MAX Service Desk: helping you put security into practice

Pete Roythorne

If you see MAX Service Desk as just a ticketing solution, then you’re missing out on something that could be key to growing your business and adding value to your customers. This is particularly true in the area of security where it can be a powerful tool.

To understand how we need to have a deeper understanding of the concept of IT Service Management (ITSM), which forms the core of what MSPs do: delivering and building business services (whether it’s an email system of server configuration); and then supporting those systems that they have built.

From an ITSM perspective, a service desk is critical as it enables MSPs to have all the information they need about a customer and their configurations in one place. This offers MSPs a great way to organise their core business, as well as enabling them to get more out of themselves and their technicians. Furthermore, it allows them to manage their resources appropriately and deliver against SLAs.

For SLAs a service desk can be programmed to any specification and vary between customers depending on the specific terms of the agreement; such as having a one-hour response time and four-hour fix time.

But where does security fit into this?

network securityITSM was developed as a concept when the Internet wasn’t a scary place. No one was as concerned about security back then, so the focus was on service delivery and support. However, as IT admins got a better view of the networks they were working with, they were able to develop an awareness of the security on those networks. They could see what was going on and the troubles any network was facing – such as what needed patching or what apps needed updating. From here best practices could be created so that anyone could follow them, and this is how any good MSP should be working today.

A service desk system allows MSPs to store all this best practice documentation in one place, linked to the customer and their knowledge base. This enables the MSP to deliver consistency of service, no matter who the technician is.

Consider this from a security perspective: You can set up your service desk to alert you to specific incidences, and if your Remote Monitoring and Management (RMM) platform is configured correctly it will send alerts into the service desk. Some of those are going to be benign, but others can be indications of compromise. Blending information from different sources will help you decide.

In this way a service desk acts as the collection point for the information coming from the RMM tool and the end-user experience. For example, by matching up a call from a user, saying they can’t access a bunch of files and a series of alerts from the RMM tool about the increased performance of a server, MSPs could see this as a solid indication that they were responding to a ransomware attack.

Flawlessly execute DR and BR plans every time

recoveryFrom here they can go to the client with the correct documentation on how to execute a disaster recovery and business recovery plan – all supplied through the service desk. They could see, for example, that there is a cloud-based backup that CryptoLocker couldn’t get to, and from there they could isolate and restore the offending workstation and restore any compromised files.

In this way, a service desk becomes your playbook of what to do in the event of having one of your customers go down. A lot of companies and even MSPs have huge problems dealing with crisis, so being able to handle this effectively is a huge win.

We’re seeing a lot of disturbing information around security and predicted global spend for 2015 was $76.9bn. The reality is we are going to spend more in 2016! So there is a massive market opportunity for MSPs that can deliver best practices in this area. By looking at a service desk as an enabling tool; MSPs can become more efficient and take on bigger opportunities in this area.

Find out more about how MAX Service Desk can give you the edge in security as well as delivering great service to your customers, click here to watch the whole of the webinar.