Make no mistake about it: Cybercrime is becoming more complex and more frequent, and SMBs are looking outside their organizations for help dealing with evolving threats. This is a gigantic opportunity for MSPs as long as they understand two things: the current state and emerging trends of the cybersecurity landscape and what tools they can use to combat it.
To start, let’s take a look at the cybersecurity landscape, and analyze the threats, trends, and opportunities.
Protecting SMBs From Ransomware Attacks
Cybercriminals are increasingly targeting SMBs. In 2021, 43% of all cyberattacks were against small businesses. This is problematic because roughly 60% of SMBs go out of business in six months following an attack. Because so many SMBs don’t have the resources to support an internal IT and data security operation, many look to MSPs to prove the level of protection they need.
The most common threat is ransomware, which was reported by 70% of MSPs in Datto’s most recent Global State of the Channel Ransomware Report. So, how do MSPs combat ransomware threats? They have to be proficient in three areas.
Prevention — Obviously, succeeding in this phase is what every MSP hopes to do: eliminate the threat of an attack in the first place. Although there is no airtight approach to do this, there are measures MSPs can take to help keep their SMB clients from becoming ransomware victims. This includes the use of detection or antivirus tools or enabling automated patch management to fix potential vulnerabilities as soon as they are discovered.
Detection — Despite the MSPs best efforts, ransomware can still get through the protection layer. That’s why there should be measures in place to identify when ransomware is present, rather than assuming an attack will never be successful. The earlier it is detected, the earlier actions can take place to eliminate it.
Response — When ransomware is detected, responding to the attack and eliminating it must be done with the utmost efficiency. MSPs must be prepared to act by taking the following steps:
- Scan networks for confirmation of an attack unfolding.
- Identify the infected computers and isolate them from the rest of the network.
- Secure all backup data or backup systems immediately.
MSPs that are able to optimize ransomware prevention, while also detecting and quickly responding to attacks that are successful, can leave a tremendous impact on their clients and the industry as a whole. Ransomware attacks were estimated to cost roughly $20 billion in 2021, and the MSPs that are able to save their clients from suffering those financial damages can help prevent them from succumbing to closures. MSPs’ efforts in this area will go a long way toward strengthening their reputation as a security service provider and can leverage that to win more business in this year.
Now that we have a better understanding of the threat of ransomware, what MSPs need to do to combat it, and what they can gain from successfully doing so, let’s take a look at how MSPs can help prevent, detect, and eliminate ransomware.
Finding The Right Tools To Combat Ransomware
SMBs entrust MSPs with access to critical systems and data. The payoff is that they feel protected because the MSP will be able to act swiftly and effectively when a threat arises. MSPs need to reward that trust by arming themselves with tools that will facilitate quick and decisive action. For example, remote monitoring and management (RMM) tools provide MSPs with access to their clients’ endpoints so they can keep them secure, patched, and operational. Datto RMM does this on an incredible scale in a secure, cloud-based environment. With automated patching, MSPs can leverage Datto RMM to proactively fix any vulnerabilities before they are attacked, helping optimize all ransomware prevention efforts.
But, again, the idea is to always be prepared in case ransomware attacks are successful. Datto RMM also takes the next step on ransomware defense by including native ransomware detection, which monitors for crypto-ransomware and attempts to kill the virus to help reduce the impact of an attack. Users get alerts at the first detection of crypto-ransomware and automatically isolate impacted devices.
The ability to detect ransomware immediately enables the MSP to execute an action plan sooner rather than later. As ransomware infects systems it can cause extensive damage, which as we have established, may prove too costly for many SMBs to overcome. Ransomware detection is a surefire way to maintain damage control, keep clients operating, and continue revenue streams for MSPs.
Of course, no ransomware response plan is complete without systems in place to protect the most vital company resource — its data. Backing up data regularly can mitigate the risk of downtime when a ransomware attack is success-ful, but the system must be secure and reliable.
Datto SIRIS is designed to protect physical, virtual, and cloud infrastructures and data. With Datto SIRIS, data is well protected and easily accessible so it can be recovered rapidly when needed. SIRIS also detects ransomware within backups, saving time when locating the last clean system restore point.
Leveraging Security Services To Grow Your Business
In Datto’s Global State of the MSP Report, MSPs shared what challenges they will be focused on in the new year. Un-surprisingly, most focused on security on some level, whether that be securing endpoints, protecting data, or under-standing just how to be better against the threat of ransomware. They also told us that they are focused on sales and marketing, particularly as it relates to tools that will help them hit their growth goals in 2022.
As we have previously mentioned, all SMBs share a growing concern over security, and it is a business opportunity for MSPs. Those who understand the state of the security landscape and are able to quickly adapt as that landscape changes will end up winning in the end. But to be effective in doing that, MSPs must arm themselves with the tools that allow them to be agile so they can continuously meet their clients’ ever-changing needs.
Security threats will never go away — they can only be kept at bay. With the right partner, MSPs can do this effectively, protect their clients, and discover new levels of success.