Managed security service providers, or MSSPs, are becoming an increasingly common part of modern network security for businesses. As the number and complexity of the cyber threats businesses face increase, the need for dedicated cybersecurity experts to manage security likewise increase. A half-hearted cybersecurity strategy that lacks expert insight is doomed to failure.
However, simply having an MSSP isn’t enough. It’s important to meet with your MSSP regularly to discuss your company’s network security architecture. If you haven’t met with your MSSP in the last few months, you should probably arrange a meeting ASAP. If you don’t have a managed security service provider, it may be time to find one.
Why should you meet with your MSSP on a regular basis? Here are a few reasons to meet with your managed security team:
1) To Review How the MSSP is Protecting Your Business
Modern cyber threats are continuously evolving, with new threat types and attack strategies constantly being spawned to thwart your defenses. Because of this, the methods used to protect your business need to be continuously adapted to match ever-changing threats.
Meeting with your security service provider to occasionally review the methods they’re using to protect your business is important to ensure that they’re keeping up with the latest threats instead of treating your cybersecurity architecture like it’s a “one-and-done” solution.
Holding regular meetings with your MSSP demonstrates that you have an active interest in their activities, which helps inspire them to be diligent. In fact, top-tier managed security teams will try to reach out to you to arrange these meetings when possible.
It may help to prepare a few key questions for your MSSP prior to meeting with them.
2) To Establish the ROI for Their Security Services
Establishing the return on investment (ROI) for an MSSP’s services can be difficult. After all, how do you prove you’re getting your money’s worth when the evidence is a lack of breaches? However, your security service provider can provide data that helps establish the return on investment for their services—especially if you’re using a co-managed security information and event management (SIEM) service.
The data logged in the SIEM solution can be used to showcase the kinds of attacks your organization has faced, where those attacks came from, and how they were contained. By organizing this data into a report, your MSSP can show specific incidents where their services helped to prevent or mitigate a network security breach.
This can be incredibly useful for showcasing the ROI for using the MSSP’s services to your organization’s board (or other decision makers), making it easier to justify your cybersecurity expenditures.
3) To Raise Cybersecurity Awareness and Arrange Training
Even with a top-notch MSSP working to improve your network security, the employees in your organization need to be aware of cybersecurity issues and risks. Some organizations simply assume that their security service provider will handle everything for them and that there is nothing for their employees to do after hiring one—this is grossly incorrect. Maintaining strong network security is a collaborative effort, and it only takes one person being careless to cause a data breach.
So, it’s important to arrange cybersecurity awareness training for your employees to catch them up on the latest threats and protection strategies. This training is easier to schedule when you’re in regular contact with your MSSP.
When setting up a cybersecurity awareness training program, be sure to:
- Define what your goals are (note: set specific goals with measurable metrics for best results);
- Assess your audience (check for their general level of cybersecurity knowledge and specific gaps between what they know and what they need to know);
- Develop a security education, training, and awareness program based on your employees’ needs;
- Create a plan for distributing the training program’s contents (emails, online training software, in-person meetings, etc.); and
- Establish a means of tracking employee progress towards cybersecurity awareness goals (such as testing employee knowledge or setting up mock attacks meant to simulate situations employees have trained for).
Raising overall cybersecurity awareness can be an effective means of closing one of the biggest network security gaps in any organization. Namely, the organization’s employees.
4) To Stay “In the Loop” Regarding Your Network Security
One of the biggest reasons to periodically meet with your managed security service provider is to stay in the proverbial loop regarding security events affecting your company. Without regular updates, it’s easy to forget about your company’s network security needs, which may mean falling behind on critical changes. By meeting with your MSSP, you can get an update on crucial issues that need fixing and even collaborate on implementing fixes.
Never underestimate the importance of being “in the know” when it comes to your company’s network security.
If you don’t already have an MSSP to meet with, now is the perfect time to start looking for some managed security services. After all, if you wait until after an attack to meet with someone, that will only hurt your business and put it at risk.
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