Outsourcing Cybersecurity: A Complete Guide to Keeping Your Business Safe Online

Outsourcing Cybersecurity: A Complete Guide to Keeping Your Business Safe Online
Article by Sumana GangulySumana Ganguly
Last Updated: September 09, 2022

The world has become a much more connected place. As a result of this increased connectivity and usage of digital services, cyberattacks have become more prevalent and sophisticated.

Data breaches, service provider vulnerabilities, and third-party vendors compromise sensitive consumer information. Over the past year, security attacks have increased by 31%.

While it's clear that organizations need to take their cybersecurity efforts more seriously than ever, most companies don't have the right resources or know-how to tackle these security issues alone.

As a result, many businesses are turning to outside help and look for cybersecurity providers.

This guide explains everything you should learn about outsourced cybersecurity, including choosing the right outsourcing agency for your business.

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What is Outsourcing in Cybersecurity?

Outsourcing is a business practice in which organizations delegate specific tasks or processes to another service provider.

Over the years, outsourcing services has become a preferred business model for many organizations, offering cost reduction, manageability, and scalability.

Research predicts the cost of cybercrime to hit $10.5 trillion by 2025. That’s why cybersecurity outsourcing has become an option for many businesses.

With outsourced cybersecurity, companies have embraced the necessity of a robust information technology infrastructure but have limited resources and talent to erect it.

Cybersecurity Outsourcing Terminologies

For many businesses, outsourced cyber security may be a new topic and one that seems quite complicated to plan.

That's why understanding some of these standard terms is the first step toward learning how to protect your business from cybercriminals.

  • Cyberattack - One of the biggest threats to any business, no matter its size or industry, is a cyberattack. It is often called an intrusion on security measures and can take many forms, such as denial-of-service attacks, identity theft, and phishing scams.
  • Cybersecurity - Cybersecurity is a multidiscipline discipline that ensures information availability, integrity, confidentiality, and non-repudiation.
  • Firewall - A firewall is one way to prevent intrusions into your network or server by hackers who try to break through and access private files. These experts analyze incoming traffic, stopping unauthorized requests before they reach their target and granting only approved requests permission to enter the network.
  • Information Security - Information security is the multifaceted discipline preventing unauthorized access, use, disclosure, disruption, modification, inspection, or destruction of information.
  • Operational Security - Operational security is a set of security practices designed to protect the confidentiality and integrity of an organization's assets and systems.
  • Security Information and Event Management (SIEM) - One solution for preventing data breaches or hacking attempts is SIEM software. SIEM in cybersecurity analyzes real-time log messages sent from various points within your organization's IT infrastructure, detects suspicious activity, and then alerts staff about possible vulnerabilities.
  • Virtual Private Network (VPN) - Connecting remotely? VPNs are essential tools businesses use to allow remote users safe and reliable connections over public networks like Wi-Fi hotspots while protecting their privacy and personal information using robust encryption technology.

8 Types of Cyberattacks to Watch Out For

Your business can be attacked at any time by various types of cyberattacks. And if you don't prepare for them, your company could see serious consequences.

There are the main types of cyberattacks:

  • Data Breach - It refers to data gathered through a cyberattack and the aftermath of it. When an organization's security is breached, the organization may suffer from lost customer trust, damaged reputation, and financial losses resulting from fraud or business interruption.
  • DDoS Attack - A distributed denial-of-service attack (DDoS) occurs when multiple systems flood the bandwidth or resources of a targeted approach to make it unavailable to its intended users.
  • Man-in-the-Middle Attack - A man-in-the-middle attack is when someone secretly listens in on your conversation by connecting with you on either end so they can see all your information being shared back and forth without you knowing they are there.
  • Malware - Malware, short for malicious software, is any program designed to disrupt computer operation, gather sensitive information, gain access to private computer systems, or display unwanted advertising messages on a user’s computer screen without their knowledge or consent.
  • Phishing Attacks - Phishing is when hackers use email, social media posts, texts, etc., purporting to be from trustworthy sources, to trick people into revealing sensitive personal information. Once hackers get info like usernames and passwords, it allows them to take control over individual accounts or computers.
  • Ransomware Attacks - In this attack, intruders lock up an individual's files until they pay for an electronic key or ransom to unlock them again.
  • Spyware - Spyware monitors and extracts personal data from infected PCs remotely. Spyware includes various types of malware, such as Trojans, viruses, worms, logic bombs, keyloggers, botnets, rootkits, and scareware.
  • Spoofing - Spoofing attacks involve emails or websites that pretend to come from one entity but are linked to another that might have malicious intent.

