Why Managed Security Services? In-House vs External Security

The reason why Managed Security Services Providers (MSSPs) are an elegant solution for many companies is twofold:

  1. They provide specialized experience at scale, enabling organizations to access expert security services without having to build in-house security teams.
  2. Companies of all sizes are increasingly recognizing that good security is good business. 

Cybersecurity and information technology risks continue to shift more rapidly than ever. Organizations of all sizes are coming under increasing regulatory scrutiny both in the United States and the European Union, with new requirements such as the U.S. SEC Data Breach rule and the EU’s NIS2 Directive. At the same time, a vast cybercrime underground continues to flourish, amplifying the ever-present threats of ransomware attacks, data breaches, and insider threats. 

But even beyond these well-known risks, having a solid information security foundation is just good business. It inspires confidence with partners, vendors, customers, and employees. Even more than that, it enables organizations to scale effectively without the omnipresent threat of ransomware attacks, data breaches, and compliance violations. 

Good security is good business. 

What is a Managed Security Services Provider?

Managed Security Services Providers (MSSPs) are an elegant and simple answer for organizations to reduce the risk of both regulatory noncompliance and experiencing a threat actor attack.

MSSPs centralize decades of security experience across different functions and organizations into a single entity, enabling small businesses to leverage security know-how and experience usually reserved for the world’s largest and most sophisticated corporations.

MSSPs can help organizations work through a variety of complex technical and regulatory challenges including: 

Compliance Frameworks and Regulatory Requirements 

Compliance requirements continue to proliferate adding additional regulatory impetus for organizations to improve their cybersecurity.

That’s one of the reasons why Managed Security Services Providers with extensive experience helping organizations meet a range of frameworks (such as SOC 2, ISO 27001, PCI DSS, FedRAMP, GDPR, and others) are increasingly seen as the best route to go to meet requirements. 

Many organizations see regulatory requirements as purely a cost. However, collaborating with the right MSSP company can help transform these requirements into a net benefit that can be applied across the organization. 

Compliance for businessesThere’s a reason that 75% of companies who achieve some level of continuous compliance view their compliance program as a business driver. Meeting regulatory and voluntary standards boosts your ability to serve more clients, unblock sales, and expand into additional markets.

Organizations that need to process Protected Health Information (PHI) as part of their work for healthcare providers, for instance, must be HIPAA compliant. Similarly, achieving FedRAMP compliance expands the number of customers you can reach, enabling you to enter the marketplace government agencies use to find services. 

Enterprise sales opportunities will want to see compliance with regulations relevant to their industry such as SOC 2, GDPR, HIPAA, and PCI before even considering an engagement. Working with an MSSP simplifies the process of achieving and maintaining compliance standards, ensuring you are able to break into new marketplaces as your company grows. 

Penetration Testing

It’s no secret that the threat landscape continues to drive higher levels of risk.

Increases in geopolitical tension, growth in cybercrime, and the rapidly evolving risk of ransomware attacks all directly increase risk to organizations. Penetration testing can directly reduce much of this risk. Similar to the importance of continuous compliance discussed above, when exploring how to select the right pen testing vendor, companies should consider the importance of continuous communication and a collaborative approach with the pen tester. 

A good pen testing firm will work with you to scope the pen test to your organization’s specific requirements and risks. For example, organizations that offer their data via API may benefit from API penetration testing while organizations with web applications may need pen testing specifically scoped to address common vulnerabilities in web applications.

A rigorous penetration test can identify flaws in your application or corporate security that an attacker could exploit. In addition, they can strengthen your compliance posture and reassure potential auditors that your organization takes security seriously. 

An MSSP that offers pen testing as a service will collaborate with you to understand your business requirements and scope the pen test to vulnerabilities that threat actors are most likely to exploit based on your unique risk posture. For example, Rhymetec offers a variety of pen testing engagements, including web application, API, network, and mobile application pen testing

Virtual CISO Services

Security isn’t a one-time initiative. It’s an evolving process that requires buy-in from individuals across the organization.

Virtual CISO (vCISO) services serve as the linchpin of a security program. A vCISO acts as your organization’s security expert – enabling you to leverage executive security expertise without the need to employ a full-time CISO. 

