IBM QRadar Review

User-friendly, offers easy integrations, and has a straightforward setup


What is our primary use case?

The solution is primarily used for threat detection and response. QRadar can be integrated with other services from IBM such as Watson, among others. The main need is for threat detection, incident response, and dealing with threats or hunting threats. 

What else? I mean, it's always you're looking for threats. Usually, whoever buys this SIM solution or buys QRadar, for example, is looking for hidden threats and they get the logs to see what's happening within their system. They want a solution that looks very deep inside in order to correlate those logs and see if there's any information that they can get out of those logs or even live packets that are spanning through their networks. Therefore, it's usually threat hunting. That's the main thing, Others might use it to understand the system, and how it's performing overall.  However, that's the lesser use case.

What is most valuable?

Inside IBM QRadar there are a lot of engines that actually work to help us to do the correlation and normalization as well for the logs that we're receiving from multiple devices. IBM is very powerful in that regard. 

QRadar, as a solution, can integrate with a lot of other applications. You can write your own custom rules if you want to. We can ask it to detect whatever we want it to, even with the devices that are not supported to send logs. IBM QRadar can understand these types of commands and we can still integrate and write our own rules to help us to detect those logs that are coming from, for example, IoT devices or from other devices that usually we don't understand.

It can handle really a huge number of logs with fewer false positives. We can use the artificial intelligence and the rules that IBM is providing to make it really smart. The solution can help you predict even the false positives when we are alerting the admin or the security admin about some offenses that we have seen from the logs.

Their product is very user-friendly.

Customer service is very good and very helpful.

The initial setup is quite straightforward.

The solution can scale.

The solution is very stable.

What needs improvement?

As per Gartner, maybe the price makes it so that the customers are not going for IBM QRadar. It's a little bit pricey compared to other solutions in the market. More or less that's the area that needs to be improved. That's usually the main concern that we receive from the customers - that it's a little bit pricey. That's the only thing I can say.

The custom rules could be simplified more or it should be possible to use a different language, other than the ones that the solution is already using. They should add other languages into the mix. You need some advanced customers in order to use the custom rules or to use their rules in order to configure the IBM QRadar in a proper way. Usually, they find it very difficult, especially if they don't have the experience.

Sometimes it works and catches whatever we want, however, sometimes it doesn't work. That's in rare cases, however, that's one thing that they need to maybe enhance.

For how long have I used the solution?

I've been working with the solution for three years or so.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

For stability, I'm not a customer who's using it on daily basis, however, from feedback that I'm getting from the customers who are attending to the solution, I've heard that this solution is stable. That's why it's in the leader area in Gartner. If you compare it to others in Gartner, it shows how their product is actually efficient. Whether I get QRadar, whether it's Splunk, whether it's LogRhythm, all of those products as a SIM are very good at that point. They're all quite reliable.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The scalability is very good. The product is scalable. A company shouldn't have trouble expanding it if they need to.

We typically work with banks and bigger organizations.

How are customer service and technical support?

Technical support has been very good. They are helpful and responsive.

I've also learned a lot from the documentation, especially the online documentation. Due to the fact that I'm an official instructor for IBM, I have my other resources too, on the Learning Center from IBM. Documentation is not a problem. It's very helpful.

How was the initial setup?

The initial setup is very straightforward. It's not overly complex. It's quite easy.

The deployment takes time, definitely. You've got to prepare for your solution so that it's going to work in spanning all the other devices too. That doesn't mean it's a complex process, it just means it takes a bit.

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

IBM QRadar is pricey, and therefore, usually small enterprises are not able to afford it. Usually, probably most of the customers are usually large enterprises.

What other advice do I have?

I'm actually teaching IBM and some services such as IBM QRadar, as part of my work. I'm familiar with Splunk, however, I'm not working with it on a daily basis. I'm teaching that technology to others. I'm not a customer. I'm using it for teaching purposes. I'm working in a training center. I'm not dealing with it on a daily basis, however, I understand how the product works. We do sometimes help integrate it and work as consultants occasionally as well.

While 7.4 is out, we're currently working with version 7.3.

Overall, I would rate the product at an eight out of ten. There's more to be done on it, however, we are mostly pleased with its capabilities.

Which deployment model are you using for this solution?

On-premises

Which version of this solution are you currently using?

7.3
**Disclosure: My company has a business relationship with this vendor other than being a customer: Integrator, consultant
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