Choosing the right managed security service provider (MSSP) means finding a partner who supports your organization in four key areas:
- Meets your cybersecurity architecture needs
- Helps you manage security threats and vulnerabilities
- Trains your staff and manages their account security
- Streamlines incident response and management
Be sure to check out our one-minute white paper on managed security service providers (MSSP).
Criterion #1: Meeting Security Architecture Needs
A quality MSSP partner will help your organization identify and meet or exceed its security needs through rigorous architecture implementation. They’ll work with you to figure out what controls are necessary to safeguard your software and hardware from threats, then install perimeter defenses, scanners, filters, and anything else you need—and keep it all patched.
One huge consideration in this area is regulatory compliance advisory. Many organizations are subject to governmental and other rules protecting specific kinds of data. Your MSSP should help you identify any sensitive data classes that are subject to regulations, like cardholder data (CHD) for the Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security Standards (DSS) or protected health information (PHI) for the Health Information Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).
A good MSSP will work with you to deploy safeguards to meet regulatory requirements (i.e., the DSS Requirements or HIPAA Rules), then prepare for and conduct audits for full certification.
The best MSSPs will streamline the process, such as with a unified HITRUST CSF deployment.
Criterion #2: Identifying and Mitigating Risks
Critically, MSSP tools need to help your organization account for and minimize risk. That means monitoring for, identifying, and neutralizing any potential cyber incidents before they materialize.
One of the most effective approaches is managed detection and response (MDR), comprising:
- Threat detection practices, ideally automated, to identify potential security incidents
- Root cause analysis to diagnose and address core issues leading to weaknesses
- Incident response, engaged immediately, to snuff out attacks before they even start
- Ongoing regulatory compliance assurance, minimizing longer-term consequences
MDR is characterized by a dynamic, proactive approach to risk mitigation.
Depending on your needs, a more passive approach might also suffice. So long as your threat and vulnerability management accounts for all weaknesses in your system (vulnerabilities) and events or actors that could exploit them (threats), your needs may be met. A quality MSSP will provide a wide range of risk mitigation tools and strategies, along with options for customization.
Criterion #3: Optimizing Staff-Wide Cybersecurity
The best MSSPs help you ensure that all employees are willing and able to contribute to your organization’s security goals. The most direct influence MSSPs exert on this front is through designing and deploying security awareness training. All staff need to be trained and assessed on their knowledge both during onboarding and at regular intervals throughout their tenure.
For best results, MSSPs can actively gauge staff readiness with real-time tabletop exercises.
Another critical area where MSSPs optimize security across your entire staff is in identity and access management (IAM). Your MSSP partner can help design your account management strategy, like how to leverage multifactor authentication (MFA). If your organization uses a bring-your-own-device (BYOD) approach, MSSP partners can help monitor and ensure security across a wide range of devices. And, if contractors and other third parties have access to sensitive data, an MSSP can help you implement third-party risk management (TPRM).
Criterion #4: Streamlining Incident Management
Choosing the right MSSP tools and solutions doesn’t end with prevention. You should also look for ways that your partner will help you weather any attacks or other incidents that do occur.
Your MSSP should help you develop a robust incident management program, including:
- Monitoring and identification to detect incidents and set mitigation practices into action
- Immediate incident logging and analysis, referencing accumulated threat intelligence
- Investigation and diagnosis to determine the scope and appropriate responses
- Assignment of mitigation protocols, along with dynamic escalation as needed
- Complete closure and resolution, including the eradication of all residual threats
- Ongoing customer satisfaction and business continuity efforts, maximizing uptime
Even the most comprehensive cyberdefense systems, with the most advanced risk mitigation and employee awareness programs, are likely to experience attacks. Your MSSP should make attacks less likely to happen, but they should also make them less likely to succeed if they do.
RSI Security’s Managed Security Services
Ultimately, choosing the right MSSP means selecting a partner that will help you install and maintain secure systems, manage risks, safeguard your workforce, and manage incidents. But another important consideration is the extent to which an MSSP’s values align with your own.
RSI Security is one of the top managed security service providers in the US because we’re committed to serving our clients above all else. We help create freedom through discipline, installing robust and flexible protections that allow our partners to focus on what they do best.
To learn more about our managed security service provider suite, contact RSI Security today!