A vCISO can advise you on: 

  • When to make additional security investments
  • Which security policies and procedures would most benefit your organization 
  • Emerging threats that may pose a risk to your business 
  • Maintaining robust security throughout complex engagements like cloud migrations
  • Upcoming changes to compliance regulations that may need to be addressed
  • Preparing you for compliance or data privacy audits 

A good vCISO has an in-depth understanding of compliance requirements, coupled with the technical resources needed to implement security controls in the context of the threat landscape. Managed Security Services offering a vCISO service provide companies of all sizes access to this valuable combination of skills.

In addition, a vCISO enables you to maintain a posture of continuous compliance

Why Managed Security Services Providers Encourage Continuous Compliance

At Rhymetec, we believe compliance shouldn’t be a sprint right before an audit.

Organizations that make compliance core to their business can maintain a posture of constant compliance, reducing the stress and overhead associated with compliance while also ensuring that audit requirements are met.

A common misconception is that smaller businesses are exempt in some way from needing to meet requirements. However, requirements are generally stipulated across the board for most companies regardless of size. 

Going beyond compliance frameworks, which represent a reasonable baseline but fall far from the finish line compared to an actual security program, vCISOs are able to implement additional security controls based on the unique risks an organization faces. Before building out or improving upon an existing security program, a vCISO will consider customer requirements and pinpoint specific laws and threats that apply to an organization and its vendors. 

Why Managed Security Services through a vCISO Program

Opting for a vCISO service enables small and mid-size businesses to be certain they meet compliance standards while also leveraging their security dollars to reduce the risk of data breaches and ransomware attacks.

Let’s expand on the main reasons why managed security services are an agile solution for smaller organizations: 

Why Managed Security Services? Specialized Experience At Scale. 

The reason organizations choose to work with MSSPs is simple – specialized experience at scale. An average MSSP will often have experts on their team across many disciplines to include: 

  • Job Title (Salary range for an in-house full-time hire)
  • CISO ($215,000 – $275,000 per year) 
  • Cloud Security Specialist ($110,000 – $150,000 per year)
  • Application Security Specialist ($130,000 – $180,000 per year)
  • Penetration Tester ($110,000 – $150,000 per year)
  • Security Operations Analyst ($110,000 – $160,000 per year) 
  • Threat Intelligence Analyst ($80,000 – $140,000 per year)
  • Governance, Risk and Compliance Specialist ($65,000 – $100,000 per year)
  • Vulnerability Management Analyst ($100,000 – $165,000 per year)

Large enterprises spend millions of dollars on a security team with many highly specialized individuals across a range of disciplines. Small businesses need the same level of experience but not necessarily the same amount of work. Managed Security Services fill this gap perfectly. 

Why Managed Security Services? It’s Good Business.

Organizations are increasingly scrutinizing their vendors for security practices.

Suffering a major breach leaves a company scrambling to notify consumers, reassure investors, and manage employee fears. Proactively tackling cybersecurity, compliance, and data privacy  by getting your SOC 2 Report (or other compliance audits), engaging in routine penetration testing, and utilizing vCISO services can serve as an amplifier across the rest of your business activities. 

Having an MSSP as a continuous resource also simply provides peace of mind. When compliance frameworks are inevitably updated, when an auditor requests an evaluation of third-party risk, when you need things like phishing testing services to fulfill controls, or when you receive a security questionnaire from a customer – you’ll know where to go for immediate and expert assistance. 

Proactively providing SOC 2 Type 2 Reports to potential customers immediately makes your business stand out while also preventing the need for time-consuming security questionnaires. A vCISO service can help your organization identify and prepare for upcoming compliance regulations, saving costs and time in the long run.

Finally, working with an MSSP lets you leverage talent from across a variety of disciplines without the need to build large in-house teams. 

Exploring Managed Security Services?

Rhymetec was founded in 2015 as a Penetration Testing company. Since then, we have served hundreds of SaaS businesses globally in all their cybersecurity, compliance, and data privacy needs. We’re industry leaders in cloud security, and our custom services align with the specific needs of your business. 

If you want to learn more about how and why Managed Security Services can be an accelerator for your business, contact our team for more information. 



About the Author: Justin Rende, CEO 

Justin Rende has been providing comprehensive and customizable technology solutions around the globe since 2001. In 2015 he founded Rhymetec with the mission to reduce the complexities of cloud security and make cutting-edge cybersecurity services available to SaaS-based startups. Under Justin’s leadership, Rhymetec has redesigned infosec and data privacy compliance programs for the modern SaaS-based company and established itself as a leader in cloud security services.