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Trustwave Security Report: 45% of IT Pros Plan to Partner with an MSSP


Security pressure remains high for organizations around the globe, and many organizations are partnering with MSSPs to alleviate this pressure, according to a survey of 1,600 IT professionals conducted by Trustwave -- a Top 100 MSSP and compliance, threat and vulnerability management services provider.

Overall, 78 percent of IT professionals are likely to or already partner with an MSSP, Trustwave's "2018 Security Pressures Report" revealed. The report showed 45 percent of respondents plan to partner with an MSSP in the future, and 33 percent already partner with an MSSP.

Security pressure is increasing for many organizations, which is reflected in the following Trustwave survey results:

  • 54 percent of IT professionals experienced more security pressure in 2017 when compared to 2016, and 55 percent expect 2018 to bring more security pressure than 2017.
  • The majority of respondents ranked external threats (57 percent) as a greater risk to their organization than internal threats (43 percent). In addition, unauthorized file transfers (24 percent) ranked as the riskiest insider threat, followed by the installation of unauthorized software or malware (22 percent).
  • Customer data theft (34 percent) ranked as the most-worrying post-data breach consequence.
  • Advanced security threats such as sophisticated malware and zero-day vulnerabilities (26 percent) caused the greatest concern at the operational level, followed by lack of budget (17 percent) and lack of skilled security expertise (16 percent).
  • Preventing malware (22 percent) ranked as the top security stressor, followed by identifying vulnerabilities (17 percent) and phishing attacks (13 percent).

The survey also revealed IT professionals often choose speed over security (58 percent) in comparison to security over speed (42 percent), Trustwave stated. However, MSSPs can help organizations reap the benefits of fast, efficient security, as these services providers enable organizations to quickly deploy security solutions to address advanced cyber threats.

Why Are Organizations Partnering with MSSPs?

Several factors influence an organization's decision to partner with an MSSP, according to the Trustwave survey. These factors include:

  • Talent: An MSSP can help an organization compensate for an in-house skill shortage.
  • Security Technology Adoption and Deployment: An MSSP can help an organization adopt, deploy and operate hard-to-use security technologies.
  • Security Automation: An MSSP can help an organization automate its security processes and systems.

MSSPs can deliver visibility and intelligence into advanced threats and continuity of operations that other security providers cannot match, Trustwave noted in its report. As organizations search for ways to alleviate security pressure, the demand for MSSPs may increase accordingly.

Dan Kobialka

Dan Kobialka is senior contributing editor, MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E. He covers IT security, IT service provider business strategies and partner programs. Dan holds a M.A. in Print and Multimedia Journalism from Emerson College and a B.A. in English from Bridgewater State University. In his free time, Dan enjoys jogging, traveling, playing sports, touring breweries and watching football.