Skip to main content

 

 

Cisco Defense Orchestrator

Cisco Security Analytics and Logging (SaaS) for FTD Devices

About Cisco Security Analytics and Logging (SaaS)

Cisco Security Analytics and Logging (SaaS) allows you to capture connection, intrusion, file, malware, and Security Intelligence events from all of your Firepower Threat Defense (FTD) devices and view them in one place in Cisco Defense Orchestrator (CDO).

The events are stored in the Cisco cloud and viewable from the Event Logging page in CDO where you can filter and review them to gain a clear understanding of what security rules are triggering in your network. The Logging and Troubleshooting package gives you these capabilities.

With the Logging Analytics and Detection package (formerly Firewall Analytics and Logging package), the system can apply Stealthwatch Cloud dynamic entity modeling to your FTD events, and use behavioral modeling analytics to generate Stealthwatch Cloud observations and alerts. If you obtain a Total Network Analytics and Monitoring package, the system applies dynamic entity modeling to both your FTD events and your network traffic, and generates observations and alerts. You can cross-launch from CDO to a SWC portal provisioned for you, using Cisco Single Sign-On.

How FTD Events are Displayed on the CDO Events Viewer  

Connection, intrusion, file, malware, and Security Intelligence events are generated when an individual rule is configured to log events and network traffic matches the rule criteria. After the events are stored in the Cisco cloud, you can view them in CDO. There are two methods of configuring your FTD to send events to the Cisco cloud:

  • You can install multiple Secure Event Connectors (SECs) and send events generated by a rule, on any device, to any of the SECs as if it were a syslog server. The SEC then forwards the event to the Cisco cloud.
  • If your FTD was onboarded to CDO using a registration token, you can send events directly to the Cisco cloud using a control in the Firepower Device Manager.  

How an Event is Sent from an FTD to the Cisco Cloud by way of the Secure Event Connector 

With the basic Logging and Troubleshooting license, this is how an FTD event reaches the Cisco cloud:

  1. You onboard your FTD to CDO using username and password or by using a registration token. 
  2. You configure individual rules, such as access control rules, Security Intelligence rules, and SSL decryption rules, to forward events to any one of your SECs as if it were a syslog server. In access control rules, you can also enable file and malware policies, and intrusion policies, and forward events generated by those polices to the SEC.  
  3. You configure File/Malware logging in System Settings > Logging for file events.
  4. You configure Intrusion Logging in System Settings > Logging for intrusion events.
  5. The SEC forwards the events to the Cisco cloud where the events are stored.
  6. CDO displays events from the Cisco cloud in its Events Logging page based on the filters you set. 

With the Logging Analytics and Detection or Total Network Analytics and Monitoring license, the following also occur:

  1. Stealthwatch Cloud applies analytics to the FTD connection events stored in the Cisco cloud.
  2. Generated observations and alerts are accessible from the Stealthwatch Cloud portal associated with your CDO portal.
  3. From the CDO portal, you can cross-launch your Stealthwatch Cloud portal to review these observations and alerts.

How Events are Sent Directly from an FTD to the Cisco Cloud 

With the basic Logging and Troubleshooting license, this is how FTD events reach the Cisco cloud:

  1. You onboard your FTD to CDO using a registration token. 
  2. You configure individual rules, such as access control rules, Security Intelligence rules, and SSL decryption rules, to log events but you don't specify a syslog server for them to be sent to. In access control rules, you can also enable file and malware policies and intrusion policies, and forward events generated by those polices to the Cisco cloud. 
  3. File events and Intrusion events are sent to the Cisco cloud if file and malware policies and intrusion policies are configured in the access control rules to log connection events. 
  4. You activate Cloud Logging on the FTD's Firepower Device Manager (FDM) and the events logged in the various rules are sent to the Cisco cloud. 
  5. CDO pulls events from the Cisco cloud based on the filters you set and displays them in its Events viewer.

With the Logging Analytics and Detection or Total Network Analytics and Monitoring license, the following also occur:

  1. Stealthwatch Cloud applies analytics to the FTD connection events stored in the Cisco cloud.
  2. Generated observations and alerts are accessible from the Stealthwatch Cloud portal associated with your CDO portal.
  3. From the CDO portal, you can cross-launch your Stealthwatch Cloud portal to review these observations and alerts.

