Managed services providers (MSPs) face a growing number of challenges as they try to keep up with evolving business practices, changing technology, and the sophisticated nature of modern cybersecurity threats. Simply put, MSPs grapple with the same security challenges that every business today must face—but they have the added responsibility of safeguarding the sensitive data of their customers.
Their brand reputation and customer loyalty depends on their ability to protect customer data from a range of advanced cyberthreats, which is why they should rely on the best tools possible to help support and maintain security. This article will discuss some of the many security challenges service providers face today, as well as highlight key MSP tools that can help them overcome these hurdles.
The security challenges faced by MSPs
We should start by acknowledging that cybercrime continues to rise, and thus cybersecurity measures must increase in response. As reported by the Ninth Annual Cost of Cybercrime Study conducted by Accenture and the Ponemon Institute, the average cost of cybercrime for an organization increased to $13 million last year. The average number of security breaches rose similarly, climbing a concerning 11%. From ransomware to distributed denial of service attacks (DDoS), criminals have found increasingly destructive ways to harm organizations of all shapes and sizes. Particularly for small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), even a single well-targeted cyberattack can be debilitating.
This means MSPs must be more alert and proactive than ever in addressing these threats. Customers trust their MSPs to help protect them via the latest cybersecurity measures, and they must be able to deliver these high-level services or risk losing their business. Whether that means helping customers stay compliant with new regulations or backing up data, MSPs have more on their plate cybersecurity-wise than ever before.
MSPs also deal with a variety of additional factors that complicate their cybersecurity duties. For one, the rise of remote work has created new vulnerabilities that bad actors may exploit. MSPs face the growing challenge of providing efficient and comprehensive support while still keeping customer data safe. To avoid the security pitfalls of remote access and remote work, MSPs must employ tools with robust security built in from the ground up.
Another compounding factor is the ongoing cybersecurity skills shortage. In an era of increased cyberthreats, it’s incredibly unfortunate the industry is facing such a significant talent shortage. Unfilled global IT security skills positions have recently topped a whopping four million, with nearly 65% of surveyed organizations reporting a shortage of cybersecurity staff. For MSPs, being stretched thin for cybersecurity resources will certainly put a strain on the services they can offer—and will require them to find new ways to rise to the occasion. Faced with such shortages, it’s more important than ever for MSPs to have the powerful tools they need to take full advantage of their resources to serve their customers.
MSP software to help you stay secure
The following tools were selected because they are built to help your organization overcome the mounting security challenges faced by MSPs today.
✔ All-in-one monitoring software for MSPs who want to hit the ground running: SolarWinds RMM
SolarWinds® RMM is a cloud-based remote monitoring and management solution that helps MSPs deliver IT services fast. The dashboard is built to give you clarity, placing alerts front and center. Plus, it includes built-in remote access and security features to help you support and protect customers from day one.
If you’re an MSP that wants to start delivering valuable IT services right away, you can get set up with SolarWinds RMM in hours and then scale as you need. This remote monitoring and management solution is a nearly all-in-one tool that will save you from having to jump between multiple products.
With built-in tools like managed antivirus and secure remote access, you’ll have a versatile suite of tools at your fingertips in one dashboard. And if you want to go beyond managed antivirus, you can run SolarWinds Endpoint Detection and Response, powered by SentinelOne, to offer advanced endpoint protection capabilities for your customers. Centralizing your necessary capabilities in one place means you can hit the ground running with the assurance that your provider is more secure.
RMM covers everything from patch management to risk intelligence, combining multiple utilities into a single solution so your MSP can quickly start offering a standardized experience to your clients. If you’re interested in this remote monitoring software, a free trial is available.
✔ All-in-one monitoring software for MSPs who want more customization and power: SolarWinds N-central
If you’re a larger MSP with a varied portfolio of customers, it is crucial you offer customized support in a secure way. N-central® is a highly customizable tool that gives you more control and maximum flexibility. N-central also boasts features like NetPath™ and network topology mapping, which improve your visibility into customers’ networks so you can identify and troubleshoot issues with ease.
With built-in antivirus in addition to password management and endpoint protection, N-central’s Security Manager brings a host of security features. N-central also offers layered automation capabilities to boost efficiency and free up your technicians’ time, which is increasingly important in the face of the cybersecurity skills shortage.. A free trial of N-central can be accessed here.
✔ Email security software: SolarWinds Mail Assure
If email security is a concern for your MSP, then you’re not alone. Achieving optimal email security is a challenge for most organizations, with phishing tactics becoming harder to identify by the day. SolarWinds Mail Assure is cloud-based email security software that offers 24/7 email continuity, long-term email archiving, and collective threat intelligence to provide email security for both outbound and inbound email. This tool uses proprietary email filtering technology that processes mass volumes of email data to drive the Intelligent Protection and Filtering Engine. Mail Assure features real-time pattern threat detection as well as machine learning technology, meaning that the tool will grow even more powerful and accurate over time. To learn more, access a trial of Mail Assure here.
✔ Security-focused remote access software: SolarWinds Take Control
As mentioned, the challenge of providing remote support services while maintaining security can be daunting. SolarWinds Take Control was created specifically for MSPs and works to help deliver more secure remote support services to customers. This tool gives users access to deep diagnostics and unrivalled insight, and lets technicians connect to devices in less than a minute. All of this is achieved while maintaining top-level security protocols, including AES 256-bit encryption, multi-factor authentication, and automated clipboard deletion. A free trial is available.
✔ For secure backup software: SolarWinds Backup
Backups are a crucial part of keeping your MSP and your customers secure. When choosing your backup solution, it is important for the software you pick to make security a priority. SolarWinds Backup is an all-in-one, cloud-based backup tool that is highly versatile and user-friendly. It can schedule backup jobs in advance, includes bare metal recovery and virtual disaster recovery, and lets you check up on backup statuses. Most importantly, SolarWinds Backup takes a security-focused approach to storage, and offers global certified data centers, regional data storage, and data encryption at rest and in transit. To learn more, you can try this tool for free.
✔ For secure password and IT documentation management software: SolarWinds Passportal
SolarWinds Passportal is an extremely efficient tool that can help your organization face the challenge of maintaining secure password management as well as IT documentation. This tool offers robust auditing capabilities, password change automation, reporting, and privileged client documentation management functionalities—all in a single program. It helps MSPs almost instantly implement recommended password management best practices, with key data and credentials stored in an encrypted password vault. For extra security, the vault utilizes multi-factor authentication (MFA) and is only accessible to individuals with the appropriate role-based permissions. For more information, request a demo of Passportal today.
Equipping your team with MSP software built with security in mind
As we enter a new decade, IT service providers face a range of evolving challenges. One of the best ways to help overcome these challenges is to take advantage of the tools on the market built specifically for MSPs. Relying on these tools can lift the burden from your technicians, automate some of the more tedious tasks, and allow you to support your customers in a way that prioritizes security every step of the way.
Simply put, modern service providers need access to MSP tools that are dependable and were built with security in mind. Whether your company is concerned about the challenge of achieving secure remote monitoring, email security, or preventing data loss, refer to the above list to find out how an MSP tool may be able to help make your operations more secure today.