When there is a security breach or a computer incident, a good way to address and manage this is through an organized method referred to as incident response. The objective of applying an incident response is to manage the situation that would limit the incurred damage, as well as reducing costs and recovery time. In this approach, it also requires a policy that defines, in specific terms, the composition of an incident and provides a step process that will be applied to resolve the problem.
The composition of an organization’s incident response is the computer incident team, security, IT staff, representatives from the legal, human resources and public relations departments.
SANS (SysAdmin, Audit, Network and Security) Institute, a world-class security operations center, in their experiences in handling computer incidents, they have offered these steps to address an incident effectively.
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It is the main duty of an organization to prepare and educate users and the IT staff of the importance of updated security measures and train them how to respond to computer and network security incidents properly and quickly.
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It is an important need to create an incident response team, due to the fact that there is the threat of a computer incident, so that this group can function according to their task and act on resolving it. As soon as the team confirms that it is a security incident, they can contact CERT (Computer Emergency Response Team) Coordination center, which can track the internet security activity and has current information on viruses and worms.
The team further investigates the incident problem in so far as to what extent has it spread and controls the spread by disconnecting the affected systems, as well as the affected devices, to prevent further damage.
Then the team verifies the origin of the incident, so that the root cause and all traces of malicious code are removed.
Then the data and software are restored from the clean, backup files, making sure that no vulnerabilities remain; also, systems are monitored for any sign of recurrence.
An incidence report is made by the team, reflecting the incident and how it was handled and giving recommendations for future response and preventing any such recurrence.
Creating an incident response team in the organization is effective if the IT staff can qualify and fill in the role of incident responders and security operations center analysts. However, for large corporations, security measures are handled with prime importance, so that some corporations outsource from security service providers or contract specialists.
To most organizations, they utilize a mix of their in-house incident team collaborating with an outsourced security analysts. What is most fundamental is for the organization to provide the right, standard training to the in-house incident response team through a security provider whose service is of global standards.