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Thursday, June 13, 2024

Security Does Not Have To Be Expensive: Open-Source Tools for the Security Operation Center (SOC)

Tools don’t make a good engineer, but a good engineer can become great with the right tools.

Companies usually don’t have the budget to establish and run a security operation center, either due to the cost of the experienced personnel required to run it, or/and the right tools required to assist in the job.

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To aid companies in the latter, in this article, we’ll introduce you to a curated list of open-source cybersecurity tools for the SOC, each accompanied by a brief description of its purpose and utility.



TheHive is an incident management system designed to streamline and simplify your incident response efforts. It provides a collaborative platform for your security team to efficiently assess and mitigate security incidents. With features like case management, task assignment, and integrated analysis tools, TheHive empowers your team to coordinate and respond to incidents with precision.



FIR, short for Fast Incident Response, is a tool that specializes in aiding you during the initial stages of an incident. It allows you to collect and manage incident data quickly, facilitating rapid response and analysis. FIR’s intuitive interface and powerful capabilities make it a valuable asset in your incident response arsenal.

Suricata: IDS, network metadata, and PCAP capable


Suricata is a versatile intrusion detection system (IDS) that not only identifies threats but also captures network metadata and packet capture (PCAP) data. This makes it an indispensable tool for monitoring network traffic, detecting anomalies, and investigating security incidents. Suricata’s ability to analyze both traffic patterns and content sets it apart in the realm of network security.

EVEbox: Alert triage


EVEbox complements Suricata by providing a dedicated platform for alert triage. It allows you to review and categorize alerts generated by Suricata efficiently. With EVEbox, you can prioritize alerts, investigate suspicious activities, and take timely action to mitigate threats.



Snort is a renowned open-source IDS that has been a staple in the cybersecurity community for years. It excels at detecting and alerting on network-based threats. Snort’s extensive rule sets and customizable configurations make it adaptable to a wide range of network security needs.



Formerly known as Bro, Zeek is a powerful network analysis framework. It captures and analyzes network traffic, providing valuable insights into network behavior. Zeek’s scripting capabilities enable custom analysis and the creation of tailored network security solutions.



Wireshark is the go-to tool for packet analysis. Its user-friendly interface and comprehensive protocol support make it indispensable for deep-dive network troubleshooting and forensic analysis. Whether you’re identifying anomalies or examining network communication, Wireshark is a must-have.



Moloch is a full packet capture system designed for large-scale network traffic analysis. It enables the storage and retrieval of network packet data for in-depth investigation. Moloch’s scalability and indexing capabilities make it an invaluable asset for storing and querying historical network traffic.

Google Stenographer


Google Stenographer is a packet capture tool developed by Google. It excels in capturing, indexing, and storing network traffic at scale. This tool is particularly useful for organizations with high traffic volumes that require efficient packet capture and retrieval for security analysis.



Netsniff-ng is a versatile Linux networking toolkit that offers a wide array of network analysis and monitoring tools. It provides solutions for packet capture, traffic generation, and network testing, making it a valuable addition to your networking toolbox.

Security Onion


Security Onion is a comprehensive distribution for network security monitoring. It integrates several open-source tools, including Suricata, Zeek, and Wireshark, into a cohesive platform. With Security Onion, you can set up a powerful network security monitoring environment quickly.



RockNSM, short for Rock Network Security Monitoring, is another Linux distribution focused on network security monitoring. It simplifies the deployment of essential network monitoring tools, enabling you to set up a robust monitoring infrastructure efficiently.

NXLog Community Edition: Logging agent


NXLog is a versatile logging agent that facilitates the collection, processing, and forwarding of log data. It supports various log formats and integrates seamlessly with SIEM solutions and log management platforms.



OSQuery provides real-time visibility into your systems by allowing you to query and analyze operating system data using SQL-like queries. It simplifies system monitoring, asset inventory, and incident response by making valuable system information easily accessible.



OSSEC, or Open Source Security, is a host-based intrusion detection system (HIDS). It monitors system activities and file integrity, providing early detection of potential threats to your systems.



Sysmon, developed by Microsoft, is a Windows system monitoring tool. It provides detailed information about system activity, helping you track and investigate suspicious events on Windows-based endpoints.

Wazuh: HIDS


Wazuh is another HIDS solution that combines intrusion detection, vulnerability detection, and security information and event management (SIEM) capabilities. It offers comprehensive security monitoring for a wide range of platforms and applications.



Kansa is a versatile incident response and threat-hunting tool. It automates the collection of valuable system information and performs various checks to identify potential security issues, making it a valuable asset in incident response scenarios.



Velociraptor is an endpoint visibility and collection tool designed for incident response and digital forensics. It provides extensive querying capabilities and allows you to collect artifacts and information from endpoints efficiently.

Cuckoo Sandbox


Cuckoo Sandbox is a dynamic malware analysis tool. It executes suspicious files in a controlled environment and monitors their behavior, providing detailed reports on malware activities. This tool is invaluable for dissecting and understanding malware threats.

REMnux: malware analysis tools Linux distro


REMnux is a Linux distribution specifically tailored for malware analysis. It includes a collection of powerful analysis tools and utilities for dissecting and analyzing malware samples.



MISP, or Malware Information Sharing Platform & Threat Sharing, is a threat intelligence platform designed to facilitate the sharing of structured threat information. It enables organizations to collaborate on threat intelligence and improve their cybersecurity posture.



OpenCTI, short for Open Cyber Threat Intelligence, is an open-source platform for managing and sharing cyber threat intelligence. It offers comprehensive capabilities for collecting, analyzing, and disseminating threat information, empowering organizations to enhance their situational awareness and threat response.



Vectr is a collaborative platform designed for purple team testing and reporting. It enables red and blue teams to work together to assess and improve an organization’s security posture. Vectr streamlines the testing process and facilitates the sharing of findings and recommendations.

Elastic Stack


The Elastic Stack, also known as the ELK Stack, consists of Elasticsearch, Logstash, and Kibana, along with Beats for data collection. It forms a robust SIEM (Security Information and Event Management) and log management solution. Elastic Stack provides real-time analysis, visualization, and alerting capabilities for your log and event data.

Elastalert: Alerting Engine


Elastalert is a flexible and powerful alerting engine that seamlessly integrates with the Elastic Stack. It enables you to define complex alerting rules and conditions, ensuring that you are promptly notified of critical security events.

NSA Walkoff


NSA Walkoff is an open-source security orchestration automation and response (SOAR) platform. It streamlines and automates security workflows, enabling your team to respond more effectively to security incidents and threats.



Shuffle is a dynamic automation and orchestration framework designed for security operations. It empowers security teams to automate repetitive tasks and processes, allowing them to focus on more complex security challenges.

IBM Node-Red: generalized automation/orchestration framework


IBM Node-Red is a versatile automation and orchestration framework that can be customized to meet various security automation needs. It provides a visual interface for designing and deploying automation flows, making it accessible even for those with limited programming experience.

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Dimitris is an Information Technology and Cybersecurity professional with more than 20 years of experience in designing, building and maintaining efficient and secure IT infrastructures.
Among others, he is a certified: CISSP, CISA, CISM, ITIL, COBIT and PRINCE2, but his wide set of knowledge and technical management capabilities go beyond these certifications. He likes acquiring new skills on penetration testing, cloud technologies, virtualization, network security, IoT and many more.


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