Cybersecurity is a complex challenge that only appears to be getting worse. In fact, researcher Cybersecurity Ventures predicts that there will be a cyberattack every 11 seconds in 2021. This is due to current and emerging technologies that are broadening the risks organizations face. Add to that the pressures the recent pandemic has placed on businesses as they battle increasing cyberattacks with stretched-thin IT resources.
While large corporations benefit from having the experience and resources to tackle these threats, SMBs often lack both, making it difficult for them to manage risks or to implement effective and affordable cybersecurity strategies. Unfortunately, cybercriminals know this, making SMBs a primary target. That’s why partnering with a managed service provider is quickly becoming a viable option for SMBs who realize that the task of protecting their systems and data is too large for them to do alone.
But for MSPs focused on offering cybersecurity services to the SMB market, success depends on establishing a best-practice approach. In doing so, they should focus on a number of key areas.
Many SMBs learn about cyberattacks from the high-profile cybersecurity breaches that make headlines and strike fear. While this can be a motivating factor to implement increased security measures, it is important for an MSP partner to provide a balanced education. MSPs should help SMBs focus on the issues most relevant to them, as well as educate them on which solutions will maximize their protection. This is key to building trust in an outsourced supplier.
While many small and medium-size businesses may already utilize MSPs for a variety of key IT infrastructure elements, a recent study found that 91% of SMBs would consider using or moving to a new MSP if it offered the “right” cybersecurity solution. In fact, the same study showed that 86% of SMBs place cybersecurity within the top five priorities for their organization, and 6 in 10 would invest more in cybersecurity because it reduces risk for their organization. Therefore, it is important for MSPs to ensure that they are offering the services and value that SMBs are looking for.
When an SMB does turn to an MSP for cybersecurity services, the changes needed to properly secure that business may be significant—and may even require a cultural shift. It is crucial, then, that the MSP gets the stakeholders to understand and commit to the changes needed when it comes to new security policies, procedures, and technologies being implemented. Any push-back or resistance to change risks undermining efforts to improve security. Therefore, the MSP should define a security vision for the client that will be effective both now and in the future.