Configuration Comparison

Here is a summary of the CDO configuration differences between sending events to the Cisco cloud through an SEC and sending events directly to the Cisco cloud.

FTD Device Configuration When Sending Events through a
Secure Event Connector (SEC)
When Sending Events Directly to Cisco Cloud
CDO onboarding method for FTD

Credentials (Username and password)

Registration token

Registration token
FTD Version Support

FTD 6.4+

FTD 6.5+

Cisco Security Analytics and Logging (SaaS) Licenses

Logging and Troubleshooting

Logging Analytics and Detection (optional)

Total Network Analytics and Monitoring (optional)

Logging and Troubleshooting

Logging Analytics and Detection (optional)

Total Network Analytics and Monitoring (optional)

FTD Licenses

Base license

Threat-If you want to collect connection events from intrusion rules, file control rules, or security intelligence filtering. 

Malware-If you want to collect connection events from file control rules.

Base license

Threat-If you want to collect connection events from intrusion rules, file control rules, or security intelligence filtering. 

Malware-If you want to collect connection events from file control rules.

Secure Event Connector Required N/A
Data Compression* Events are compressed* Events are not compressed*
Data Plan Required Required

* Note - Data subscriptions and your Historical Monthly Usage are based on the amount uncompressed data you use.

Components in the Solution

Cisco Security Analytics and Logging (SaaS) uses these components to deliver events to CDO:

Secure Device Connector (SDC) - The SDC is the proxy between CDO and your FTD devices. The login credentials for the FTD are stored on the SDC. The SDC can be installed "in the cloud" by CDO support, or it can be installed by you "on-premises" on a virtual machine you manage within your enterprise. 

Secure Event Connector (SEC)-The SEC is an application that receives events from your FTDs and forwards them to the Cisco cloud. Once in the Cisco cloud, you can view the events on CDO's Event Logging page or analyze them with Stealthwatch Cloud. You may have one or more SECs associated with your tenant.

Whether your SDC is a "cloud SDC" or an "on-premises" SDC, you install the Secure Event Connector on an on-premises Secure Device Connector virtual machine you manage within your enterprise. 

Firepower Threat Defense (FTD)-The FTD is Cisco's next generation firewall. Beyond stateful inspection of network traffic and access control, the FTD provides capabilities such as protection from malware and application-layer attacks, integrated intrusion prevention, and cloud-delivered threat intelligence. 

If you have a Logging Analytics and Detection or Total Network Analytics and Monitoring license, Cisco Security Analytics and Logging (SaaS) uses the following to further analyze events delivered to CDO:

Stealthwatch Cloud (SWC)-SWC applies dynamic entity modeling to FTD events, generating detections based on this information. This provides a deeper analysis of telemetry gathered from your network, allowing you to identify trends and examine anomalous behavior in your network traffic.

Licensing

To configure this solution you need the following accounts and licenses:

Cisco Defense Orchestrator. You must have a CDO tenant. Your CDO tenant must connected to FTD devices through an on-premises Secure Device Connector. 

Secure Device Connector. There is no separate license for a Secure Device Connector.

Secure Event Connector. There is no separate license for a Secure Event Connector.

Cisco Security Analytics and Logging (SaaS). You need to buy the Logging and Troubleshooting license. The goal of this package is to provide network operations teams with real-time and historical events derived from their on-boarded Firepower Threat Defense devices for the purposes of troubleshooting and analyzing traffic in their network. 

You can also buy a Logging Analytics and Detection or Total Network Analytics and Monitoring license to apply SWC analytics. The goal of these packages is to provide network operations teams additional insight into the FTD events (and network traffic with the Total Network Analytics and Monitoring license) to better identify possible anomalous behavior and respond to it.

