Staying Prepared with Your Managed Services Raleigh, NC Provider
Managed Services Raleigh, NC have really come a long way, and with good reason! When you contract Managed Services in Raleigh, NC, you have an expectation that you are going to get PROACTIVE service, meaning that the days of the stresses of break-fix models are behind you.
And why is the break-fix model so out-dated? Sure, you will go for months without having to pay for IT services, unlike the regular payments you make for Managed Services in Raleigh, NC. But under the old model, when troubles find you, you hire help, and it’s extremely expensive.
Think of it as preparing for an emergency. Imagine you build a building and you fail to put any fire alarms or fire extinguishers in it. Yes, you may save on costs up front, but let’s say nobody will move in unless these are provided. It’s going to be much more expensive after the fact to install them and find places to put them.
Now imagine that you built a building with no fire alarms or fire extinguishers, residents moved in, and there was a fire! Not only is the death and destruction going to be much, much worse, but what if your insurance policy doesn’t cover you because you overlooked the building codes? And what about your reputation? It’s going to be completely ruined!
Had you spent the little bit of time and money on simple precautionary measures, when the fire started, someone could have used an extinguisher and there could have been little-to-no-damage. Or if it did start to rage out of control, the fire alarms would have sounded, waking everyone in the building and saving most, if not ALL, residents. A little bit of planning can go a long way.
Now extending that scenario, say you built a brand new building and you included all the state-of-the-art fire equipment money could buy. A few years later, you retire and sell your business but the company you sell it to fails to change the batteries and allows the fire extinguishers to expire. There is a fire. Some of the alarms go off, but many don’t. Some of the fire extinguishers work, but many don’t.
There isn’t as much death and destruction as there would have been had there been NO emergency equipment, but had the company just kept them up-to-date with their fire alarms and extinguishers, it wouldn’t have been nearly as bad.
How are Managed Services in Raleigh NC different?
This is the difference between Managed Services Raleigh, NC and traditional break-fix companies. Think of traditional companies as the firemen. They come in and put out your fire but a lot of the damage has been done. Now think of Managed Services Raleigh, NC as your maintenance worker who can not only install the most modern equipment for you, but will also maintain and replace the equipment as needed and will be there to put out the fire, as well, if one does break out.
How much would you pay for the peace of mind that Managed Services Raleigh, NC would provide by setting up your business for its cybersecurity and IT needs, maintaining the technology, and being there for you IF you are hacked? It may not be as cheap as preparing nothing…
But that’s only IF nothing happens. And the way cybercriminals are targeting small businesses today, that’s taking a massive risk.
It’s Kind of Like a Subscription
Another way to look at Managed Services Raleigh, NC is by seeing it as a subscription. Subscription boxes are all the rage nowadays and that trend doesn’t seem to be going anywhere anytime soon. You can get anything from wine to makeup; from meats to veggie treats.
One of the most innovative and successful subscription boxes has been the Dollar Shave Club. Buying traditional razors and razor blades is really expensive and it’s a pain… A lot of times grocery stores and drug stores even put them under lock and key, thus forcing you to get a sales’ associate to unlock one for you. Not only that, but it can be a problem when you run out!
Managed Services Raleigh, NC is like a membership subscription. You pay a fixed amount every month, which, while not always cheap, is definitely less expensive than having a full-time IT Department. And it’s definitely more convenient than having to run out and find someone every time you have an issue. You pay proactively, not reactively, and you only pay for what you need.
So Not All Providers of Managed Services in Raleigh, NC are the Same?
That being said, not all Managed Services Raleigh, NC are created equal. Here are some things to look for when shopping around for the Managed Services Provider that best fits your needs in Raleigh, NC:
Proactive Approach. This is the single most important factor. Just like you don’t want a maintenance man who only shows up when there are fires, you want to make sure that your Managed Services Provider keeps your business’s networks, equipment, software and security up-to-date. No matter how proactive they are, though, it doesn’t really matter if they aren’t there when you need them. Which leads us to availability.
Availability. Nothing is worse than having to run around and search for your Managed Services Raleigh, NC Provider when there is an emergency. Not only is it extremely frustrating, but it can cost you, as well. If your network is down, or you are hacked, the more down time you have, the more your bottom line is impacted. Which leads to the next point…
Disaster Recovery Planning. It is imperative that your Managed Services Raleigh, NC Provider has experience creating and implementing disaster recovery plans. Does the company have the ability to securely back-up and store your data? Can they get you up and running again after an emergency? Make sure you can see their track record. Which brings us to the next point… Experience.
Experience. Does your Managed Services Raleigh, NC Provider have experience that would be beneficial to your company. Maybe they are network wizards, but do they have experience in HIPAA or NIST compliance? Make sure you find out what they specialize in so you aren’t left standing alone when you really need them. Speaking on needing them…
Employee Support. There’s a reason you are outsourcing your IT – because it is an extremely complex field and, most likely, none of your regular employees specialize in it. Which means they are going to have questions. Be sure that your Managed Services Raleigh, NC Provider will be available to help answer IT questions your employees may have, big and small. In fact, it would behoove you AND your business to find a Managed Services Provider who can also train your staff, especially when it comes to cybersecurity. But most importantly…
Is the Managed Services Provider in Raleigh, NC on board with NIST standards?
“Many small and medium sized businesses use managed service providers (MSPs) to remotely manage their organization’s IT infrastructure, cybersecurity, and related business operations. As a result, MSPs have become an attractive target for cyber criminals. When an MSP is vulnerable to a cyber attack, it also increases the vulnerability to the small or medium sized business that it supports. This project will provide guidance to MSPs on how to improve cybersecurity by implementing a secure IT architecture that reduces vulnerabilities to attacks such as ransomware.
This project will also provide MSPs with informed guidance that will enable them to adopt cybersecurity technologies and techniques that result in better security for themselves and their SMB customers. The goal of this project is to provide a cybersecurity reference model that MSPs can customize to fit their cybersecurity program needs. In the laboratory, the NCCoE will build a standards-based, modular, and end-to-end example solution(s) that will address a set of cybersecurity challenges aligned to the NIST Cybersecurity Framework v1.1. The approach may include architectural model definition, logical design, build development, test and evaluation, and security control mapping.
This project will result in a publicly available NIST Cybersecurity Practice Guide, a detailed implementation guide of the practical steps needed to implement a cybersecurity reference architecture model that addresses the challenge.”
Ask any Managed Services Provider in Raleigh if they follow NIST standards for cybersecurity. If they don’t, don’t pick them. We exceed the standards set by the NIST, and may we be so blunt as to say that we have a few suggestions for them as well?
We did have, is more like it. We did have a few suggestions for them. We already gave our suggestions to them. They were seeking feedback up until November 8th, 2019 on a draft project, Improving Cybersecurity of Managed Service Providers. We made sure they knew about patented technologies such as keystroke encryption and hard disk firewalls, which really should be required for any MSP.
If a Managed Services Provider in Raleigh didn’t have any feedback to give, you should wonder why they don’t have much to offer.
Or why they aren’t very involved with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).
We sure are.
As you can see, picking your Managed Services Raleigh, NC Provider is no simple task. There are a lot of factors to consider, and it’s also important to know the difference between Managed Services and more outdated, traditional methods of IT contracting. Unlike a fire, being unprepared may not cause injuries or even death, but leaving software unpatched, having untrained employees, and allowing for gaping holes in your networks and cybersecurity can most definitely cause destruction…and wreak havoc on your business.
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