Palo Alto Networks looks to stimulate exchange of SOAR automation ideas with Cortex XSOAR Marketplace

There is a way for marketplace participants to monetize their submissions, but that’s not the primary function of this marketplace.

The Cortex XSOAR Marketplace

Today, Palo Alto Networks is announcing the Cortex XSOAR Marketplace, around their Cortex XSOAR, security orchestration, automation, and response platform. The marketplace, which will make available validated content packs from vendors, channel partners and customers, is designed principally to foster the exchange of ideas around the XSOAR platform, with automation being a principal focus.

“This was driven by customer feedback,” said Rishi Bhargava, VP, Product Strategy at Palo Alto Networks. “XSOAR has been getting amazing adoption across our customer base, and the first questions that customers typically ask in their deployments are: what are customers automating? what use cases are they using; and how they implementing them.”

Originally, Palo Alto conceived of this project as simply a place where customers could find out information around these kinds of issues, and share best practices.

“The original idea was to have a customer exchange which would be a place for customer to exchange their best practices, playbooks and use cases,” Bhargava said. “That was what drove this and that was what we originally started to build. Partners and other vendors also wanted to be able to share best practices on our front, however, and  that’s how other partners and vendors got involved with this.”

Bhargava stressed that the primary objective of the marketplace is not to provide ways  for developers to monetize SOAR-related solutions.

“The primary goal of the marketplace is not to be like AWS, but to exchange things that people have developed,” he stated. “We want it to encourage more automation through the collaboration and sharing. Monetizing these solutions is a part of it, through paid content pack solutions, but it is a secondary aspect of it. It’s not monetize first. It’s to provide an easier way to share, exchange and consume ideas.”

At the launch of the marketplace, content packs will be available from Palo Alto networks partners Code42, Google Chronicle, Illusive Networks, Recorded Future, RiskIQ, SafeBreach, Sixgill, Tufin and Wipro. Palo Alto Networks expects to see more solutions added by three types of organizations

“One is technology vendors who make other security products, so these would be co-opetitive relationships,” Bhargava said. “The second group is system integrators, who publish playbooks and best practices with the goal of delivering services. The third group is customers.”

The solutions themselves fall into two categories of validation – although both have a rigorous validation process.

“We want quality,” Bhargava said. “Level One integrations are where everything needs to go through a security review, and things like vulnerability testing to take sure the integration is safe. Level Two is the Certified Level – a more rigorous process of meeting integration standard, in which we try to get to the same level as if it was developed by us.”

Out of the gate, all the turnkey content packs are single vendor solutions, but the expectation is that they will progress beyond that.

“They are designed right now to be single vendor, but the playbooks could use other vendor products as well,” Bhargava noted. “Our intent is to encourage cross vendor collaboration.”

Concurrent with the Cortex XSOAR Marketplace launch, Palo Alto Networks is sponsoring what they are terming the industry’s first SOAR hackathon. Automation Rising 2020 is a virtual competition developing

innovative new automated orchestration playbooks for the Cortex XSOAR Marketplace with $80,000 in cash and other prizes. The competition starts today, August 4 and runs through September 29.