Most outsourced IT support companies can provide multiple services thereby allowing a company to focus on its business. It is important to understand what your outsourced IT company is or is not providing, especially with respect to security monitoring, threat detection, incident response, and business continuity and backup. Before hiring an outside contractor or company to provide IT services, you should first determine how much information you are comfortable providing to the IT resource. By outsourcing your information technology tasks, you are hiring third-party contractors or companies to perform the IT work as opposed to having the IT tasks done in-office. Many IT services require that you provide sensitive information pertaining to your business’s security and data, so you should also get a clear idea of how the IT resource will protect your information. You may also find that you lose a portion or much of the operational control your company has over certain business functions. Before outsourcing, it’s important to determine how much control and governance you want to maintain regarding the operations you will be outsourcing and then make this clear with the company or contractor you hire. You should get this in writing and regularly make sure that the IT support company is upholding its promise. This ensures that your expectations, as well as the responsibilities and roles that you expect from the IT resource, are understood.

Managed Services:

If you’re spending your time trying to fix IT issues, then you’re not concentrating on growing your business, meeting your goals, and keeping your customers happy. Your outsourced IT vendor may have different service levels that can be provided, which can include monitoring, troubleshooting, as well as working with other vendors such as printer companies and internet providers. Managed services should include 24/7 year-round monitoring, patch management, managed enterprise anti-virus, managed malware protection, endpoint security policies, remote help desk, and define service level agreements.

Cybersecurity Monitoring and Mitigation:

Protecting your business and your employees is no longer an option. The requires ensuring data is properly backed up, disaster recovery and business continuity plans are in place, networks are kept secure to reduce the threat from hackers, viruses, and malware. Many businesses are subject to various regulatory requirements such as HIPAA and your outsourced provider should be ensuring your network operations meet those regulations. Implementing a comprehensive, proactive, 360-degree approach to your IT operations can include:

Business Continuity & Backup:

Businesses need to be able to recover data quickly in the event of a disaster to keep downtime to an absolute minimum. This requires a data backup solution and a comprehensive business continuity plan that uses state-of-the-art software and robust infrastructure to provide your business with an enterprise-class online computer backup service that ensures you can access files quickly and can get you up and running quickly after any type of service outage. In the past, many backup and recovery plans focused on natural disasters. With ransomware on the rise, backups have helped companies recover their business-critical information allowing their business to continue to operate and avoid paying to get their data back. The pandemic though presented businesses with new challenges with business continuity such as the ability of employees to work remotely, and the ability of businesses to obtain computer equipment due to supply-chain issues.

Cloud Service:

Recent cyber-attacks have been able to happen due to outdated servers that are hosted on premises. Cloud technology allows you to transfer the physical aspects of your IT, along with their management and maintenance, such that they are delivered electronically through the internet, and charged on a pay-as-you-go pricing structure. Comprehensive solutions allow you to harness the very best of the cloud in order to enhance communication, collaboration and productivity right across your business. Such service can include Office 365, Hosted Exchange, Hosted VoIP, and Secure File Sharing

Keeping up with the ever-changing cyber threats is a full-time job. Because of the complexities and costs of cybersecurity management, many choose to use external specialists with a proven track record in the field — either as a fully outsourced function or in a hybrid model. This can be accomplished by ensuring your outsourced IT company is properly managing your cybersecurity protocols. Many outsourced IT service providers have a team of technical staff who are experienced in the various threats as they are consistently working with other businesses. Their staff have the necessary qualifications and certifications who fully understand the security solutions enabling them to implement the right software products so that they can monitor your security. This is critical to ensure your company can operate.

Kevin Urso, President
Connected Technology
(631) 724-6504
kurso@connectedtechnology.com