[SECURITY |4 MIN READ] Customers turn to MSPs for several critical IT needs but keeping their digital infrastructure and valuable information safe from cybercriminals is paramount.
As a managed services provider (MSP), you’re tasked with handling a full spectrum of digital tasks for your customers. From managing cloud migrations and tracking software updates to optimizing network performance and streamlining Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policies, your customers turn to you to support their growth goals and keep their IT infrastructure functioning properly.
However, one of the most critical managed services you can provide is cybersecurity. For any business—but small and mid-sized companies especially—digital threats pose a pronounced risk to ongoing operations and business success. Whether your customers face brute force attacks or more subtle social engineering such as phishing and whaling, cybercriminals have the potential to cause major disruptions to all kinds of organizations.
The stakes of mismanaging or ignoring cybersecurity are high. For more modest businesses, the consequences can be truly debilitating. Research shows that it can cost a small business well over $100,000 just to start managing the immediate effects of a cyberattack. What’s more, 60% of small and mid-sized companies that suffer a serious cyberattack go out of business within six months.
With these numbers in mind, it’s clear why businesses should invest in managed cybersecurity. While some might believe managed cybersecurity is just another one of the many services MSPs offer, it can make the difference between success or failure for companies that are targeted by cybercriminals. And to ensure you can effectively protect your customers’ IT infrastructure, it’s imperative you have the tools necessary to secure their network and safeguard their digital assets.
What is cybersecurity and managed cybersecurity?
Broadly speaking, cybersecurity is the practice of defending IT infrastructure and valuable digital assets from bad actors—both external and internal. Externally, cybercriminals might attempt to force entry to client networks through brute force attacks. However, they can use less obvious methods—such as with phishing attacks designed to get employees to click on seemingly innocuous email links, or whaling attacks specifically crafted to fool top-level executives into unwittingly granting cybercriminals network access.
Unfortunately, internal bad actors can cause just as much harm—if not more. Disgruntled employees might attempt to cause businesses serious damage, while other workers with good intentions might accidentally open up internal vulnerabilities—allowing cybercriminals an opportunity to exploit them. For example, successful phishing attacks can give bad actors the information they need to pose as someone with appropriate access to a network, allowing them to cause problems without anyone immediately noticing.
Enterprise cybersecurity strategies are designed to anticipate these threats, prepare for them, and mitigate whatever damage they might cause by detecting them quickly. However, while large corporations might have the resources to bring comprehensive cybersecurity operations in-house, the same can’t be said for small and mid-sized businesses with more limited budgets. But these more modest operations can’t afford to go without a cybersecurity practice of their own—unless they want cybercriminals to start targeting businesses that are easier to infiltrate than larger competitors.
That’s where managed cybersecurity comes in. With an MSP providing managed cybersecurity, businesses can protect themselves against bad actors regardless of their size or the scope of their internal IT expertise. Managed cybersecurity allows small and mid-sized businesses to protect their operations just as effectively as larger competitors, preventing them from becoming easy targets for cybercriminals.
Why should cybersecurity be properly managed?
To maintain a competitive edge in increasingly crowded market verticals, businesses need to leverage the most advanced technology available. This means cloud computing artificial intelligence, machine learning, and preparing for network changes such as 5G. While these technologies are available for small and mid-sized businesses to use at scale, they can present unwieldy challenges when it comes to securing IT infrastructure and protecting valuable digital assets from cybercriminals.
For example, a growing number of businesses are moving their operations onto the cloud. While cloud computing offers teams added flexibility and allows businesses to use only the resources they need—scaling up and down as necessary—it also comes with its fair share of cybersecurity challenges. Information that’s stored and managed in the cloud still needs to be properly secured through sophisticated data protection and encryption strategies—otherwise, businesses risk exposure to cybercriminals.
Additionally, network updates such as 5G pose specific threats small and mid-sized businesses might have a difficult time preparing for on their own. Because 5G will change the way software updates, the number of devices connected to networks, and the ease with which they can remotely access it, bad actors will have an easier time penetrating poorly protected IT infrastructure.
With properly managed cybersecurity, businesses can rely on expert advice and trained IT professionals to close vulnerabilities caused by new technology. This will empower small and mid-sized firms to leverage the same tools as larger competitors without having to expose themselves to potentially debilitating cyberattacks.
MSPs managing their customers’ enterprise cybersecurity policies need to have the best tools at their disposal to manage increasingly sophisticated digital threats without impeding critical workflows. For example, centralized password management platforms can keep employee credentials safe while enforcing effective cybersecurity strategy.
With SolarWinds® Passportal, MSPs can leverage these capabilities to their customers’ advantage. Built with MSPs in mind, Passportal offers the key features needed to provide high-quality managed cybersecurity services to customers with a range of needs. Easy password resets, cloud-based secure storage, and granular access control make Passportal an unmatched password management tool for cybersecurity-focused MSPs.
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