License Name Provided Functionality Available License Durations Functionality Prerequisites
Logging and Troubleshooting
  • View FTD events and event detail within CDO, both as a live feed and as a historical view
  • 1 year
  • 3 years
  • 5 years
  • CDO
  • An on-premises FTD deployment running version 6.4 or greater
  • Deployment of one or more SECs to pass FTD events to the cloud
Logging Analytics and Detection (formerly Firewall Analytics and Monitoring)

Logging and Troubleshooting functionality, plus:

  • Apply dynamic entity modeling and behavioral analytics to your FTD events
  • Open alerts in Stealthwatch Cloud based on FTD event data, cross-launching from the CDO event viewer
  • 1 year
  • 3 years
  • 5 years
  • CDO
  • An on-premises FTD deployment running version 6.4 or greater
  • Deployment of one or more SECs to pass FTD events to the cloud
  • A Stealthwatch Cloud portal
    • you can associate an existing Stealthwatch Cloud portal, or later provision a new Stealthwatch Cloud portal
Total Network Analytics and Monitoring

Logging Analytics and Detection, plus:

  • Apply dynamic entity modeling and behavioral analytics to FTD events, on-premises network traffic, and cloud-based network traffic
  • Open alerts in Stealthwatch Cloud based on the combination of FTD event data, on-premises network traffic flow data collected by Stealthwatch Cloud sensors, and cloud-based network traffic passed to Stealthwatch Cloud, cross-launching from the CDO event viewer
  • 1 year
  • 3 years
  • 5 years
  • CDO
  • An on-premises FTD deployment running version 6.4 or greater
  • Deployment of one or more SECs to pass FTD events to the cloud
  • Deployment of at least one Stealthwatch Cloud sensor version 4.1 or greater to pass network traffic flow data to the cloud OR integrating Stealthwatch Cloud with a cloud-based deployment, to pass network traffic flow data to Stealthwatch Cloud
  • A Stealthwatch Cloud portal
    • you can associate an existing Stealthwatch Cloud portal, or later provision a new Stealthwatch Cloud portal

Firepower Threat Defense. You need to have the following licenses to run the FTD and create rules that generate security events:

License

Duration

Granted Capabilities

Base (automatically included)

Perpetual

All features not covered by the optional term licenses.

You must also specify whether to Allow export-controlled functionality on the products registered with this token. You can select this option only if your country meets export-control standards. This option controls your use of advanced encryption and the features that require advanced encryption.

Threat

Term-based

Intrusion detection and prevention—Intrusion policies analyze network traffic for intrusions and exploits and, optionally, drop offending packets.

File control—File policies detect and, optionally, block users from uploading (sending) or downloading (receiving) files of specific types. AMP for Firepower, which requires a Malware license, allows you to inspect and block files that contain malware. You must have the Threat license to use any type of File policy.

Security Intelligence filtering—Drop selected traffic before the traffic is subjected to analysis by access control rules. Dynamic feeds allow you to immediately drop connections based on the latest intelligence.

Malware

Term-based

File policies that check for malware, which use Cisco Advanced Malware Protection (AMP) with AMP for Firepower (network-based Advanced Malware Protection) and Cisco Threat Grid.

File policies can detect and block malware in files transmitted over your network.

Data Plans

You need to buy a data storage plan that reflects the number of events the Cisco cloud receives from your on-boarded FTDs on a daily basis. The best way to determine your ingest rate is to participate in a free trial of Cisco Security Analytics and Logging (SaaS) before you buy it. This will give you a good estimate of your event volume. In addition, you can use the Logging Volume Estimator Tool

Caution: It is possible to configure your FTD to send events to the Cisco cloud directly and by way of the Secure Event Connector simultaneously. If you do this, the same event will be "ingested" twice and counted against your data plan twice, though it will only be stored in the Cisco cloud once. Be careful to send events to the Cisco cloud using one method or the other to avoid incurring unnecessary fees. 

Data plans are available in 1 GB daily volumes increments, and in 1, 3 or 5 year terms. See the Cisco Security Analytics and Logging Ordering Guide for information about data plans.

Note: If you have a Security Analytics and Logging license and data plan, then obtain a different license at a later date, that alone does not require you to obtain a different data plan. If your network traffic throughput changes and you obtain a different data plan, that alone does not require you to obtain a different Security Analytics and Logging license.

30-day Free Trial

You can request a 30-day risk-free trial by logging in to CDO and navigating Monitoring > Event Logging tab. On completion of the 30-day trial, you can order the desired event data volume to continue the service from Cisco Commerce Workspace (CCW), by following the instructions in the Cisco Security Analytics and Logging ordering guide.