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Dropbox Securitybot Hopes To Combat Alert Fatigue

Sam Pudwell joined Silicon UK as a reporter in December 2016. As well as being the resident Cloud aficionado, he covers areas such as cyber security, government IT and sports technology, with the aim of going to as many events as possible.

Securitybot sends a Slack message to employees if unusual or potentially malicious activity is detected

Dropbox is aiming to solve the problem of alert fatigue with the release of an open source chatbot called Securitybot, which automatically collects alerts from security monitoring tools and verifies the incidents with employees.

This combats the need for security teams to manually contact employees for verification when someone gains access to a sensitive part of the system, thus enabling them to sort through alerts faster and more efficiently.

Dropbox Securitybot

Securitybot

Built for Slack, Securitybot is tied into Dropbox’s detection and alerting system to speed up the detection process by reducing the number of false positives and immediately escalating confirmed incidents.

The bot looks out for unusual or potentially malicious activity and sends a Slack message to the employee in question if such activity is detected. The employee is asked to confirm whether they performed the action that triggered the alert and the response is logged for the security team.

If the employee did not carry out the action, the response is sent to the security team for further investigation. This system ensures that the majority of alerting stays in the background, but alerts that require urgent attention and response are highlighted.

All responses are secured with two-factor authentication, so even if an attacker manages to compromise Slack, the bot itself can’t be fooled.

“Securitybot moves between grabbing new alerts from our monitoring tools and communicating with employees,” Dropbox said. “Whenever a new alert is encountered, it’s logged and a message is queued for whomever triggered it.

“Regular polling ensures that we get alerts promptly and can deal with them as soon as possible. Later, when responses are collected, they’re brought back into our monitoring system to be available alongside the rest of our alerts.”

The release of Securitybot follows hot on the heels of the launch of Dropbox Paper and Smart Sync, both team-focused features that provide a collaboration workspace and access to all of your cloud files without the need to download them onto your desktop or laptop.

At the launch event in San Francisco, Dropbox also announced that it has become the first SaaS company to achieve $1 billion in revenue run rate, condemned US President Donald Trump’s “un-American” immigration orders and addressed the rumours regarding a possible IPO.

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