What Are the Tasks You Can Outsource?

Faced with these circumstances, companies may look to contract a more significant number of services than they can handle internally, given a limited staff.

Risks are everywhere in the modern world, and cybercrime is one of the biggest. The digital space is riddled with cracks for a cybercriminal to worm their way into your business and steal your data, leading to many potential consequences.

It's necessary to evaluate where your risks are coming from and the various tasks you can outsource for your business's cybersecurity so that you can reduce any unnecessary vulnerabilities.

  • Penetration Testing - A penetration test occurs when an external hacker attempts to penetrate the organization's network or computer system. For this, you could look into hiring an expert penetration testing company or choose to do it in-house.
  • Vulnerability Assessment - A vulnerability assessment will find areas of weakness within an organization's security systems and advise how to fix them.
  • Virus Protection - Keeping your devices clean with virus protection is vital because these malicious programs often hide deep within computers or networks and attack data before it can be saved onto your machine or backed up elsewhere.
  • Employee Awareness - More companies realize the importance of keeping their employees aware of cyber threats. Many make it mandatory for all staff members to take regular cybersecurity awareness courses.
  • Data Backup - Your data backup strategy must be strong enough to protect your files even if hackers manage to infiltrate your primary server.
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Why Do Organizations Outsource Cybersecurity?

As the field of cyber security has evolved into a complex, specialized discipline, many organizations have found it increasingly difficult to recruit and retain top-notch talent.

It can be due to various factors, including salary and skill set issues, a lack of internal training programs, or a lack of job satisfaction.

As a result, organizations have found it challenging to keep up with the pace of technological change and have lacked the resources necessary to keep their data secure.

Many companies have been slow to invest in their security programs due to the lack of an immediate threat.

Because cybersecurity issues often don't result in immediate, tangible impacts like a supply chain disruption, many businesses have chosen to defer investing in cybersecurity until necessary.

Thus, the cybersecurity field has ballooned as businesses struggle to keep up with the demand for their services.

4 Benefits of Cybersecurity Outsourcing

  • Access to knowledgeable, experienced professionals with cutting-edge technology - You'll get better insight into how an attack happens and be able to use it to prevent it in the future.
  • Reduced costs - As a breach's cost grows more extensive, you may want to outsource for additional protection from cybercriminals. Not only will this give you peace of mind, but it will also help reduce overhead expenses that would otherwise grow.
  • Protection against breaches caused by staffing shortages or staff turnover - When you outsource cybersecurity needs, you don’t have to worry about finding qualified personnel on short notice or managing employees who leave the company after being there for a year or two.
  • Increased efficiency due to centralization - A centralized service provider, means less management and fewer human errors because there is more oversight. If one thing goes wrong at one office location, another person can step in remotely.

When Should You Outsource Your Business’s Cybersecurity?

There are innumerable ways that hackers can get into your network and wreak havoc on your systems, potentially costing you thousands of dollars or more.

Even if it's not the right time to outsource your business's cybersecurity, that doesn't mean you should be unprepared for any cyberattacks on your company.

The best time to outsource your business's cybersecurity is before you could even identify a threat. It takes an average of 287 days for IT teams to spot and contain a data breach.

It's better to get cybersecurity help before hackers get into your system and all of the company's private information is exposed.

Consider what information is sensitive to your business and how easily hackers can compromise it.

Many small businesses save money on their cyber security costs by using services provided by outsourced teams.

8 Things to Look for in a Cybersecurity Service Provider

Outsourcing your IT department's cybersecurity shouldn't be a hit-or-miss endeavor.

After all, you're hiring an organization to protect your business from external threats and ensure your security protocols are airtight.

Here are some factors to consider when choosing a security service provider:

  1. Services Offered - Ask about the provider's services, including audit or vulnerability assessment, endpoint protection, network security monitoring, web application firewall, backup, and disaster recovery solutions.
  2. Response Time - Find out how quickly they can respond to an attack or breach at your company.
  3. Support Services - If something goes wrong with their system, ensure they offer support services. For example, will they send someone over to fix the problem, or can you call them for help?
  4. Pricing Model - How does their pricing model work, and how does it compare to other providers?
  5. Client Base - Has this company ever worked for anyone like your company before? Would that give them an advantage in knowing your systems better than a new provider?
  6. Security Certifications - Make sure your provider has certifications that prove they know what they are doing, such as ISO 27001, SAS 70, or SSAE 16 SOC 1 and SOC 2.
  7. Expertise - Does your potential service provider have a strong team and proven experience in providing security services to companies like yours?
  8. References - Ask for references from current clients that have used their services and how they felt about them. In addition, make sure they are willing to work with you on a trial period where they provide some of their services without charging you any money. Doing this will allow you to see if it's a good fit before signing a contract.

