By Chip Miceli
President and CEO, Pulse Technology
Why the right IT protection matters
Protecting a company’s infrastructure and network from cyber attacks is essential to the success and well-being of every business.
Security Magazine reports that there are over 2200 cyber attacks every day, or one every 39 seconds.
Research also shows that 43% of all cyber attacks target smaller businesses, and that 60% of businesses which experience a significant data loss due to a cyber attack go out of business within six months.
Companies which suffer data breaches can encounter a multitude of problems in addition to down time and loss of business, including significant liability and legal issues if sensitive data falls into the wrong hands – such as Social Security numbers, or financial and health information.
In short, companies that do not have the very best IT protection for their businesses operate at their own peril. Get your free security scan here
How Pulse Technology entered the IT business
If your data is compromised, you can’t run your business. We have worked in the technology space for many years and have watched as the challenges of keeping operating systems up and safely running have increased. We know how important the role of an MSP (Managed Services Provider) or IT partner is in keeping your network protected. That is why we are so heavily invested in providing IT or Managed Services protection for our customers throughout our three-state region and beyond.
Those of you who have known us for a while may remember that we didn’t begin as "an IT company.” In fact, when this company first opened its doors in 1955 under the name Des Plaines Office Equipment, we sold typewriters, calculators and some office furniture. In those days, “IT services” wasn’t a topic on anyone’s radar screen. From our earliest days, though, we have expanded our core services by listening carefully to customer needs, studying industry trends, and working to do everything we can to meet the needs of the customers we serve. And things have changed a lot over the decades! For many years, our main offering was Managed Print Services (MPS). That is the practice of fleet management of copiers and printers to help customers achieve efficiencies in document generation. The right mix of copiers, printers and technology can help achieve the lowest possible per-page cost of generating documents.
Managed Print Services remains one of our core offerings, but we saw the expansion into IT as a logical extension of what we already offered. The technology required to analyze fleet management and workflow is sophisticated, so we were already very committed to technology. And in our analysis of how companies handled their workflow, we saw that a number of businesses with some sort of internal IT presence didn’t always utilize their team to its fullest extent – or lacked the resources to handle everything that came their way. Some companies would keep their IT person on as “the repair person” who would attempt to fix copiers, fax machines and printers when needed, thus taking them away from their primary function.
We further saw that companies' internal IT people, whether part-time or full-time, could find it difficult to keep up with the ever-increasing demands of staying ahead of the latest anti-virus updates and training, while “putting out fires” that happened at their office.
We saw a need and an opportunity to build out our IT offerings; we invested in our team of technicians, built out a state-of-the-art Network Operating Center (NOC), committed to ongoing training for our technicians, and began offering remote network monitoring for our customers’ networks. Remote monitoring, 24/7, enables our team to spot potential situations on a network before they become a problem. We take a highly pro-active approach toward network protection, and our IT Managed Services offering has become a significant part of our business offerings to customers.
Should you as a customer use an internal IT person? Or outsource to an MSP partner?
Approximately one-third of all businesses outsource their IT to a Managed Service Provider (MSP). Others may rely upon an internal IT team or, most often, a single employee.
Insurance provider Embroker quotes Accenture’s Cost of Cybercrime Study which shows that while 43% of cyber attacks are aimed at small businesses, only 14% are prepared to defend themselves. Another statistic is that 45% of the businesses surveyed say that their processes are ineffective at mitigating attacks.
Only 14% of small businesses are prepared to defend themselves
The decision for business owners considering the best way to handle their ongoing IT issues, is whether to do so internally or outsource their needs to a trusted Managed Services Provider (MSP) partner.
Here are a few challenges that may arise for businesses handling their IT needs internally.
- Staffing concerns: Do you have enough IT staff to handle the company’s ongoing issues? Are your IT experts re-directing their efforts to handle small problems (such as repairing a copier or printer)? Have you been able to find the right IT talent in the marketplace? How much time does it take to on-board and train new team members?
- Another staffing consideration: If your company has only one or two people as part of the IT staff, what happens to your business if one or both of them leave for another position? How do you function while you are looking to replace a person who has left?
- Is the cost of investing in new cybersecurty infrastructure something that makes you hesitant to make the move?
- Do you have ongoing access to the latest software updates, employee training methods, and cyber threat information?
The advantages of working with a Managed Services Provider (MSP) partner include:
- Outsourcing enables you as a business owner to focus on your core business, rather than trying to juggle IT and other matters at the same time
- Outsourcing affords access to the latest expertise –your MSP partner will have the necessary updates, information on latest threats, and you’ll have a team of experts so that you will never have gaps in coverage
- Outsourcing can result in Increased efficiency and less “down time”
- Reduced costs: Using an outsourced partner can mean you avoid the high costs of hiring and training in-house staff, and working with an outside partner may help you avoid the need to purchase expensive software – and the ability to accurately forecast IT expenses
- Reduced risks to your infrastructure
- Improved security
What’s right for you?
It’s worth a conversation to find out! We take the safety of your networks and your data very seriously. If you are considering outsourcing your Managed Services needs, or even just want to have a preliminary discussion, please give us a call at 888-357-4277. And we also invite you to download our free eBook “The Ultimate Guide: Cybersecurity for Business.”