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Essential Components of a Managed Security Service

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Companies have more demands on their networks than ever. At the same time, the challenges facing IT departments are increasing. For example, enterprise networks have grown more complex; LAN/WAN infrastructure is consolidating and converging; and security threats are everywhere. Businesses looking to compete must focus on their core money-making activities so they often don’t have the bandwidth to be as vigilant as they should when it comes to security.

That’s where managed security services comes in. With the right solution, you can keep your IT infrastructure up to date and safe with a balance of security and agility, while meeting compliance standards and adhering to company security policies.

Managed security services go beyond your base configuration for colocation or the cloud. These are some of the most important elements of a top managed security service:

  • Firewall: A firewall is the first step toward a secure environment. Firewall policies help filter out invalid traffic on your network.
  • Managed Intrusion Detection and Prevention (MIDPS): In addition to traditional firewalls, it is important to monitor your environment in an active capacity. MIDPS blocks a full range of security threats – from buffer overflows and DDoS attacks to viruses and malware and OS vulnerabilities.
  • File Integrity Monitoring (FIM): FIM provides notification upon any system file change. System files with unauthorized changes may contain malicious code designed to gather user ID’s and passwords, or transmit sensitive data outside your organization.
  • Virtual Private Network (VPN): A VPN allows employees to securely connect to your environment from anywhere at any time so they can work with your data securely.
  • Multifactor Authentication: Single factor authentication only requires a user name and a password or PIN. Multifactor authentication requires employees to enter their user name and password and then enter a second authentication method. This could be a token code from a key fob or a PIN code sent to their mobile device. This helps prevent lost or stolen user names and passwords from being used to gain access to your network and to ensure that the person logging in is the person the account actually belongs to.
  • Web Content and Filtering: Security isn’t just about outsiders hacking into your network. Employees unknowingly engage in unsafe online behavior by clicking on malicious links in an email or visiting a compromised website. Many organizations want to filter what employees have access to on the Web to reduce this security threat.
  • HIPAA and PCI Compliance: A managed security service can make it easy to check off compliance regulations regarding data center security by employing robust processes, security technologies and expert personnel.
  • Log Management: Log management is an effective approach to manage and monitor logs. Organizations effectively protect against security threats, while achieving compliance with and comprehensive reporting for regulatory mandates such as PCI and HIPAA.

So why choose third-party managed security services, rather than tackling all of the above with your own team? Here are three reasons to outsource:

  1. Stronger Security Focus

    A managed security service, with its 24/7 operations and experts whose sole focus is IT security, offers a stronger security focus — and IT managers a good night’s sleep  — than that of an IT team that also works on many other core-business projects.

  2. Lower Costs

    Staffing up to meet security requirements can be expensive, and security-related breaches can be costly to your bottom line. In addition, keeping your IT team focused on security issues, away from core business objectives, can be a costly decision. A third-party managed security service can keep costs in line.

  3. Above-and-Beyond Network Protection

    Effective IT security is a multi-pronged approach. Firewalls are an important line of defense, but additional services such as MIDPS, FIM and multifactor authentication help secure other attack vectors inside your network. Stopping infiltration is the first goal. Preventing or mitigating damage once infiltrators are inside your environment is just as important.

Save Costs and Your Company’s Reputation

For any company, security, governance and compliance are essential to doing business—and maintaining a favorable reputation in the marketplace and public eye. After all, no organization wants to be the next company in the headlines suffering from serious and consequential breaches.

Breaches can cause irreparable harm to companies and customers, and cost IT staff their jobs. Mitigate attacks and make sure security is integrated into your infrastructure rather than simply bolted-on as it has been for most companies in the past. Managed security services can do that, protecting your data infrastructure and network while saving you time and money.

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About Peak 10

"Our values are the foundation for everything we do at Peak 10, and are ultimately what enable us to earn our customers' business and their trust."
David H. Jones,
Board Member, Peak 10 + ViaWest