Before opting MSSPs, IT and security teams should plan around which functions are to be outsourced and determine the budget and processes required for the partnership.

FREMONT, CA: Third-party providers deliver managed security services to oversee and administer a firm’s security operations. Managed security service providers (MSSPs) run services either in-house or remotely through the cloud. MSSPs offer extensive security services, from setting up infrastructure through security management or incident response. Some managed security service providers offer full outsourcing of an enterprise’s information security program. Organizations choose to work with MSSPs for several reasons. In other cases, enterprises will hire managed security service providers to perform security audits or respond to and evaluate incidents.

The advantage of managed security services is the security expertise and staffing they offer. The potential for MSSPs to manage security operations from an off-site location enables enterprises to run the business as usual with minimal intrusion due to security efforts. In contrast, the MSSP interface manages a constant line of communication and easy reporting to the business. MSSPs make sure that enterprise IT is always up-to-date with the status of security hurdles, audits, and maintenance, allowing the hiring firm to focus on security governance rather than administrative tasks.

Several security services are being offered by MSSPs today, from full outsourcing of security programs to specialized services that focus on a particular component of the enterprise’s security including, threat monitoring, data protection, regulatory compliance, management of network security tools, or incident response and forensics. By outsourcing security, firms can often realize cost savings by avoiding the need to maintain a staffed, full-time, on-site IT security department. Many firms also turn to MSSPs for faster implementation times and enhanced time-to-value on security investments.

Despite a growing awareness of the requirement for proactive security measures, many firms continue to put off deploying sound security initiatives until they’ve suffered a loss as an outcome of a data breach. The number of cyber threats is rising, and enterprises must prioritize IT security as a result. Whether an enterprise lacks security program maturity or merely wants to widen its security potentials, managed security service providers are a valuable option.