There’s no doubt about it—the managed security services market is rife with opportunities for MSPs. Just look at the numbers. Markets and Markets™recently predicted that revenues from services of this type will exhibit a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 14.6% between 2016 and 2021, reaching $33.68 billion by the latter year. According to Allied Market Research™, the global managed security services market will hit $40.97 billion in 2022.
Gartner® also paints a pretty picture of the market. In its 2017 “Magic Quadrant® for Managed Security Services Providers (MSSPs),” the research firm characterized the managed services market as broad in terms of the variety of capabilities MSPs that position themselves as MSSPs can and should offer. These capabilities include:
The market for these capabilities spans all vertical sectors, research indicates, and is particularly ripe in highly regulated industries, such as healthcare and finance, as well as in retail. Still, customers in all segments will be looking to partner with a single entity, meaning that MSSPs who want to avail themselves of these opportunities should follow these four steps:
1. Bring in staff whose expertise supports offering a broad range of the above-mentioned services and capabilities, rather than just a few, or partner with other, perhaps larger MSSPs to fill in gaps.
2. Move beyond prevention-only approaches to focus heavily on detection and response. Enterprises are going in this direction, according to Gartner, and SMBs are likely to follow suit as perpetrators begin to focus their efforts on low-hanging fruit (i.e., firms that have yet to follow their larger counterparts in being highly proactive about detection and response). Gartner forecasts that worldwide spending on information security alone will reach $90 billion this year, representing an increase of 7.6% over 2016, and will exceed $113 billion by 2020. Spending on enhancing their detection and response capabilities is expected to be a key priority for security buyers through 2020, with the shift to detection and response approaches spanning people, process, and technology elements alike.
This doesn’t mean prevention is no longer important or that customers are abandoning the idea of preventing security incidents. However, as Sid Desphande, principal research analyst at Gartner, said in a recent statement, it sends a clear message that prevention is futile unless it is tied into a detection and response capability. This appears to be a message MSPs must also convey to their customers and potential customers in a loud and clear fashion.
3. Offer security analytics as a means of not only helping to stave off incidents, but to help determine which responses might be particularly effective in certain situations.
4. Push the managed security sales envelope with potential and existing SMB customers by emphasizing that their services cost far less than mitigation following incidents like data breaches. According to recent reports, players of all sizes in the healthcare vertical alone have shelled out billions of dollars as a consequence of data breaches in the past decade. Also well worth mentioning: the fact that as mobile devices and the Internet of Things (IoT) continue to gain ground, the technology needed to secure them and mitigate problems is becoming increasingly complicated—something few, if any, SMBs want to touch by themselves.
The bottom line is, managed security goes well beyond backup and disaster services. The earlier MSPs extend themselves in this subcategory, the more revenue they should be able to “secure”—and that’s more than just a pun.
Julie Ritzer Ross has been covering technology and its application in multiple vertical markets for more than 25 years. Her work has appeared in a variety of vertically focused publications including Transaction Trends, Hospitality Technology, Consumer Goods Technology, Integrated Solutions, Integrated Solutions for Retailers, Government Technology, RIS News and Vertical Systems Reseller (formerly Retail Systems Reseller).
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