Configuring Correlation Rules to Auto-Create Incidents

We can help you automate the incident creation based on a QQL rule query defined in a correlation rule. To help you create correlation rules, FIM provides a Correlation Rule wizard. In the wizard, define a query to specify criteria for events you want to create incidents and a schedule to indicate when and how often you want to run the rule to create incidents for the events that matched the rule query.

Through auto correlation rules, incidents will get created when there is an event created that matches the Incident criteria.

You can access the Correlation wizard from the following pages:  

- Go to Incidents > Correlation Rules > Create Correlation Rule.

- Go to Events > All Event tab or Events > Event Review tab. Enter a search query in the search box and press Enter. Click the menu button next to search box and select Create Correlation Rule from Search Query. When you create a correlation rule, the search query provided on the page is copied to the new correlation rule.

You can enable the Service Legal Agreement(SLA). Once you enable SLA, provide SLA duration and select the timeframe from the respective drop-down list.

Important: The SLA time for the autocorrelation rule is counted post the end time of the correlation rule. 

Note: You can edit the enabled SLA. Only the reviewers for whom you enter an email ID will receive notifications. You must enter valid email IDs of the reviewers to ensure they receive the notification emails.

- Go to the Assets tab, select an asset, and from the Quick Actions menu select Create Correlation Rule to create a correlation rule for an asset. When you create a correlation rule for an asset, the agent ID of the asset is copied to the new correlation rule. Use the operators 'and/or' to customize your search query.

Note: For events with 'reputationStatus' as 'MALICIOUS', an Automated Incident will be created with the below configuration:

Disposition = Malware

Change Type = Compromise

Approval Status = Policy Violation

Start review option will be available immediately.

Creating a correlation rule using the correlation rule wizard

Provide the correlation rule name and the names or email IDs of the reviewers. The logged in user's name is listed by default as the reviewer. You can enter up to 10 reviewers. When an incident is generated using the rule that you have created, it gets assigned to the users that you enter in the Reviewers text box.

The users who you set as reviewers receive a notification in the following scenarios:

- Every time there is a user action on the rule

- Every time an incident is generated by the rule

Note: Only the reviewers for whom you enter an email ID receives notifications. You must enter valid email IDs of the reviewers to ensure they receive the notification emails.

Enter a rule query. When the rule is triggered, the events matching the rule query are picked and added to the incidents. Optionally, use the Choose from my saved searches option to select a search query. We also provide a link to fetch queries from the library that lets you choose predefined queries. See Query Library.

Image of the Coreelation Rule Details page

Note: After you upgrade the Cloud Agent to 4.1 and above, the File Path is displayed as (c:\directory\sub-directory\file.ext). If all the agents in your subscription are not upgraded to 4.1 and above, edit the existing QQL queries to add the new File Path format along with the old one.

Schedule the rule

Next, select the schedule to indicate when and how often you want to run the rule. By default, the rule will be run once. Schedule the rule by choosing a date, a start and end time. To set a recurring schedule, select Recurring Job check box. You have the option to schedule the rule to run daily between a specified time, every week, or every month on chosen days between a specified period.

Note: If you schedule the rule to recur on the 1st of every month in IST, it will occur on the 31st of the months with thirty one days when for UTC.

FIM also supports cross date scheduling. Correlation can start at 10 PM on day 1 and end at 2 am on day 2 (effective schedule of 4 hours). If the end time is less than or equal to start time, the end time is considered as the time of next day. There is no end date for the schedule. User can deactivate or delete a correlation rule to stop creating incidents for the rule.

The scheduler runs every 5 minutes to pick up new jobs. Hence, it is recommended that while creating a schedule, you choose a "Start Time" greater than 15 minutes from the current time for a job to get picked up. If you choose a Start Time less than 15 minutes, it is possible that by the time you have created the rule, the scheduler has already picked up the job. In such a case your job will be picked up in the next scheduled cycle. This means One Time rule will never run as the time set for running the rule has already passed and if it is a Recurring rule, it will run at the next schedule.

When the correlation rule is run during the scheduled time, FIM will pick up all the events that are raised during the scheduled time and that match the search query provided in the rule. All these events are then added to the newly created incident. The naming convention used for incidents is correlation rule name followed by incident creation date and time. Note that you cannot change the Trigger criteria of a correlation rule in the edit mode.

Correlation wizard showing configurations for Trigger Criteria set as Recurring.

Choose review options for the auto-created incidents

Finally, select the Change Type to indicate if you want to automate the review process for the incident or manually review the incident. For Automated review mode, select a disposition category for reporting and classification, choose the change type, mark the incident Pending, Approved, Unapproved Change or Policy Violation and provide a comment. Click Save to create the correlation rule.

Correlation wizard showing configurations for automated approval type.

When you choose the option to create a rule, FIM opens the Alert Rule wizard to help you configure the alert rule. The new alert rule name and description will be the same as the correlation rule name and description from which the alert rule is created. The search query for the alert rule will default to Incidents and a query is created with incident status open or closed and correlation rule ID. See Configuring Rule-Based Alerts for Events and Incidents.

Managing correlation rules

The Correlations Rules tab lists all the correlation rules.  The page shows details such as the Rule name with rule ID, whether the rule is currently active or deactivated, Created by.  The Quick Actions menu on the page provides you options to view, edit, delete, activate/deactivate a rule and view the incidents of a rule.


-The activate/deactivate option is available for correlation rule that has a recurring schedule.

-REVIEWER column is renamed as CREATED BY.

Quick Actions for Show Incidents

Managing Incidents

All the incidents generated for a correlation rule are listed in the All Incidents tab with type as "Automated". Note that you can not delete an incident that is generated for a correlation rule.

Manage Incident

Reviewing incidents

An incident generated for a correlation rule is available for manual review after a grace period of 10 minutes from the scheduled end time of the rule. The Start Review option on the Quick Actions menu will be available for the incident after the grace period ends.

Related Topics

Qualys Query Library


Event Insights