecurity experts with Fortinet advanced SOC technology by adding more artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) capabilities to additional use cases. These updates enhance the offering’s ability to aggregate security alerts in one single cloud-based dashboard for customers to view actionable intelligence and accelerate resolution, and further enables security operations teams to offload monitoring and detection to Fortinet security experts. With this approach, Fortinet speeds up alert triage, rapidly escalates security incidents, and reduces false-positive alerts for customers.
Outbreak Detection Service: A new outbreak detection service is available to customers that alerts subscribers through email as well as automatically within key product user interfaces to major breaking cybersecurity events that have the potential for widespread ramifications. These alerts include critical information about security incidents, such as an attack’s timeline of events and what specific technology has been affected. In addition, the alerts also provide organizations with custom threat hunting to run against logs and identify the potential impact of an attack, as well as recommendations to improve their security posture for better protection in the future.
Incident Response and Readiness (IR&R) Services: Fortinet recently added cybersecurity readiness services as part of its Incident Response offering and shifted the purchasing model to prioritize prevention. By providing a suite of proactive prevention-oriented services, such as risk assessments, playbook development, and tabletop exercises as part of the Incident Response and Readiness Services retainer, organizations can strengthen their cyber preparedness, SOC effectiveness, and reduce cyber risk, while still having access to a team of FortiGuard experts to help with rapid containment and remediation in the event of a cyberattack. In response to an accelerated demand for these services around the globe, Fortinet is also expanding its headcount dedicated to IR&R and SOC automation capabilities to allow more enterprises to have access to the offering.
Expanding Cyber Skills Through the Fortinet Training Institute
While the new and enhanced SOC augmentation services provide immediate relief to strained teams, a long-term investment in continued learning and advancing cyber skills is just as critical to keep up with the ever-changing threat landscape. As part of Fortinet’s longstanding commitment to eliminate the skills gap, the Fortinet Training Institute offers award-winning, multi-level training and certifications to security professionals seeking to advance and upskill their knowledge in key cybersecurity areas. These programs also help untap new talent pools to help build the cyber workforce of the future, with a focus on providing training opportunities for women, veterans, students, and underserved populations. Some recent updates across programs include:
Increasing Access to Advanced Technical Training: Fortinet has made the practical exam for NSE level 8 more accessible for IT and security professionals everywhere. Both the written and practical portions of the exam are now available in an online, proctored format, making the highest and most elite level of the Network Security Expert (NSE) Certification program more accessible to security professionals around the world.
Supporting the Advancement of Women Professionals in Cybersecurity: The first women cohort of the Fortinet and Women in Cybersecurity (WiCyS) bootcamp completed the program, which offered 100 WiCyS members access to Fortinet’s NSE level 4 training and labs for free, technical mentors, exam vouchers, and more. Fortinet has also awarded five of the program participants with scholarships to attend the annual WiCyS Conference March 16–18, where they will have access to cyber leaders and employers.
Developing Cybersecurity Skills in Youth: To further develop the cyber workforce of the future, Fortinet is sponsoring various cybersecurity-based competitions for students in varying academic levels, ranging from middle school to college. This includes being a platinum sponsor of MITRE Engenuity’s Embedded Capture the Flag (eCTF) 12-week competition and a category sponsor for the Carnegie Mellon Capture the Flag competition.
Through these initiatives, Fortinet is progressing toward the company’s pledge to train 1 million people in cybersecurity by 2026. Additionally, Fortinet’s new and enhanced SOC augmentation services build on its expansive services portfolio backed by FortiGuard Labs. With today’s announcement, Fortinet remains committed to alleviating the challenges associated with the cybersecurity talent shortage by helping organizations better manage cyber risks with ML-driven automation, services, and increased access to training.