Washington, DC businesses regularly come to us with the question, “Isn’t intrusion detection something only the military needs?”. This is a fair question. In 2020, there are still many small- to mid-sized businesses (SMBs) that claim they’ve never experienced a cyberattack. But just because you haven’t felt a cyberattack doesn’t mean you’ve never been exposed to one.
Cybercriminals are opportunists, and chances are, they are just biding their time to strike at the right moment. They usually use a combination of attacks to find system weaknesses to exploit. That is why you need a powerful security tool like intrusion detection. Intrusion detection systems (IDSs) reveal what those specific attacks are and improve your system visibility, so you can properly safeguard the most vulnerable parts of your IT system.
Managed IDS takes that benefit a step further by removing the burden of curating attacks from the user. This is because automated IDSs identify every single anomaly, which often includes white hat system tests, small developer bugs, and the like. A managed IDS provider is as thorough as an automated IDS, but with one distinct benefit: the ability to countercheck which attacks are legitimate and which ones can be ignored. Moreover, managed IDS will address the following issues:
Security blind spots
Every system has a blind spot, and it is often through those where breaches happen. Security gaps typically occur when, for example, software, applications, and devices do not receive updates and patches at the same time. A managed IDS provider will help you pinpoint those gaps before anything devastating can occur; they’ll even address the issue before informing you.
IDSs are a great way for you to react and respond to threats, but they can’t keep unwanted traffic from entering your system on their own. Think of IDS as a radar system and cyberattacks as enemy missiles. The radar can’t block the missiles, but it’ll give its security partner time to activate protective systems before the missiles strike.
Data storage and transfer regulations
With sweeping views of every piece of information that runs through your system, you’ll have a clearer understanding of whether protocols are followed and standards are met.
You can also use the IDS logs as documentation of your efforts to meet regulations. It’s a great way to market your brand to prospective clients, as it sets your standard practices above many competitors. You can also use it to assure your investors and current customers that your business is not taking any chances with private information.
It’s good to have a broad spectrum of cyber protection, but it pays to know your system's cyberattack history. This allows you to identify its weakest points so you can bolster them with ample protection. With an IDS, you’ll be able to qualify and quantify the attacks your system experiences.
For instance, if your system gets a lot of spam-based attacks, you’ll know to beef up your email filters and firewall. If your system gets a lot of brute force attacks, you’ll know to deploy an anti-doxxing service. Identifying attacks will help you devise a response that will immediately address the attacks; it will also help in figuring out whether certain measures can be throttled down to help you save costs.
Manual system checks
System checks are tedious and time-consuming if done manually. However, neglecting to do them also heightens the risks of a breach. Automation is the natural solution, but that would require you to spend time reconfiguring your system and installing relevant software.
Instead of overhauling your system, look into how you can hit two needs with one service. For instance, IDS logs can double as system check logs. And because they are a managed service provided by an IT consultant, they won’t come at the expense of your in-house staff’s time. So, you get cyber protection and a system check without spending extra.
Overworked IT staff
Small businesses tend to have tiny IT departments, while some don’t have one at all. This results in ad hoc work roles fulfilled by whoever is available and “knowledgeable enough” to do so. This means your employees end up working on tasks outside of their job descriptions — something that isn’t good for employee morale, not to mention being poor practice as far as system security goes.
Managed IDS isn’t just an automated scanning system; it’s a powerful tool that beefs up the capabilities of your security systems. Here at outsourceIT, we pair up automation with human expertise, so you get the best of both worlds. You’ll get 24/7/365 coverage, but you won’t need to respond to every single alert. That’ll free you and your staff up for your core business needs.