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Five ways to engage managed services for cybersecurity

How managed services can help drive business outcomes

The variety, velocity, and the impact from cyber threats that many organizations face today is growing exponentially. Constantly changing regulations and requirements adds even more complexity. The explosion of data, expansion of the cloud, and crypto/blockchain are just a few examples of the new frontier – all contributing to an ever-deepening gap of already overworked cyber teams. And yet with a greater emphasis today for an effective and hyper speed response to threats, companies continue to struggle with lack of skilled practitioners.

So, how do you respond to drive better outcomes?

Many organizations are tapping managed services providers to help turn effort into outcomes. In a recent HFS Research Cybersecurity Pulse, 81 percent said the lack of qualified cyber professionals is driving their increased use of managed services in areas like network security, threat intelligence and threat hunting.

In fact, according to the KPMG and HFS Managed Services Outlook, a global survey of 800 executives, 80 percent of organizations plan to increase their use of managed services for information technology and cybersecurity over the next two years and cybersecurity is one of the areas where respondents expect managed services to deliver the most value. Already, over 40 percent of respondents use managed services for more than half of their organization’s cybersecurity activities.

To effectively drive transformation through managed services, CISOs must look beyond ‘table stakes’ and should seek out trusted partners who bring new thinking on security controls and networking, along with big data analytics for better context, detection and rapid response.

Here are five areas where a modern managed services provider can help close the cybersecurity gaps:


Create a holistic view of the threat landscape

The speed of technology can create unseen compromises. Providers should offer proactive, hypothesis-driven hunting; they should have a deep understanding of on-premises, cloud and hybrid environments; they should provide services like enhanced intelligence to understand an adversary’s motives and intent.  Additionally, seek a provider who will take responsibility for fine tuning your technology.  


Make cybersecurity a transformation forethought

In many enterprises, profit tends to outweigh security. But a savvy managed services provider can help you establish your SOC as a business enabler and accelerator, not a blocker. These providers can help you achieve the right balance between fast development and high security.


Offer a collaborative relationship with a single-pane view.

Your cyber managed services partner should be that: a partner in the transformation journey who provides appropriate metrics and analysis to drive business decisions—all presented in a clear dashboard that’s accessible by both parties. That results in one source of cybersecurity truth. 


Deliver predictable costs and outcomes

Traditional cyber defence often focuses on reactive threat analysis, meaning variable costs and outcomes. But leading providers focus on delivering outcomes in a subscription-based offer with predictable costs—with the option to flex up or down to meet fast-changing needs. 

Importantly, it should not be a one-size-fits-all solution package. Your provider should offer a security model that’s tailored to your business strategy, operations and environment. Leading providers also deliver predictable, measurable outcomes that relate to enterprise transformation—such as accelerated innovation, brand trust and operational resilience—while giving the Chief information security officer (CISO) a seat at the table. 


Have deep knowledge of your industry

To drive enterprise-wide outcomes, providers should be experts not only in cybersecurity but also in business and your industry. Seek a managed services provider who brings robust industry expertise to your cybersecurity challenges. 


1. Source: HFS Research, Cybersecurity Pulse, October 2021

2. Source: KPMG Managed Services and HFS Managed Services Outlook 2022 (August 2022)

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Rajesh Ahuja

Managing Director, Advisory, Cyber Managed Services

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Ron Walker
Managed Services US Leader, Advisory, KPMG US

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