Use Cases for Event Logging

By Kayla Coco-Stotts Posted February 4, 2020

Event logging is essential for informing IT teams about what is occurring within their IT infrastructure.

By offering visibility into assets like systems, applications, and networks, event logging tells IT admins the who, what, when, where, and why of their IT infrastructure, which can be useful in a number of ways. Although there are different types of event logs, we’re going to be focusing on authentication-centric event logging and three common use cases for them.  

1. Auditing and Compliance

Companies both large and small need to meet varying compliance standards. Those standards can include HIPAA, PCI, and SOC 2 Type 1 or 2 among many others, depending on which industry they belong to. Compliance requests can be broad, covering all events from particular areas of the IT infrastructure, or specific to the activity of each user or admin.

Event logging helps organizations reach compliance and pass audits by allowing IT teams to provide essential directory information. Starting with authentication requests to systems, event logs provide meaningful data on users, their actions, their systems, their applications, and their networks. Because of this, event logging produces a trail that IT teams can assemble on-demand for any auditor.

Event logging helps with auditing and compliance by generating an informational log that can span the entirety of an organization’s infrastructure. Such detailed understanding of the users and resources within a corporation makes compliance and auditing a simpler task.

2. Monitoring and Alerting

The frequency of organizations using security monitoring has increased alongside the utilization of cloud-based resources. With so much activity happening both on- and off-prem, it’s difficult for IT departments to keep track of who’s authenticating to which resources at what times.

Data logging makes central monitoring of systems and users possible through real-time alerting. These alerts notify IT teams of suspicious activity, such as intrusion by bad actors, on their endpoints or elsewhere, allowing admins to be proactive about possible threats to IT infrastructure.

3. Troubleshooting

When issues arise, IT teams need to identify when and where the issue occurred. Event logging helps IT departments troubleshoot issues by pinpointing when the issue took place and with whom. 

From there, admins can find information specific to the problem that occured. For example, they can get insight into the type of event that took place. Or, they can seek out information regarding the user, such as which systems, applications, or networks they’ve had access to or why the user cannot access what they need to. 

This sort of tracking helps IT admins remain efficient in their practices; event logging takes the guesswork out of what initially happened.

The Case for Event Logging

Event logging for directory services can increase efficiency and decrease headaches for IT departments. It helps give IT teams insight into the many resources that go into building modern, cloud-based IT infrastructure; hit essential criteria for compliance; and understand their directory.

Overall, event logging is a useful tool that assures IT departments really know what is going on both within their organization and in cloud-based or on-prem infrastructure. Interested in learning more? Check out our documentation on the event logging API.

Kayla Coco-Stotts

Kayla is a content writer at JumpCloud with a B.A. in Print Journalism from the University of Kentucky. She hails from St. Louis, Missouri, and loves to eat good food and hike Boulder's beautiful trails when she is not writing.

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