How MSSPs Deliver a Layered Security Approach
By George Louris, Vice President of Technology, Marcum Technology
Traditional cybersecurity technologies, such as antivirus, anti-malware, and firewalls, are no longer sufficient to defend against the rise in security breaches. In today’s threat landscape, a more holistic, defense-in-depth, layered approach has become necessary.
In my previous post I discussed reasons to use a MSSP (managed security services partner). Today, I’d like to expand on that by exploring some of the ways a good MSSP can further strengthen an organization’s security posture through a layered approach.
No matter the size or complexity of your environment, or whether it’s in the cloud, on premise, or a hybrid combination, the entire infrastructure must be taken into account when determining which security measures to implement.
What is Layered Security?
Layered security involves more than just adding layers of security solutions on top of what is already there. It’s about providing comprehensive security and business continuity solutions that complement each other and protect businesses from current and future threats. But before you can develop a layered security plan, it’s important to understand the assets you are protecting, their value, and what would happen if you lost access to those assets.
A good first step is to take inventory of all IT hardware and software assets and host details across your network, including operating systems and open services. Next, categorize assets into groups or business units and assign a business value to each asset group based on its importance to the organization’s operations. Once that is completed, outline the acceptable risk for each asset. During this exercise, it’s important to consider the following:
- What is the worst thing that could happen if this IT asset was compromised or hijacked?
- What is the worst-case scenario for your organization in terms of reputation, financial losses, and overall morale?
- How long can your business survive without access to your IT systems?
- How many hours of work are you willing to lose or repeat?
- How much data do you have on critical business systems?
- How would this affect your future business?
- How often do you back up this data?
- What would happen if you lost access to your data? Your emails? Your client contacts?
Layered Security is More Important Than Ever Before
We’re surrounded by news about cybercriminals, stolen identities, and compromised Fortune 500 companies. Regardless of the size of your business, everyone is under the constant threat of attack. SMBs are especially vulnerable as they typically don’t take the threats to their IT assets seriously enough to invest in a layered security approach.
Moving to the cloud won’t magically help. It’s important to remember that cloud vendors do not protect user data. In fact, Microsoft clearly states that for all cloud deployment types:
You are responsible for protecting the security of your data and identities. Regardless of the type of deployment, the following responsibilities are always retained by you: Data, Endpoints, Account, Access management.
Source: Microsoft Shared Responsibility in the Cloud: docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/security/fundamentals/shared-responsibility
Cybercriminals are continuously changing their attack methods. As a result, a layered security approach has become more important than ever. Implementing such a strategy isn’t always simple, and it’s not one size fits all. It requires experience and expertise, which is where a good managed services provider comes in.
How a Managed Security Services Provider Can Help
Protecting against the threat landscape requires different technologies and additional resources with unique capabilities to ensure potential threats are detected and immediately addressed. Without the necessary solutions in place, these quickly evolving threats can cause catastrophic damage to a company’s reputation and financial stability.
A layered approach to security may involve technologies such as 24/7 proactive monitoring of all critical devices; patch management; firewall assessments and remediation; recurring vulnerability assessments and penetration tests; SPAM filtering; web content filtering; dark web monitoring; multifactor authentication; advanced managed security endpoint detection and response; security awareness training; business continuity and disaster recovery planning and implementation; and more.
Utilizing a managed security services provider (MSSP) helps remove the burden of having sufficient technical resources with the required security expertise on staff. An outside expert service provider can not only plan and implement a layered security approach but also monitor, detect, and respond to security incidents as they occur. This approach also helps organizations minimize the possibility of negative events like breaches, data loss, and other incidents.
No one can guarantee 100% protection against cyberattacks, but rapid detection and response are critical. That’s where Marcum Technology, a Managed Security Services Provider (MSSP), comes in. Marcum’s Managed Cybersecurity Services not only alert you to network security concerns, but our MSSP team also works with you to remediate and mitigate risks, conduct due diligence, and satisfy legal or audit requirements.
Isn’t it time to consider a different, more holistic approach to protecting your organization against cyberattacks? For more information, contact [email protected].