Questions To Ask Before Choosing a Cybersecurity Outsourcing Agency

Choosing the right cybersecurity outsourcing agency for your business is a crucial decision. Here are some questions to ask before you make your final choice:

  1. What is your company's security policy?
  2. How do you handle data breach notifications?
  3. Are there any limitations on what you can and cannot do?
  4. How long have you been in business?
  5. What is your employee turnover rate?
  6. Do you offer 24/7 tech support?
  7. Do you have your technology, or do you use third-party solutions?
  8. What kind of security certifications do your employees hold?
  9. How many clients do you currently serve?
  10. What is the average size of your clients' networks?
  11. How often do you conduct penetration testing on client systems?
  12. How much experience do you have in cyber risk management and mitigation?

Best Cybersecurity Agencies to Safeguard Your Business in 2022

1. IT Ninjas

  • Location: 3545 St John's Bluff Rd. Suite 341, Jacksonville, Florida 32224, United States
  • Average Hourly Rate: On inquiry.
  • Expertise: Web Design, Cybersecurity, IT, Managed Services, Cloud Consulting.

First founded in 2018, IT Ninjas built its foundation on the belief that everyone in every industry should have the opportunity to develop their business with the latest technology at their disposal.

Specializing in IT solutions and cybersecurity for small businesses, non-profits, government institutions and mid-sized businesses, IT Ninjas has 15+ years of experience in its field and has become a central agency in the heart of Silicon Valley (Headquartered in Jacksonville, FL).

Besides providing top-tier cyber solutions, IT Ninjas offers clients services such as cloud consulting, web design and managed services, making them an excellent choice for businesses looking to shield themselves from potential nefarious activity.

2. Healthy IT, Inc

  • Location: Location: 320 Carleton Ave, Ste 1700, Central Islip, New York 11722, United States
  • Average Hourly Rate: On inquiry.
  • Expertise: Cybersecurity, IoT, Managed Services, Cloud Consulting...

Healthy IT provides complete technology services for healthcare and dental practices, law firms, and small- to medium-sized general businesses in the Long Island/Metro NY area.

They specialize in network installation, software support, and turnkey solutions for their clients so that you can do what you do best as a business owner, while they take the burden of technology off your back.

With over 25 years of experience in healthcare, the agency has unique experience that they can leverage to help provide offices with complete integrated solutions that help drive the efficiency of their practices.

They also offer a "Thrilled Today Or You Don't Pay" 100% Money Back Guarantee for clients who are ever dissatisfied with any service for ANY reason.

3. USWired Inc.

  • Location: 310 W Hamilton Ave Suite 200, Campbell, California 95008, United States
  • Average Hourly Rate: On inquiry.
  • Expertise: Cybersecurity, IT, Managed Services, Cloud Consulting...

USWired is a leading provider of managed IT services and solutions for small to medium-sized businesses, large enterprises, and government entities in San Jose, the greater San Francisco Bay Area and throughout California.

Founded in 1996, USWired provides IT support, cloud services, and cybersecurity solutions. They uphold the highest standards in personalized, professional service to help clients make competent and confident decisions regarding their IT infrastructure.

Their mission is to provide clients with peace-of-mind in knowing that their IT infrastructures and employees are in the best possible hands 24/7, so that they can focus on running and growing their businesses.

4. Wattlecorp Cybersecurity Labs

  • Location: 39, NGEF Lane, 2nd Floor, Suite No.795, Indiranagar, Karnataka, Bengaluru, 560038, India
  • Average Hourly Rate: Inquire
  • Expertise: Cybersecurity, Managed Services

Founded in India in 2018, Wattlecorp Cybersecurity Labs specializes in vulnerability assessment and penetration testing (VAPT), which ensures that every vulnerability is addressed and your organization’s defenses are strengthened. They work with your in-house IT management team to assess your overall security posture.

The company also offers cybersecurity compliance consulting, server security hardening, an annual security program and a Security Operations Center that provides 24/7 monitoring. With these services, Wattlecorp ensures you can serve your customers with peace of mind, knowing that their and your business’s data and intellectual property are safe and protected.

Among Wattlecorp’s most notable clients are Tesla, Intel and Bentley.

