Channel partners, Asia Pacific, Channel markets, MSSP

A CIO’s Perspective on Managed Security Services Requirements

Author: Trustwave VP Anandh Maistry
Author: Trustwave VP Anandh Maistry

A respected CIO in Australia recently came to us. He had been in the role for more than two years, and his small team of security professionals had done a lot to secure its environment. However, our CIO was kept awake at night by the worry that a serious cybersecurity incident would occur outside business hours. His small security team only worked 9-to-5, and he was not confident in his existing service provider's ability to notify, isolate and address any major security anomaly or incident, 24x7.

This CIO's organization is in the retail industry, with a large online presence, and he was experiencing similar challenges to most midsize businesses. As a company that accepts credit card payments, it had to adhere to the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS), and for many years had engaged with a service provider that assisted it to meet this compliance need. This was a good start on their own journey to managing security risk.

However, the CIO realized that the cybersecurity needs of the business were growing, and their risk tolerance was now being reviewed by management. Data breaches in their business could impact business continuity, expose confidential data and intellectual property, erode customer trust, and drastically impact revenues.

On the horizon are growing numbers of cyberattacks featuring increased sophistication. As the CIO told us, no longer do adversaries target the big guys. Instead they look for easy pickings in smaller organizations. The company needed to improve its current security posture, but its security budget was not growing on the optimal trajectory.

In fact, many of the reasons listed here prompted the CIO to ultimately partner with us for managed security services. And he is not alone. According to the " 2017 Security Pressures Report from Trustwave," 69 percent of Australian respondents said that they partnered with an MSSP to help compensate for lack of skilled security professionals or augment their own security staff.

Our CIO wanted to avoid needing a combination of fragmented vendors to make its security environment more advanced. He said he was looking for a partner that could:

  1. Work with the technologies in which his company had already invested.
  2. Improve service delivery on a similar budget to what his company was already paying.
  3. Offer a "single pane of glass" platform allowing his company to assess its current security posture in detail, as well as help with justifying the investment to senior management.
  4. Provide his company the option to acquire a complete range of 24x7x365 services, from endpoint to threat hunting to incident response, in a time frame and a consumption model that suited them (i.e. not a "firehose" of integrated prerequisites).

The solution that our engineers delivered the CIO works on-premises with its existing infrastructure, delivering managed threat detection 24x7 by security experts trained and ready to identify the trending malware affecting the retail industry today, based on the real-time global knowledge across nine federated Advanced Security Operations Centers. The company's portal access provides real-time analysis, as well as executive summaries that can be provided to the board. And the organization can now explore its additional needs for vulnerability scanning that would also link into that single portal.

The future for this CIO is peace of mind - not bringing home the pressure of the job with him - and a relieved workload for his team. The company now receives improved threat analysis and detection within its budget. And it has a partner that is there to work with it as its security needs grow.

Anandh Maistry is vice president of sales for Australia and New Zealand at Trustwave, a Top 100 MSSP. Read more Trustwave blogs here.