What is a MSSP (Managed Security Service Provider)? - NETSERVE365

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What is a MSSP?
July 13, 2017
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What is a MSSP (Managed Security Service Provider)?

Businesses today are bombarded by the evolving cyber threat landscape. Security services are becoming a must-have and it is causing organizations to seek out trusted security partners to aide with unmanageable vulnerabilities. This is where a Managed Security Services Provider, also known as MSSP, steps in.

The huge growth in the security services industry has persuaded MSPs to add the extra “S” into their title to exemplify the legitimacy of their security services to clients. Many organizations have trouble managing their security posture due to lack of know-how, budget, or in-house expertise. The reality is that most organizations can’t afford, financially and reputationally, the aftermath of a data breach. Because of this, it is important to know your options when it comes to properly securing your IT environments. In this article, you will learn how a fully equipped MSSP can help your organization battle current and future security threats and what efforts they make to keep your organization secure.

MSSP’s First line of defense: Knowledge

To be able to properly secure your environments, you need an expert team that knows how to quickly respond to actionable data. This is a MSSP’s first line of defense: expert knowledge. Most organizations do not know what they would do in the wake of a cyber-attack. They may not have security professionals, or the budget, on their teams to make proper security decisions. The gap between cyber-security knowledge leaves businesses vulnerable to cyberthreats because they don’t understand how threats are evolving, what types of threats linger, and most importantly how to overcome them.

A MSSP is backed by not only top-notch tools, they have a fully staffed operations center with extensive knowledge and a hold on cyber-security trends that focuses on the effectiveness of your security posture. Their staff is certified in the latest technologies, and complete training on a regular basis. With ransomware on the rise and vulnerabilities ever-changing, a lack of support and education throughout an organization will leave their systems, and employees, dangerously vulnerable.

Holistic Approach to Security

A business needs a one-stop-shop to holistic security services because juggling multiple vendors is difficult and messy. When a security incident does occur, scrambling to find information on the breach and what steps you need to take to remediate will be time consuming with multiple vendors. When a security incident happens, it spreads quickly. You cannot take your eyes off the ball. A holistic approach seeks to integrate all the elements designed to safeguard an organization as one interconnected system. The ultimate purpose: continuous protection across all attack surfaces – physical, software, network, and human exposure. A MSSP should have services that cover all these bases. And if they don’t, I would be looking for a new security partner.

Robust Security Offering

A MSSP’s first defense is their knowledge, their second defense is what they can do with that knowledge in a holistic and robust security offering. Security requires more than firewalls, patch updates, and anti-virus protection these days. While these are still important technologies, security has become much more multifaceted and complex. A MSSP will be able to offer you a wide variety of services that will blend seamlessly together to create a first, second, and third layer of defense to combat cyber-criminals.

A MSSP will have SIEM (security information and event management) tools in place that can provide true security visibility and monitoring, as well as threat intelligence with actionable data. Their 24/7/365 operations center will monitor your systems, respond to alerts, and supply incident response quickly, day and night. On top of a robust SIEM service, businesses need functions such as asset discovery, vulnerability assessments, intrusion detection, intrusion prevention, log management, threat intelligence and behavioral monitoring. A few other important services that MSSPs offer are:

  • Monitoring and management of firewalls, intrusion detection, intrusion prevention, security gateways, etc.
  • Security analysis and reporting of events from infrastructure logs
  • Reporting associated with devices and incident response
  • Vulnerability scanning of networks, servers, databases and applications
  • SIEM technologies
  • Compliance reporting and management
  • Patch Management
  • Data Risk Intelligence

Data Backup

Security incidents will happen and when they do, how do businesses access their data? Paying the ransom for data isn’t an option anymore. Not only does paying the ransom enable cyber criminals, you don’t always get your data back. In the most recent Petya attack, the virus was disguised by asking for ransom, but there was initially no intention to ever giving the data back. Because of the high risk of data loss, data backup and disaster recovery services are a critical must. A MSSP should offer these services in a redundant and secure, offsite data center where you can easily access your data at any time and as quickly as possible. Data backup and disaster recovery services will ensure that your data is always protected and you are experiencing as little downtime as possible.

24/7 Support

With today’s shortage in cyber security professionals, it is important that you are leveraging the knowledge and expertise of a security partner’s operations center. What happens when the always-on business doesn’t have support for security incidents in the middle of the night or on the weekends? A MSSP can offer insightful support at all hours of the day, even on the weekends and holidays. The security professionals at a MSSP are always monitoring for incidents, responding to alerts and remediating incidents as soon as they happen. If you don’t have 24/7 support now, you are allowing yourself to be dangerously vulnerable to all kinds of threats. You might work 8-5, but cyber-criminals don’t have a work schedule.

Staying as secure as possible needs to be the goal of every business, big or small, from today and here on out. The threat landscape isn’t slowing down, only speeding up. Take action today and contact a MSSP for your free consultation.

 

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