5. The VP Techno Labs International

  • Location: 43 Devashish Park, College Road, Nadiad, 387001, India
  • Average Hourly Rate: $50/hr
  • Expertise: Cybersecurity, Penetration Testing, Managed Services, IT, Cloud Consulting…

The VP Techno Labs International is a multi-awarded, internationally acclaimed cybersecurity company from India dedicated to fighting cybersecurity risks that threaten clients’ revenue and reputation.

They provide security assessment and penetration testing with zero false positive SLAs and a money-back guarantee. Further, their services are backed by the proprietary Triple Shield DeReEN technology, which allows them to test digital assets without disrupting production or data.

The VP Techno Labs International sets itself apart with its cost-effective solutions, which are said to be 40% less costly and 70% more effective than other services.

6. WeSecureApp

  • Location: 9355 John W. Elliott Dr. Suite#25440, Frisco, Dallas, Texas TX 75033, United States
  • Average Hourly Rate: Inquire
  • Expertise: Cybersecurity, Software Development

WeSecureApp is a cybersecurity company that specializes in enterprise security and offers a vast array of security solutions and services. They are headquartered in Texas and have offshore centers in India, allowing them to serve over 150 firms worldwide.

WeSecureApp's team is composed of certified professionals who can work in various domains and industry sectors. They provide application, network, cloud and container security, as well as threat simulation and compliance. Their solutions also include managed security, DevSecOps, CloudSnoop and strategic security.

Their clients include L&T Smart World & Communication, Warba Bank, RedBus and Zoho Corporation.

7. EB Solution

  • Location: 45 Casmir Ct Unit 19, Concord, ON, Canada, Concord, L4K 4H5, Canada
  • Average Hourly Rate: Inquire
  • Expertise: Cybersecurity, IT, Microsoft SharePoint Consulting, ERP Consulting, CRM Consulting…

EB Solution is an IT company catering to small and large businesses in Toronto and Greater Toronto Area and other major cities in Canada and the US. The agency is armed with over a decade of industry experience and the latest technology to provide IT support.

In terms of cybersecurity, EB Solution provides advanced threat detection and protection, data leak prevention, Dark Web ID Credential Monitoring and security awareness training. They also offer network management, data backup, disaster recovery, business continuity, VoIP services, cloud technologies and more.

EB Solution has served clients in retail, accounting, law, manufacturing and transportation, among others.

8. BlockApex

  • Location: Plot 191-Q, Block 2 PECHS, Karachi, Karachi, 75400, Pakistan
  • Average Hourly Rate: $180/hr
  • Expertise: Cybersecurity, Penetration Testing, Blockchain Development

BlockApex is a web security agency that specializes in the web 3.0 ecosystem. Their scalable solutions provide a robust defense against exploits and asset loss for systems built in web3.

The agency's on-chain services include blockchain quality assurance, smart contract auditing and tokenomics/financial model optimization. Off the chain, BlockApex also offers DApp security and infrastructure testing, cloud security and monitoring and advanced adversary simulations.

Dafi, Unipilot, Spin Finance, BlockZero and Coinstore are some of the agency’s clients.

9. Nerds Support Inc.

  • Location: 4155 SW 130 Ave Suite 103, Miami, Florida 33175, United States
  • Average Hourly Rate: Inquire
  • Expertise: Cybersecurity, IT, Managed Services, Cloud Consulting, Internet of Things…

Miami-based Nerds Support has been a fixture in the industry since 2004, offering award-winning services in IT and cybersecurity.

Their cybersecurity services include email security, simplified archiving, data compliance and penetration testing. Notably, the agency is certified in the SOC 2 compliance regulatory standard, and its engineering team also has exclusive Microsoft, Citrix, and VMware certifications.

Nerds Support caters to small and medium-sized businesses in the US and worldwide. Their clients are spread across different industries, including finance, accounting, transport and manufacturing.

Outsourcing Cybersecurity: Final Thoughts

In today's digital world, no organization can remain unaffected by cyberattacks. Given this scenario, businesses must focus on strengthening their cyber security defenses.

Security is a primary concern for companies that outsource. When you outsource your business processes, you also outsource the risks related to that process.

It means you trust another person or company to handle sensitive data on your behalf.

Protecting your business's cybersecurity can be a full-time job, so many small and medium-sized businesses outsource the task to professional security companies instead of trying to handle it in-house.

Keep these essential things in mind before signing on with an external company to handle your cybersecurity needs. After all, one of the best ways to avoid cyberattacks is by placing your security in trustworthy hands.

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