Companies looking to augment their information technology (IT) and cybersecurity architecture can often optimize their security ROI by outsourcing advisory, implementation, execution, or other elements. Working with a managed security services provider (MSSP) can maximize defense and streamline compliance and other management suites. However, your organization should evaluate the benefits of IT outsourcing against the associated costs before proceeding.
Outsourcing IT Security Pros and Cons: A Cost-Benefit Analysis
Should you outsource your cybersecurity or broader IT systems? The answer depends on various factors, such as the size and nature of your business and applicable laws or regulations. When deciding whether or not you should outsource critical IT and security infrastructure, you should consider:
- The benefits of IT outsourcing, along with how to get the most out of your MSSP.
- All the potential costs of outsourcing IT services, along with how to minimize them.
Whether your organization chooses to outsource responsibilities and execution to an MSSP or not, RSI Security’s expertise can help your organization rethink the processes and technologies comprising its cybersecurity infrastructure.
The Biggest Benefits of IT Outsourcing (And How to Maximize Them)
The most critical pros of IT outsourcing are the advanced cyberdefense functionalities it makes possible or facilitates. Representative examples of benefit factors to consider, for example, are:
- Robust architecture implementation – Outsourcing your IT and security to an MSSP can give your company access to powerful and sophisticated enterprise tools and systems that it might not be able to afford, implement, or manage otherwise. For example, dedicated cloud security suites can provide optimal protection for some of the most risk-prone endpoints and networks.
- Comprehensive risk management – Beyond initial assessment and reporting on risks, companies also need to address any identified threats or vulnerabilities. Two outsourced solutions can help you minimize risks and maximize security while keeping costs down:
- Streamlined regulatory compliance – Outsourced IT and security services are one of the best ways to address requirements for various regulatory frameworks. The industry you work in may determine your complete compliance burden (HIPAA, CMMC, etc.). However, you also may need to consider things like your payment infrastructure (PCI-DSS), your location (NYDFS), or the location of your clientele (EU GDPR, CCPA).
- MSSPs can facilitate all compliance needs, especially through a streamlined framework like the HITRUST CSF.
Implementing any of the tools or programs mentioned above offers optimal ROI, since most are significantly more affordable when outsourced than handled fully internally.
Potential Costs of IT Outsourcing (And How to Minimize Them)
Although outsourcing to an MSSP will likely reduce overall expenses, there are also cons of IT outsourcing related to the following cost factors (with steps organizations can take to minimize them are detailed below each):
- Overall managerial oversight – Many companies do not start up with a C-suite position dedicated to cybersecurity. However, as security needs scale upward and you outsource more functionalities, you may need to hire a chief information security officer (CISO) to manage all of them. Recruiting, onboarding, and retaining top talent can be expensive.
- However, outsourcing these oversight responsibilities via virtual CISO (vCISO) services can mitigate all other costs of IT outsourcing by drastically minimizing your management spend. Virtual CISO services can be contracted “a la carte” to fit your organization’s needs.
- Staff Training and awareness – Another potential downside of IT and security outsourcing is the ongoing cost and difficulty associated with onboarding and integrating any outsourced tools and solutions. All staff require training for software implementations or must be aware of their roles and responsibilities relative to new third parties working alongside them, remotely or in person. Training can become burdensome for all parties.
- Companies may find that a unified approach to IT training and awareness minimizes costs, with all classes and literature distributed through a centralized hub.
- Compounding third-party risks – As companies outsource IT and security systems to SaaS providers and other strategic partners, one insidious consequence is that they can open themselves up to new risks across all businesses. For example, companies must now monitor identity and access across third-party personnel. Also, there may be new compliance costs, as in HIPAA-eligibility via relationships with a covered entity.
- Internal or external third-party risk management (TPRM) minimizes these costs.
All of these factors depend heavily on your company’s current security needs and capabilities, along with any new risks related to the growth and diversification of your IT environment.
Rethink Outsourcing Information Security With RSI Security
As your company scales upward, so will your IT and cybersecurity needs. If you’re not already there yet, you may eventually reach a point where the benefits of IT outsourcing outweigh the costs.
RSI Security’s team of experts can assist with all the elements of your IT and cybersecurity development, whether in an advisory role or directly implementing or managing systems.
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