There are few people stretched thinner in the modern office than your average IT employee. The IT needs of businesses are expanding every year, and as such, many businesses have to pick and choose what they can afford to prioritize with their in-house IT support. Even so, IT staff is limited in what they can accomplish in a day. So how can a business patch these holes? Many are looking outside their organization and searching for extra support from an external provider. This is where managed security services can help.
As an extension of your in-house security services, a managed security service provider closes the loop on people, processes and technology. Most offer 24/7 support options that can be tailored to your industry, your specific business scale, and it can continue to grow as your security needs change. Here are a few elements you should consider as you’re shopping your MSS options.
This is a great first step when it comes to protecting your data, and you can outsource this labor easily with the help of an MSS. For data “at rest,” like patient information or sensitive customer data, encryption is an essential part of staying compliant and protecting your users’ information. Protecting your data “at rest” will be especially important this year with PCI DSS 3.2 requirements and the GDPR taking effect.
Organizations are connecting new endpoints to their network everyday thanks to the advancements of the IoT and AI. It is difficult for an IT team to ensure the security of all endpoints across the organization especially if they do not possess the right skills and expertise to manage endpoint security.
Data loss is a risk every business faces. Creating a backup of data might be enough for recovery, but you also need to protect the backup. The best practice is to encrypt any backups of sensitive data and store it on a multi-site architecture. If you’re worried your backups aren’t being stored as securely as possible, this is another a-la-carte solution that could do so much for your data security.
It’s not just about installing one or two programs and forgetting about it. A managed security service provider will be able to offer constant monitoring and instant alerts, so that you can leave your desk and still know exactly when and where a threat is happening.
Intrusion Detection and Prevention
Like an impressive security system, outsourcing some of your security to an MSS is like asking someone to housesit while you’re on vacation rather than leaving an empty house. This solution is another great addition to bridge that gap between your in-house IT and protecting your data from every threat. Most MSSP offer real-time security monitoring, management and analysis of networks and servers—probably the most important managed security service you can choose.
Real-time monitoring isn’t enough. Vulnerability scanning is another layer of protection. Trying to scan your complete IT network for weaknesses can be costly and a difficult undertaking for anyone to attempt alone. A MSSP scans your network, classifies threats, and provides steps to remediate the weaknesses. Could it be any easier?
Network Firewall and VPN
Customize your firewalls and VPNs to fit your business. Do you have a BYOD program for your employees? Are customers accessing your network daily? Working with a MSSP to find a solution that fits your needs is not only smart, but practically a requirement in today’s security environment.
When your employees have access to sensitive data, one of the smallest things you can do to better secure your information is to set up two-factor authentication. It’s especially important to put in place for remote workers, who may need to access your network from an unsecured network.
One of the most time-consuming jobs in any IT department is log management, and offloading that labor and time consumption can save you more cash than you might think. With a managed services provider, you get real-time monitoring and management available 24/7, as well as automated, audit-ready reports available whenever you need them.
Managed Security for Peace of Mind
Organizations choose to outsource their security needs for a variety of reasons, often driven by lack of in-house knowledge and manpower. Hiring experts can save time, money, and frustration while giving you peace of mind—invaluable in today’s security climate.
This post was brought to you by IBM Global Technology Services. For more content like this, visit IT Biz Advisor.
Daniel Newman is the Principal Analyst of Futurum Research and the CEO of Broadsuite Media Group. Living his life at the intersection of people and technology, Daniel works with the world’s largest technology brands exploring Digital Transformation and how it is influencing the enterprise. From Big Data to IoT to Cloud Computing, Newman makes the connections between business, people and tech that are required for companies to benefit most from their technology projects, which leads to his ideas regularly being cited in CIO.Com, CIO Review and hundreds of other sites across the world. A 5x Best Selling Author including his most recent “Building Dragons: Digital Transformation in the Experience Economy,” Daniel is also a Forbes, Entrepreneur and Huffington Post Contributor. MBA and Graduate Adjunct Professor, Daniel Newman is a Chicago Native and his speaking takes him around the world each year as he shares his vision of the role technology will play in our future.