Does Your SMB Need Advanced Cybersecurity Support

Every business needs to pay attention to securing their data. However, if your small or mid-sized business has to manage unusually sensitive data, you may need to take additional security measures to protect it.

What type of data warrants more advanced cybersecurity measures?

If your SMB needs to deal with data that falls under one or more of these categories, you may need to seriously consider going beyond the standard precautions due to the potential impact:

  • Your Business’s Intellectual Property
    Product specifications for patented products, technical drawings, and even recipes for exclusive products – anything which gives your company its competitive edge must be protected from competitors.
  • Proprietary Business Information
    Customer lists, supplier information, and pricing details would be valuable to rival companies interested in stealing some of your market share and competitive advantages.
  • Customer Financial Information
    If stolen, bank account numbers, credit card numbers, and investment details can be used to commit fraud.
  • Personally Identifiable Information (PII)
    If you need to comply with privacy legislation in the jurisdiction in which your customers are located, you will need to take further precautions to protect their PII.
  • Medical Information
    If the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) applies to your business, you must protect personal medical histories and other medical information.

Advanced cybersecurity measures are best implemented by companies offering specific security services that can be either offered directly, and/or coordinated by an experienced managed service provider (MSP). The MSP can offer IT support, analyze your security requirements, and use partners to provide specialized security services. Working with a well-qualified MSP helps to ensure you get the protection you need in a comprehensive security services package.

Security Operations Centers (SOCs) Can Help You Monitor Your IT Systems on an Ongoing Basis

Basic security strategies include implementing resilient network architectures, adopting secure login procedures, encryption, and physical security, and prompt installation of security updates. The goal of these strategies is to “raise the bar” of difficulty that unauthorized individuals need to overcome to access your sensitive data.

SOCs take these efforts to a higher level by continuously monitoring IT systems and network traffic for unusual activity. The SOC team constantly looks at traffic patterns, log-in activity, and outside system access attempts to identify suspicious behavior. When they see potential risks, the team can analyze what is happening and decide on possible courses of action.

The good news is that some suspicious activity can turn out to be harmless. For example, an employee might have forgotten their password and attempted multiple log-ins. The SOC team would flag this behavior but track it to the employee. On the other hand, numerous log-in attempts could also signal a hacker trying to break into the network. An SOC can immediately detect threatening activity and decide if countermeasures are needed.

Managed Security Services Providers (MSSPs) Can Help with Advanced Cybersecurity

To be sure, implementing even basic security in-house can be challenging. Often, your in-house expertise is lacking. In addition, your in-house IT team may be preoccupied with day-to-day operations. Putting advanced cybersecurity in place is even more challenging to do. An MSSP can help the in-house team with this by supplying advanced IT support, security-related analyses, recommendations, and help with implementation. With a qualified provider, you can be sure that your security is at the level you need.

An MSSP typically starts with a data security assessment. They look at the data, the risks, the compliance requirements, the infrastructure, and the connected devices. Based on their analysis, they recommend solutions that meet your needs. Recommendations will usually include some services delivered directly by the MSSP and others by top cybersecurity partners. Every business is different, and each has specific security issues related to their areas of activity and the systems in place. An experienced MSSP can consider these business-specific factors when developing recommended solutions.

Finally, an MSSP will conduct ongoing security performance evaluations. The security environment is constantly changing, with threats evolving and new risks appearing. MSSPs keep track of developments in the security marketplace and keep you updated on new products and services that could be helpful to you. Outdated systems create additional risks, and you can rely on your MSSP to keep you up to date and help you avoid obsolescence.

Managed Detection and Response (MDR) Can Help Increase Security Levels

Sometimes a company’s security needs can include a high-level cybersecurity package that identifies threats and their mitigation. An MDR turnkey package operates as a defined technology stack that typically consists of an SOC. It takes care of many advanced cybersecurity needs and can cover a wide range of threats.

While an MSSP can design a custom package that offers a range of cybersecurity services to fit a specific business, an MDR package can be a good fit for companies with high-level security needs. An MSSP can complement the MDR’s services when additional security functions are required. MSSPs can also continue to provide ongoing evaluations of the performance of your cybersecurity services.

Determine the Level of Cybersecurity Needed by Your Business

GSDSolutions provides IT support and data security management services for small and mid-sized businesses in the Bay Area and the Central Valley. Give us a call to get a free consultation that can help you determine whether your current cybersecurity strategy is adequate for protecting your extra-sensitive data.

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