A managed service provider (MSP) is an organization that effectively and efficiently remotely handles a company’s IT infrastructure and / or end-user networks, usually on a semi-automatic and/or proactive basis. A typical Microsoft SQL Server database as an example, is maintained by an MS office using Microsoft Exchange Server. The development of M SPs was prompted by the emergence of software as a service (SaaS) applications offering remote access to hosted software. The popularity of SaaS applications led to the development of management systems for IT infrastructures such as MSPs. These systems have many features common to enterprise-level hosting and are used worldwide by companies who want to provide IT support at minimal cost.
An advantage of managed service providers is that they can provide fast delivery of IT solutions to their clients. Another advantage is that they can offer better services than traditional software or hardware vendors. However, there are disadvantages to the managed services industry. These include high costs and workload, since they need to maintain and manage servers, network, and devices, not to mention security concerns.
One of the disadvantages of an MSPS is its lack of flexibility compared to remote monitoring services. It cannot adjust to changes in the time zone. It has no ability to detect or anticipate potential threats. Also, a managed service provider can only provide proactive monitoring services, which does not include any sort of alert management. And, although a managed security provider can provide advanced alerting and security functions, it lacks real-time incident detection and response.
Microsoft SQL Server Professional Services provided by managed service providers has a better subscription model compared to an on premise MSSP. With an on premise MSSP, an organization’s entire network is required to subscribe to the service. Although this is more costly compared to subscriptions offered by MSPSs, on premise MSSPs have the added advantage of being directly managed by Microsoft. With an on premise MSSP, an organization’s vulnerabilities can be detected quickly and resolved before it spreads into the enterprise.
On the other hand, MSSPs allow for greater flexibility when it comes to gaining access to the cyber threats. With MSSPs, an organization can gain access to the latest threats as soon as they become public. An example of this is the Stuxnet worm that was released in April of 2021. The worm infected an oil company and spread rapidly throughout the Middle East.
With an on-premise MSPS, on the other hand, vulnerabilities are detected long before they spread into the enterprise. MSSP software also has a more streamlined interface that makes it easy for network administrators to determine which security risks require the most attention. With the threat of Stuxnet, the threat management of a managed service provider was the responsibility of the entire organization. By having managed software licenses, network security can be dealt with easily.
In addition, the infrastructure is less vulnerable to cyber attacks. An organization can invest in the latest infrastructure without having to update its software license every year. As a result, there is a decreased need for software licensing. This will keep the cost of the entire infrastructure down, especially as there is no need to invest in expensive countermeasures to prevent the malware from spreading into the enterprise. Since the Stuxnet worm demonstrated how quickly a simple virus can spread between routers, Managed Service Provider can reduce the threat to a significant level because of proactive security measures.
With these advantages, it is not surprising that the Stuxnet worm exploited vulnerabilities found in a Microsoft-based platform. However, the recent threat to Managed Service Provider platforms was not the worm. Instead, it was a group of viruses known as “rogue antivirus” programs. They gained access to IT systems through compromised websites and were able to spread their software throughout the enterprise by using various techniques. Fortunately, a number of proactive steps have been developed to address these threats, which show that Managed Service Providers are ahead of the curve in terms of security technology.