AlienVault OSSIM

14 Ratings
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Score 8.2 out of 101

Symantec Critical System Protection

7 Ratings
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Score 7.8 out of 101

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Likelihood to Recommend

AlienVault OSSIM

If this is your first experience with a SIEM, this one can get you started. Take the time to learn the ins and outs of the product and you'll most likely be satisfied with it if your company is an SMB. If you need compliance reports, OSSIM is too small for you, you'll need to go with USM or USM Anywhere.
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Symantec Critical System Protection

Symantec Critical System Protection (CSP) is very well suited for environments that do not change such as point of sale systems and critical servers. This product is spectacular at protecting end of life operating systems when supporting legacy software prevents upgrades. When security updates are no longer available, CSP will prevent exploits and other malware from taking advantage. This product is not well suited for systems that require a lot of changes. For one, it does not notify when a change has been blocked by CSP, causing some server administrators to waste many hours chasing a phantom technical problem when turning off CSP could have solved it right away. Also, profiling takes time so systems that constantly change would need hundreds of exceptions made.
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Feature Rating Comparison

Security Information and Event Management (SIEM)

AlienVault OSSIM
8.2
Symantec Critical System Protection
2.8
Centralized event and log data collection
AlienVault OSSIM
8.3
Symantec Critical System Protection
3.0
Correlation
AlienVault OSSIM
8.0
Symantec Critical System Protection
Event and log normalization
AlienVault OSSIM
8.0
Symantec Critical System Protection
Deployment flexibility
AlienVault OSSIM
8.7
Symantec Critical System Protection
2.0
Integration with Identity and Access Management Tools
AlienVault OSSIM
7.5
Symantec Critical System Protection
Custom dashboards and views
AlienVault OSSIM
8.0
Symantec Critical System Protection
3.0
Host and network-based intrusion detection
AlienVault OSSIM
8.7
Symantec Critical System Protection
3.0

Pros

  • Asset discovery. Once installed in a centric, network-accessible server, OSSIM can poll all your endpoints with common protocols (SSH, SNMP, WMI) to detect and discover site-wide assets to monitor. You only need to group them by your own criteria once added to the product.
  • SIEM Event Correlation. You can define quite complex correlation rules to detect possible suspicious or malicious actions or attempts in your network, in order to categorize them as real threats or as false positives, thus streamlining your risk assessment and management.
  • Ease of installation. The entire AlienVault OSSIM is self-contained in an ISO file, which can be burned into a DVD or just mounted in your server of choice (physical or virtual) for deployment. The installation process is automated and quote verbosed, with options for static IP, email messaging and others.
  • Ease of access. Being AlienVault OSSIM a self-contained appliance, it can be accessed via web by any device that supports a web browser, being that desktops, workstation, mobile devices, etc. The OSSIM dashboard and other features are automatically rearranged to adapt to the particular device being in use.
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  • Prevents exploits, unwanted executables, registry changes, and system file changes
  • Can allow exceptions for software vendors such as Microsoft or Adobe
  • Prevents lateral movement with certain network rules configured
  • Can record file changes
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Cons

  • OSSIM, being an open source solution, lacks log management (a treat that the full USM has). Perhaps a feature to include a lightweight version inside the SIEM Correlation engine can be appreciated.
  • The appliance also lacks support for Cloud-based servers and apps. This feature is also present in USM, so it's unlikely this will appear in OSSIM, but I'd suggest also a reduced version of it included in this appliance.
  • More integration with third-party solutions such as BMC Remedy and ServiceNow, although this can be emulated through email alerts, as most ITSM solutions have the ability of converting incoming email messages into tickets.
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  • Tuning takes a very long time
  • Turning the product on or off can take time
  • When an action is prevented by CSP, there is no pop up or notification, making this a burden for server administrators
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Usability

AlienVault OSSIM8.0
Based on 1 answer
AlienVault OSSIM is far easy to use and manage - provided you know what you're doing. As any SIEM application, there is some background knowledge required in order to take advantage of the product's functionalities, such as the log correlation and analysis. Other than that, the application is quite usable and robust.
Jose Quintero profile photo
No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic

Support

No score
No answers yet
No answers on this topic
Symantec Critical System Protection10.0
Based on 1 answer
They respond quickly and efficiently without the need to reiterate the actual issue. Their backline support is amazing and always there for us when it is needed. They explain the troubleshooting steps taken and what they did to help us resolve the issue just incase it creeps up again we have the information to correct it ourselves.
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Alternatives Considered

AlienVault OSSIM has the upper ante in initial deployment price, being that it's open source. Also, with perhaps the exception of SolarWinds, it has a lower optimal requirements for onsite deployment, hence your OPEX won't be hit very hard by investing in new hardware to suit the appliance. The correlation engine is somewhat more robust that their counterparts in LogRhythm and SolarWinds, and the IDS (both NIDS and HIDS) are more reliable as well in terms of results. Finally, although Tenable SecurityCenter is more robust in dashboards, alerts and reports, it comes short in front of OSSIM in terms of real-time IDS and SIEM correlation.
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We evaluated Bit 9 and you have more flexibility with the rule set and do not rely on the cloud to tell you what is approved and not approved. You build out the policies the way you need them to be and who better knows the environment that the people that work it daily.
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Return on Investment

  • The ROI of OSSIM itself is, obviously, immediate, being that it's a free, open-source product. However, you must take into account other inherent investments to cover up for the lack of official support, such as certified agents or consultants that take care of the management and maintenance of the product once in production.
  • On the other hand, the potential loss of information and interruption of operativity due to malware and other threats is really unmeasurable. The implicit savings in OSSIM as a SIEM (Security Information and Event Management) are really the major positive impact on your organization's revenue.
  • Finally, and from a reseller's point of view, reselling OSSIM has the big plus of being a professional services-only asset, given that the appliance itself is free of charge. The only thing to consider is the initial investment in team members with the required capacitation and knowledge to address such professional services to potential customers.
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  • Great protection for unchanging systems
  • We have comfort that the protected systems are safe from intrusion
  • Excellent price
Jennifer Greulich, GSED, GSEC profile photo

Pricing Details

AlienVault OSSIM

General
Free Trial
Free/Freemium Version
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
No
Additional Pricing Details

Symantec Critical System Protection

General
Free Trial
Free/Freemium Version
Premium Consulting/Integration Services
Entry-level set up fee?
No
Additional Pricing Details