Business security needs can be a complex issue to tackle. Particularly for nontechnology-oriented businesses, the day-to-day burdens of cyber security, firewall management, malware avoidance, customer data security, intrusion detection, and more can be overwhelming or impossible. Many companies turn to a managed security service provider in order to ensure that these issues are addressed by skilled professionals.
Why managed security services are used
The basic principle behind the managed security service provider (MSSP) industry is not unlike that of outsourcing any complex element of business. The crucial difference is that most typical outsourcing doesn’t concern highly confidential content, or only minimally with strong defensive practices in place. An MSSP is almost entirely composed of highly confidential, sensitive, restricted, or simply private information.
What a managed security service provider should do
There is a myriad of services offered through an MSSP. As a result, it is not uncommon for companies to end up paying for services that do not apply to them or that are unnecessary for their purposes. There are four key utilities that are relevant to nearly every company looking to improve their cyber security.
- Managed backups. The foundation of keeping data private is keeping data. Managed backups take the chore off the plate of busy executives and increase data security by ensuring that customer data is always backed up and protected.
- Monitoring services. Network and IT infrastructure, particularly when put into place over time, tend to form a less-than-solid web of protection and intrusion prevention. What an MSSP’s monitoring service does is view, check, update, and analyze every aspect of the business’s cyber presence, from ports to applications and databases.
- Managed firewall and unified threat management. Firewalls are another complicated area of cyber security. Constant updates, threats, intrusion detection, and the resulting requisite actions to prevent future issues all need to be performed, not simply regularly, but in quick response to specific issues, day or night. An MSSP will ensure that these tasks are completed as soon as they become necessary, round the clock.
- Business continuity. As employees come and go, it can be easy to lose track of who set up which system, what the relevant details are, and what the parameters of their use might be. An MSSP may use cloud infrastructure to keep pace with your company’s development and needs to ensure uninterrupted progress and growth.
Other services may apply
Beyond the four essential services, there are other, more specialized functions an MSSP may offer. While most are recommended, they are not applicable for every industry or field. It’s important to discuss your business’s specific needs with a professional prior to engaging an MSSP.
- Disaster recovery. In the case of a natural disaster or service failure, this ensures that business will continue to operate.
- Load balancing. This service allows a system to smoothly shift between wide fluctuations in traffic to websites or databases.
- Clustering. Clustering is a method of applying scalability with zero downtime.
- Managed colocation.
- Managed cloud.
- Managed dedicated servers.