There are many good reasons for which companies seek out the help of a managed security services provider. Security is a huge issue for all modern companies and it must be considered carefully. One of the inherent problems of cybersecurity is that it requires people who are smarter and more educated than the average hacker. When you are outsourcing your cybersecurity, that means finding a company that employs top-tier people and conducts its business like true professionals. Here are some tips that will help you find and evaluate a managed security services provider.
The Initial Search
We will assume that you are starting from zero with no idea of which MSSP you want to hire. You can start by compiling a list of all the MSSP options that you can find. Of course, you can pre-filter that list by immediately ruling out those that seem low-quality. A little time with a search engine can yield plenty of results here, but there is one problem: There are probably thousands of IT companies in the US alone.
One way to narrow down the search is to look for companies that are primarily based in your area. If their business is centered near your area, you are likely to be a higher-priority customer. You can also filter out some bad results by looking for companies that specialize in your particular industry. Security needs do vary according to the industry involved, so it pays to get someone with experience playing in your field. Overall, the initial search is the hardest part, but you can use a process of elimination to gradually find the right one.
Every candidate on your list should be checked out in regards to customer reviews and company history in general. A quick google search will probably tell you if that company is known to have been involved in anything disreputable, or if they have been found guilty of negligence to a serious degree. Either way, you should read as many reviews as possible. Be aware that not all reviews are honest, since some people are paid to write them. This goes both ways: They might pay for a good review to boost themselves, or pay for bad reviews to hurt a rival. Thus, you should look for overall trends instead of concentrating on individual reports.
Step 1: Verify Their Credentials
The first thing you need to ask about is certifications and credentials. Both companies and individual techs will need to be certified for cybersecurity work. All IT professionals have at least some knowledge of cybersecurity, but you want people who specialize in that area. Otherwise, you will get mediocre security people and mediocre results.
Here is the thing: Any cybersecurity certification can be checked with relative ease. You just need to find the name of the organization that issued the cert. Once you know that, it is not hard to do a little homework on that organization. Basically, you want to find out if that organization really is a respected authority in the field of cybersecurity.
Finally, you will want to verify that the persons/organizations in question are actually certified. In many cases, this information is readily available on the issuing organization’s website, but it seldom takes more than an email or a phone call to verify a certification.
Ask About A Service-Level Agreement
Service-level agreements are common for just about any managed IT plan, and they are particularly important when talking about security. The exact terms vary, but these agreements guarantee certain results from the MSSP, and provides liability should they fail to meet those obligations. In simpler terms, this is just the company guaranteeing its work, and that is a good thing. Any company that doesn’t offer some sort of guarantee should be avoided.
Test The Waters
When you make the initial call to the MSSP that you are thinking about hiring, you should get someone with a little bit of IT knowledge to make the call. In this way, they can test the knowledge of the MSSP representative. This does not need to involve any formal test, as it can be done by simply asking the right questions. The idea is just to get them talking about technical matters and make sure that they know the subject matter well enough. This is also a good time to talk about the services that the company offers, so that you can evaluate whether or not they are covering all the necessary bases.
A good MSSP should provide things like advanced firewalls, network encryption, secure data storage, efficient and secure backup/restore procedures, disaster recovery planning, network and/or file monitoring services, periodic testing and network analysis. You will have to decide how much security your company really needs, and which measures are fully necessary for you. At this point, though, you are just trying to figure out which companies offer the best terms and the most professional conduct.
Good Communication Is Key
After the initial point of contact, you need to make sure that the MSSP company is responsive and serious about doing business. It is essential to have good communication with your MSSP, because that is what makes problem resolution possible. There are bound to be small issues, at the very least, so you need to make sure that those lines of communication are open at all times. A company that doesn’t keep you informed or which doesn’t respond quickly should be disqualified.
In the end, it shouldn’t be that hard to find a good managed security services provider. After all, you have already come to the right place. PCH Technologies offers high-quality and affordable MSSP services, and we are always ready to help you improve your security situation. With so many cybersecurity dangers out there, it pays to stay ready for anything, and we can help you to do just that. If you would like to know more, call PCH Technologies at (844) 754-7500.
Our Florida Office
As of 2022, PCH Technologies has opened up a new location in Fort Lauderdale, FL in order to serve the South Florida Market. This expansion into the South Florida market aligns strategically with our plans to continue to grow a national presence as a managed service provider (MSP).