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What is a Managed Security Service Provider? MSSP Explained.

Managed Service Provider

First, let’s start by answering the question “What are Managed Services”. Managed services are basically outsourced proactive IT. A Managed Services Provider (MSP) differs from traditional outsourced IT in that Managed Services are proactive rather than reactive. Traditional outsourced IT is a break-fix model, where the IT team is only called when a computer or server is acting weird or is totally broken. The MSP model provides services on a subscription basis with additional services provided on a service by service basis. Services provided by an MSP are:

  • Software Support
  • Identification and Authentication
  • Systems Management
  • Data Backup and Recovery (Disaster Recovery)
  • Data Storage and Management
  • Cloud Transition and Management
  • Network Monitoring and Management

Managed Security Service Provider

Managed Security Services are similar in that an MSSP will provide many of the same services as an MSP, but the qualifying factor here is that an MSSP focuses on security first as well as providing security-specific services. Many MSPs can and do provide these security services but may not be focused on security first. An MSSP may provide MSP services or work with your MSP to secure your network. In addition to MSP services an MSSP provides:

  • Vulnerability Analysis and Management
  • Configuration Enforcement and Management
  • Intrusion Detection, Monitoring, and Response
  • Anti-Virus Management
  • Firewall Management
  • Email Protection

Why Choose a Managed Security Service Provider?

An MSSP brings a holistic approach to your security which is usually well above and beyond the cybersecurity that a typical MSP provides. In many cases, an MSSP will work with your IT department or your MSP so this could be an additional service that you outsource. If you have vital Intellectual Property, sensitive data (i.e. personally identifiable information, healthcare information, credit cards, etc…), or have assets that are critical to your business that cannot afford downtime then you will want to choose an MSSP. MSSPs assure the integrity, confidentiality, and availability of information and information technology.