Chapter 2: Defining Cyber Threat Intelligence

At its core, Threat intelligence provides organizations with evidence-based information needed to develop effective defense strategies and make informed decisions. This vital information exists within three distinct categories, each serving specific purposes:

Types of Threat Intelligence Strategic Threat Intelligence:

This facet furnishes the capacity to assess the broader cyber threat landscape. By comprehending the larger picture, organizations can chart high-level cybersecurity strategies, determine appropriate investments in additional security measures, and proactively combat potential threats.

Tactical Threat Intelligence:

Offering intricate insights into threat actors’ ways of working, this type of intelligence informs organizations about tactics, techniques, procedures (TTP), and helps rectify vulnerabilities in the current defense setup. It guides the fortification of defenses with precise knowledge of threat actors’ methodologies.

Operational Threat Intelligence:

This category zeroes in on real-time investigative essentials. It encompasses knowledge about specific ongoing attacks, enabling organizations to prioritize immediate threats and allocate resources efficiently for rapid response and containment.

Distinguishing Threat Data, Information, and Intelligence

A fundamental comprehension of CTI necessitates clarity on three key concepts: threat data, threat information, and threat intelligence. These distinctions lay the groundwork for precision in the intelligence-gathering process:

Threat Data:

This involves raw, contextually limited data aggregated from diverse sources, including event logs. It serves as the building blocks for crafting meaningful insights.

Threat Information:

Once threat data has been contextualized and structured, it transforms into actionable information. This phase refines the raw data, making it more coherent and insightful.

Threat Intelligence:

The pinnacle of the hierarchy, threat intelligence takes refined information to a higher level. After rigorous processing, analysis, and enrichment with additional context, it culminates in actionable insights. These insights are tailored to guide strategic decisions and proactive threat management.