Outsourcing Cybersecurity vs. Hiring Internally—What’s Right For Your Business?

Cybercrime is growing at an unprecedented rate, but unfortunately, only a small number of companies can afford an internal security team that has the tools and expertise required to defend against cybercrime. How can a company decide between hiring security experts internally or outsourcing cybersecurity? Let’s dissect some of the myths about outsourcing versus hiring an in-house team.

 

Myth: Outsourcing cybersecurity costs a fortune; it’s cheaper to go in-house.

 

Fact: The cost of outsourcing is typically determined by the number of computers and devices within an organization. For example, the outsourcing cost for an organization with a 250-user network might be an average of $75K annually. If you hired an internal team of 4-5 experts, along with the necessary tools to manage the same 250-user network, the annual cost would be well over $250K—that is, if the security experts can even be located.

 

According to Michael Brown, former CEO of leading security software vendor Symantec, “the demand for the [cybersecurity] workforce is expected to rise to 6 million [globally] by 2019, with a projected shortfall of 1.5 million.” Even if you are able to successfully recruit a security specialist, the cost can be prohibitive. By outsourcing your cybersecurity needs, the costs associated with obtaining and retaining security talent become the sole responsibility of the service provider, not your organization.

 

Myth: Outsourcing cybersecurity replaces our IT Team.

 

Fact: A Managed Security Service Provider (MSSP) works to complement a business’ IT department, not replace it. Cybercriminals don’t work 9-to-5 business hours; they’re looking for vulnerabilities in business systems, which are typically found after hours or during weekends and holidays. Most MSSPs offer 24/7/365 “eyes on glass” monitoring to detect any suspicious activity on the network, allowing your IT team to rest easy after the workday.

 

Myth: Outsourcing cybersecurity puts sensitive data at risk.

 

Fact: In a managed security deal, the organization shares information security risk and business risk with the MSSP. Such deals provide access to a range of security services as well as to skilled staff whose full-time job is security. Richard Hollis of the ISACA government and regulatory advocacy subcommittee said he would not hesitate to outsource even the most sensitive of IT security functions, as long as there are solid service level agreements in place that clearly detail legal liability, responsibilities, and consequences. “The key is to implement effective quality control measures on the service provider’s deliverables,” he stated.

 

Freedom Security Alliance

We’re not saying outsourcing cybersecurity is the best solution for all businesses, but if you carefully weigh the advantages of outsourcing some or all of your cybersecurity activities, you may find that using an MSSP like Freedom Security Alliance decreases both the cost and risk to your organization.

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