What Is an MSSP and Should My Business Hire One?

An MSSP is a Managed Security Service Provider. MSSPs provide comprehensive cybersecurity services to businesses. When looking into IT support options for your business, you have several alternatives. You can utilize internal IT resources, you can partner with a Managed Service Provider (MSP), or you can partner with an MSSP.  But how do you decide which will be best for your business?

MSSPs Versus MSPs

MSSPs can seem similar to MSPs; however, MSSPs have more advanced and complete cybersecurity capabilities. MSSPs typically offer a suite of services that can include things like intrusion detection and prevention, next generation firewall management, vulnerability assessments, a security operations center (SOC) and cyber incident response.

You might naturally choose an MSSP over an MSP if you work for a large enterprise or for a business that has sensitive information—such as credit card or other financial information. In today’s technological landscape, any business can benefit from working with an MSSP. That’s because the cyber threats that businesses face are constantly evolving and becoming more sophisticated, and a single breach can cause irreparable harm (e.g., reputational damage, loss of partners/clients and litigation).

What Services Does an MSSP Offer

Here is a deeper look into some of the more comprehensive services from an MSSP.

Intrusion Detection and Prevention

An MSSP can help identify and prevent attacks with a combination of technology, people, and processes. This includes things like identifying suspicious activity, investigating incidents, and taking action to prevent future attacks.  Endpoint detection and response (EDR) and security information and event management (SIEM) are vital detection and prevention tools that take IT protection well beyond classic antivirus.

Firewall Management

Firewalls are critical for keeping your network safe.  MSSPs frequently provide services that leverage next generation firewalls. Next generation firewalls stay connected and constantly adapt to changing threats.  In addition to firewall monitoring and management, MSSPs may also provide professional services to configure and deploy new firewalls.

Security Operations Center (SOC)

A 24x7x365 SOC is a vital component for all MSSP offerings.  The SOC aggregates and analyzes data from firewalls and intrusion detection tools, alerting your IT team when an indicator of compromise is found.

Vulnerability Assessments

An MSSP can also help to proactively identify vulnerabilities in your IT environment so that you can fix them before they’re exploited. A combination of automated tools and external partners are leveraged to conduct risk assessments and penetration tests as needed.

Cyber Incident Response

If you do experience a cybersecurity incident, an MSSP can help minimize the damage and get your systems back up and running quickly. They will also work with you to develop a plan to prevent future incidents.

Advantages of Working with an MSSP

If you’re still on the fence about whether or not to work with an MSSP, here are a few advantages that might help you make up your mind.

  • Increased cybersecurity: When you need the strongest digital defense possible, an MSSP is a way to go. They provide a higher level of cybersecurity than most businesses could achieve on their own.
  • Cost savings: MSSPs can often save businesses money by economies-of-scale and by having access to and training on the latest technologies. Before you invest in an MSSP, make sure to get a transparent and itemized pricing model that shows you exactly what you’re getting for your money. 
  • Improved compliance: MSSPs can help you meet various compliance regulations, such as PCI DSS, HIPAA, and GDPR. They can also help you with compliance requirements related to Cybersecurity Insurance policies.
  • Risk reduction: An MSSP can help you reduce the overall risk to your business by identifying and mitigating potential threats.
  • Increased productivity: An MSSP can take on complex tasks that would otherwise take up the time of your IT team (including the meaningful amount of effort and training necessary to stay up to date on the constantly changing cyber threat landscape).  Leveraging an MSSP frees up your resources to focus on other tasks.

How to Determine If You Need an MSSP

An MSSP can provide the advanced cybersecurity services that many businesses require. Here are a few questions you can work through to determine whether an MSSP is a good fit for you:

-Do you have in-house/internal resources to manage your cybersecurity?

-Do you have a clear and full understanding of your cyber risks? Would it make sense to offload some or all of that risk onto a team of cybersecurity experts?

-If a cyber incident occurred, would your internal IT team be able to recognize it immediately? Could your IT team respond swiftly to keep your assets protected and your operations running?

-Do you have a plan in place to respond to any cyber incident?

-Are you comfortable with your current level of cybersecurity? 

If you answered “no” to any of these questions, then your business could benefit from working with an MSSP. Even if your data isn’t extremely sensitive, cyber threats are becoming increasingly complex and your business would benefit from the advanced services of an MSSP.

Partner with Fusion Managed IT for MSSP Services

If you need help determining whether your business could benefit from an MSSP, or if you’re ready to partner with an MSSP, Fusion Managed IT can help. We are a leading provider of managed security services and our team of experts can help you develop a comprehensive cybersecurity solution for your business.

Contact us today to learn more about our services or to get started with a free consultation!

Author: James Michalak

what is an MSSP and should my business hire one

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