After industrial revolution of the 18th century, if there’s one thing that changed the course of businesses around the globe, it’s internet revolution. Since its beginning, in the 1990s it has transformed virtually every facet of business in this time span of 25 - 27 years. The number of websites has exploded, and so has the number of ways in which it can be utilized by the businesses for their various needs.
However, the increasing digitization has also brought with it the challenges of cyber security. Today cyber crimes have emerged as a big headache for corporations of all types and sizes. B2B firms are usually hit the worst from them because the trust of clients is tough to be earned back. When it comes to the security of B2B firms, there’s no room for mistakes.
However, as security staffs in the IT departments of these firms get overwhelmed with managing the security incidents and conducting compliance audits, there’s emerging a room for mistakes and CISOs are facing a number of vital questions:
- How to embrace the latest security standards and regulations when security staff is already overwhelmed and IT budget isn’t allowing new hires?
- How robust are their security architecture, business practices, and controls?
- How frequently should they review the implementation of new technologies?
- Most importantly, as a conclusion of above-given questions, how well prepared are they to fight back against skilled adversaries?
While there’s no easy answer to all these questions, a new emerging enterprise security trend is promising some great solutions. The name of that trend is Security as a Service (SECaaS). Let’s learn more about it and how are B2B firms utilizing its power to protect themselves from cyber crimes.
What is Security as a Service?
Security as a Service, or SECaaS for short, is basically a business model followed by companies that provide cloud based security services to corporations. The security services provided this way are called Managed Security Services (MSS) and the companies offering them are called Managed Security Service Providers (MSSPs). The services usually offered this way by MSSPs include authentication, intrusion detection, antiviruses and malware scanners etc. Their popularity among enterprises is increasing at a rapid pace.
Benefits of SECaaS
The trend of utilizing MSSPs among enterprises hasn’t any reason. They provide many amazing benefits to enterprises; therefore they’re slowly becoming the de facto standard of security (especially among B2B firms). Some of the major benefits provided by them include:
#1. Easy compliance with norms
When it comes to security, the norms keep changing at a rapid pace. New types of attacks are devised by cyber criminals frequently, and cyber security firms do their best to stay ahead of the bad guys. It’s a never-ending race, and if you keep the security of your company entirely in your own hands then you need to run fast to stay ahead in this race. That, as you may expect, requires a large IT budget and very talented employees.
However, if you outsource your security to an MSSP you can stay ahead in the security race without a big IT budget and talent pool. The security of your company becomes the duty of another company, and with that, you also get relieved from the headache of staying compliant with fast changing security norms. They’ll do that for your company, and as long as you choose a reputed MSSP to rest assured because they’ll do it better than you could’ve done yourself.
#2. Robust business practices
Since MSSPs are in the business of providing security, they usually do almost everything possible to ensure the security of their clients. Some of their robust business practices include:
- Round-the-clock monitoring: They monitor the security of your systems 24x7 for all 365 days of the year, something which majority of enterprises with on-premise security solutions fails to do.
- Highly skilled professionals: They hire the most skilled, experienced and talented security professionals to ensure that they can find solutions for new security threats immediately after they emerge. No matter how little the supply of truly skilled IT security professionals, you can always find them working with reputed MSSPs.
- Early detection of threats: MSSPs that operate globally often figure spot security threats as soon as they emerge. In other words, they specialize in threat detection. So there’s a good chance that they’ll fix a security loophole before it becomes a trouble for you.
#3. Defense against skilled adversaries
Their talented and skilled IT security workforce and state of the art security software and hardware can protect you against the attacks of most skilled adversaries even.
#4. The cost advantage
And this is the best part - all of the above-given advantages cost a fraction of what they would’ve cost you if you’d have deployed them in-house. Since MSSPs sell their services to a number of clients, they can recover the cost of providing them from all their clients. The cost gets distributed, and that’s why you end up paying much less than what you’d have paid if you would’ve put together all the security hardware, software and talent pool yourself.
Now let’s see two cases of how MSSPs selling security services to an SECaaS model help enterprises in ensuring security without breaking the bank:
Domain Security with SECaaS
Domain names make an important part of your brand identity, and that becomes even more important when you’re a B2B firm. Even a single attack on your domain name that redirects your potential clients to some other website can be enough to hurt their trust in your business. Therefore, it’s important for you to keep your domains protected from cyber attacks. And fortunately, you can do that easily with help of MSSPs.
By using the services of a managed DNS provider you can avoid domain hijacking and all other types of attacks that are done on domain names. That is because all reputed managed DNS providers go to extreme lengths for protecting their customers. Some of the security mechanisms utilized by them include:
- Global anycast networks;
- Redundant name server infrastructure;
- Diverse name server software (i.e. BIND, NSD etc.) to protect from the disaster that a single software bug can do;
- Extensive DDoS Attack prevention mechanisms.
Together these security arrangements can make it very difficult for anyone to hijack the traffic of your domain.
Credit card fraud is another major trouble that can put your B2B firm in an embarrassing situation, but MSSPs and SECaaS can help you here as well. Reputed MSSPs can help you in preventing credit card fraud by ensuring PCI compliance in an effective and efficient manner. They can provide impressive intrusion detection systems, solid ways to encrypt, store and transfer credit card data and reliable networks with no single-point of failure. Plus, MSSPs can also protect you against latest security threats as they emerge because that’s exactly what they do in their business.
Specifically, all industry standard Cloud or SaaS delivery model have HTTPS SSL certificate security that enables the utilization of solid encryption to ensure all traffic. Merchants should use encoded frames for all communication transmitted between a customer and a web server. These protocols should be designed with strong encryption algorithms and strict user authentication.
In short, we can say that SECaaS has the answer to every vital security question that CISOs are facing these days. Whether it’s adapting to new security standards, the robustness of controls and practices, reviewing new technologies or protection against sophisticated cyber criminals - all can be achieved easily with help of MSSPs. And that too without spoiling your IT budget. What else a B2B firm’s CISO may need? As a result, no surprise that more and more CISOs are opting for this new security trend to protect their business information. You too should give MSSPs a serious thought while planning the security strategy of your enterprise.