• SOAR, short for security orchestration, automation, and response, streamlines and automates tasks across people and tools in one platform.
  • Orchestration tools offer an extensive resource inventory encompassing IAM roles and instance types.

As per Future Market Insights, security orchestration, automation, and response (SOAR) technology helps coordinate, execute, and automate tasks between various people and tools all within a single platform.

In today’s ever-evolving and intricate threat environment, security orchestration functions as the strategic coordinator, aligning diverse security tools, technologies, and procedures to establish a cohesive and well-coordinated defense strategy. Let’s delve deeper into the concept of security orchestration first.

What Is Security Orchestration?

As market trends shift, cybersecurity strategies evolve. While it was once discouraged to use multiple antivirus programs on a single device, today’s IT teams commonly employ various security tools simultaneously.

Orchestrating security facilitates the seamless connection and integration of diverse internal and external tools through pre-configured or tailor-made integrations and application programming interfaces (APIs).

It has the capacity to automate repetitive investigative processes, greatly enhancing precision and allowing human resources to focus on valuable insights and immediate responses.

Following our insightful discussion on security orchestration, let’s dive into the acronym ‘SOAR’ and explore its connection to this essential security practice.

What Is SOAR?

SOAR—for security orchestration, automation, and response. This technology helps coordinate, execute, and automate tasks between various people and tools, all within a single platform.

SOAR combines three software capabilities:

  • The management of threats and vulnerabilities
  • Response to security incidents
  • Automation of security operations

In brief, automation targets the streamlining and mechanization of individual tasks. In contrast, orchestration entails synchronizing and integrating diverse security tools and procedures to enhance an organization’s holistic security stance.

Having grasped the essence of SOAR, let’s draw clear distinctions between security orchestration and automation to shed light on their unique roles in cybersecurity.

What is the Difference Between Orchestration Vs. Automation?

In the business landscape, grasping the fundamental difference between automation and orchestration is vital. This knowledge influences how businesses strategize and operate, ensuring adaptability in an increasingly automated and interconnected environment.

Orchestration Automation
Orchestration manages automated tasks to form complete workflows. Automation involves mechanizing a single process or a few related tasks.
It demands reduced involvement from personnel. Engineers must undertake manual tasks to deploy a new operational environment.
Optimal resource utilization is achieved. Utilization of minimal resources beyond the designated task.
Orchestration tools provide a comprehensive inventory of resources, including IAM roles and instance types. Tools and activities follow a specific sequence employing designated tools or groups.
Cloud orchestration focuses on monitoring and alerting within workflows. Cloud automation can forward data to third-party reporting services.

Understanding the distinction between orchestration and automation lays the foundation for appreciating the significant benefits that security orchestration can bring to the table.

Benefits of Security Orchestration

Security orchestration brings a wealth of benefits to cybersecurity. This discussion will explore how it bolsters incident response, efficiency, collaboration, and overall resilience.

  1. Decreased response time

Security orchestration connects tools and solutions, streamlining data sharing for quicker critical information access and incident response. These platforms can also automate responses to various security incidents, preventing damage and isolating infected devices, reducing the need for manual intervention, and enabling security teams to focus on strategic risk management.

  1. Enhanced collaboration

It fosters collaboration among diverse security teams, including IT, incident response, and compliance, through a unified platform that promotes communication and coordination.

  1. Accelerated mitigation

Cybercrimes and security breaches are rising, but steps can be taken to mitigate and contain incidents. Security orchestration solutions prioritize remediation, inform improvement plans, and measure success, streamlining the process without needing multiple security tools.

  1. Effective utilization of threat intelligence

Orchestration seamlessly incorporates threat intelligence feeds, enabling organizations to take proactive measures in defending against recognized threats and vulnerabilities.

  1. Enhanced team collaboration

Security orchestration extends beyond tool integration; it encompasses people, processes, and technology. In the realm of cybersecurity, effective incident response involves various teams and individuals, often leading to fragmented communication and data accessibility. This can hinder collaboration and response to security threats.

It fosters collaboration across diverse security teams, including IT, incident response, and compliance, through a unified platform that promotes effective communication and seamless coordination. Let’s have a look at how it actually works with a real-time example.

How Does Security Orchestration Work?

Companies often struggle with complex cyber incidents, but security orchestration can enhance their incident response efficiency. Fast and machine-driven techniques can replace slow and manual processes. Let’s gain insight into the operational mechanics of security orchestration through a practical illustration.

Scenario: Within a financial institution, Company “ABC” receives an alert about a suspicious email attachment through its email security gateway.

We’ll discuss this with two responses:

Traditional Manual Response Security Orchestration-Automated Response
Step 1 An analyst conducts a manual review of the alert. The security orchestration platform receives the alert from the email security gateway.
Step 2 The analyst investigates the email attachment in a controlled environment. The platform automatically evaluates the alert as high-risk using predefined criteria and threat intelligence.
Step 3 If the attachment is malicious, the analyst mitigates the threat by isolating devices and blocking malicious IP addresses. It triggers an automated response playbook, isolating the affected device, blocking malicious IP addresses, and alerting the incident response team.
Step 4 The incident response team is notified to evaluate the situation and commence additional measures. Simultaneously, the platform updates the incident tracking system and creates compliance reports.
Step 5 The incident response team is promptly alerted and furnished with pertinent details for a rapid evaluation.


In summary, security orchestration plays a critical role in contemporary cybersecurity approaches. Its capacity to automate intricate processes, foster teamwork, and accelerate incident resolution provides enterprises with a robust defense against the constantly changing threat environment.

It goes beyond automation to ensure seamless tool integration. Utilizing cutting-edge tools to their fullest potential strengthens our security infrastructure and cyber defenses.

Market guide of Gartner security orchestration, automation, and response solutions in 2020 gives insights on SOAR offerings.

Enhance your expertise by accessing a range of valuable security-related whitepapers in our resource center.