The Managed Security Services market is expanding at a healthy rate due to the constantly evolving threats out there today. According to Transparency Market Research, the “Managed Security Services Market is expected to grow from 9.3 Billion in 2012 to 24.1 Billion in 2019.”
Managed security services and the providers that supply them have matured significantly over the past decade. Traditional managed security services providers (MSSP) once were limited to managed firewall and VPN services. However, over the past 5 years the demand for other security services has increased significantly. The growth of these services is partly due to the sharp escalation in regulatory requirements because of the increase in security breach incidents. To combat these threats and vulnerabilities, MSSPs offer a wide variety of services, including: firewall, content filtering, anti-virus, security monitoring, incident response, vulnerability scans, SIEM, Intrusion detection and much more.
When you are considering the economic benefit of using a MSSP for security functions, IT decision makers need to understand the costs associated with carrying out those security tasks in-house. Perhaps the most import way to understand the economic value of managed security functions versus the full cost of IT security operations in-house, is to make an apples-to-apples comparison.
Here are some in-house costs that should be considered when organizations are making the ROI case for in-house security operations:
Internal Security Staff
For a typical organization, security monitoring and management will require at least 3 full-time employees. The average US base salary for an IT security administrator is $80,000, according to salary.com. You are already talking about $240,000 in direct costs. However, that is only a piece of the puzzle. You also have to consider taxes, benefits, training, office space, technology support, etc. This alone will bump up your direct costs $100,000 or more. The last factor you must consider with this equation is 24/7/365 coverage. Are those 3 employees enough to cover 24/7/365 security operations? Sometimes, just being able to save on internal staffing costs is the biggest reason to justify moving to a MSSP.
So, you have your staff, now you need your security tools. While security tools on the market are all priced differently across the board, it is paramount that you are using tools that are up-to-date, have deep integrations, and have wide functionality. Within budget, you may not always get the product with the right capabilities for your organization. A key advantage to working with a MSSP is that they are already utilizing the most up-to-date security tools on the market. Additionally, MSSPs have already invested in SOC (security operations center) environments. This alleviates the need for customers to make investments in a data center or monitoring facilities.
MSSPs are reliable, responsive and cost-effective assets to deploy and improve certain controls required for compliance mandates. MSSPs stay current on mandates and compliance; often even providing more knowledge of those than internal staff could. They know exactly what attack responses to take and can supply activity logs, reporting, and even audit logs.
While cost is a driving factor to go with a MSSP, it is important to recognize that there are many other benefits to managed security functions. Some of the top reasons organizations are moving to a MSSP is:
- Improved quality of protection
- Gain 24/7 coverage
- Greater competency
With a MSSP you have access to certified engineers, market and industry experience, responsive customer service, and deep security expertise. Some of these qualities are just simply unattainable when it comes to security functions in-house. Working with a MSSP can reap tangible benefits by simply keeping the organizations protected and operating with greater effectiveness.
As IT budgets continue to be under pressure and companies need to maximize the value of all their investments, small and large organizations are moving toward a managed security services provider framework to fulfill a wide variety of functions. Not all MSSPs are the same nor offer all the same services in variety or depth. Do your research and ask the tough questions when talking to a MSSP. Finding the right level of service for your needs will easily make the ROI case for managed security services.
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