NOC vs SOC: Which Should You Implement in Your Business?

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Get the best protection with NOC vs SOC! (Source: UnSplash)

Do you want to prevent downtimes on your network? Do you want to improve your network’s viability? Well, chances are, you’ll need to implement NOC and SOC. What are these? What do they do? And which is best, NOC vs SOC? That’s what we’re going to find out in this exploratory article. I’ll give you the low down on Network Operations Centers and Security Operations Centers. 

Without further ado, let’s jump into NOC!

What Is a Network Operations Center (NOC)?

In short, NOC provides your company technical support. It assists in identifying and resolving incidents, such as network latency or down servers. The NOC team is going to be the first line of defense against downtime. Remember that downtime equals lost time and money, so it’s crucial to avoid downtime as much as possible

Besides that, the NOC team’s goal is to improve the company’s overall IT performance. To do that, they’ll look for ways to increase productivity and efficiency. 

Here’s a quick list of some of the functions the NOC team performs:

  • IT performance management
  • Patch management
  • Backup and storage management
  • Email management
  • Software installation management
  • Incident management and remediation
  • Endpoint management 

Now we know the NOC, let’s learn about SOC teams. 

What Is a Security Operations Center (SOC)?

The answer to that question is in the name: Security! An SOC is a very important department. Its sole focus is on security. And today, this is the cornerstone of any enterprise

The SOC team consists of security analysts. They’ll identify threats and take measures to protect the company. Daily, the SOC team will monitor the company’s websites, networks, applications, and other IT systems. The team will also investigate any strange or unexpected behavior

Additionally, here are some of the tasks the SOC team performs:

  • Activity log management
  • Network monitoring management
  • Alert management 
  • Incident response
  • Root cause investigation 
  • Compliance management 

Clearly, both NOC and SOC can be very helpful to your business. But what are the differences between them? Let’s take a closer look at NOC vs SOC. 

NOC vs SOC: The Main Differences and Similarities 

Both the NOC and the SOC serve similar purposes. Both teams ensure your network and IT systems can meet your business’s demands. The differences between NOC vs SOC only appear when we dive into the details

The NOC team checks that your systems can meet business needs during normal operations. They also address disruptions such as service outages, natural disasters, etc. Conversely, the SOC works to protect the network from external bad actors and cyber security threats. 

To clarify, the NOC is working against naturally occurring events. For example, that includes power cuts, latency, and server unresponsiveness. 

In contrast, the SOC fights human-made events.  These could be cyber attacks, malware, viruses, etc. 

So now, you have a clearer view of NOC vs SOC. But which one should you have in your company?

NOC vs SOC: Which Is Better?

Image off a corner of a building, where two security cameras are looking in opposite directions while the contrast of the building is darker on the left and lighter on the right.
You can’t choose between NOC vs SOC, they’re both working to keep your network intact! (Source: UnSplash)

The answer is both. You really need to have both centers if you want your IT department to be healthy and strong. Your network will face all sorts of events and you need the proper teams to address different challenges. This will also help you serve your business and deliver to your customers.

Pro Tips

Instead of thinking about NOC vs SOC, implement both. And here are a few tips to optimize your implementation

  • Support each NOC and SOC role with documentation
  • Track operation metrics
  • Create a tiered workflow

Now, we’ve settled the NOC vs SOC discussion. Let’s recap!

Final Words

To sum up, we’ve talked in detail about NOC vs SOC. Generally, NOC handles natural events. Conversely, SOC manages human-driven risks. Your company will face both types of events. As a result, you need to avoid disruptions at all costs. 

That’s why you need to know about both NOC vs SOC. This isn’t a choice, and neither one is better than the other. Rather, you flat out need both to be successful

Do you have more questions? Are you looking for more related topics? Check out the FAQ and Resources sections below! 

FAQ

What is an NOC?

NOC stands for Network Operations Center. An NOC is a team of engineers and analysts constantly watching the network for unexpected behavior and anomalies. When they spot these events, they investigate further. Then, the team diagnoses the issue and starts remediation. The goal of the NOC is to keep the network up and prevent downtime

What is an SOC?

SOC stands for Security Operations Center. An SOC is a team of engineers and security analysts continually monitoring the network for cyber threats. But these threats must come from human bad actors. The SOC team also blocks or remediates attacks and quickly prevent unauthorized access to the network. Otherwise, your company will face a whole host of larger problems. 

What are natural network events?

Natural network events include power outages, latency, unresponsive servers, creating patches, software installation management, etc. These are events that occur by themselves with no human-based cause. Your NOC team generally addresses these events.

What are cyberattacks?

Cyber attacks are purpose-driven attacks that aim to harm your business. Generally, they come from an individual or a group. Attacks usually aim to destroy a network. But in some cases, the attackers want to access your information or commandeer your infrastructure. 

How can the NOC and SOC work together?

Both teams must be in constant communication and work towards the same goal. Both teams should also develop and adhere to policy, process, procedure, and protocol. If the teams don’t adhere to these guidelines,  it could spell disaster for your organization. 

Resources

TechGenix: Article on Network Observability

Find out what network observability is and what it can do for your company. 

TechGenix: Guide to Monitoring Network Connectivity using Azure Network Watcher 

Learn about monitoring network connectivity with Azure Network Watcher

TechGenix: Article on Network Security

Explore the world of network security and what it can do to support your business. 

TechGenix: Article on Network Security Keys

Learn what your network security key is and how to find it. 

TechGenix: Article on Cloud Network Security  

Learn how to develop a cloud network security policy for your business. 

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