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IT Support with a Cyber Security Focus – How Outsourcing Cyber Security Can Benefit Your Business

As we’ve discussed previously, cybercrime is on the rise, and businesses face greater challenges in minimising cyber risks than ever before. One of the greatest difficulties businesses face, particularly SMEs, is allocating the time and resources to activities that are vital to maintaining a robust cyber security posture.

Unfortunately, investing in a comprehensive cyber security strategy is no longer optional: it’s a strategic necessity. The financial, reputational, and legal fallout from a data breach can decimate a small business’s viability. In fact, a survey by the US National Cyber Security Alliance found that 60% of small companies cease trading within 6 months following a cyber breach incident.

The deteriorating threat picture, combined with increasing data protection obligations, has seen many SMEs turn to external cyber security service providers. These providers offer businesses on-demand access to high-level cyber security expertise, access to the latest security platforms, round-the-clock coverage, and a greater scope of protection than would be cost-viable to implement internally.


Virtual IT – IT Support and Cyber Security Services for Businesses Across London and the Southeast

Virtual IT is a comprehensive IT service provider, committed to helping businesses across London, Essex, Sussex, Bedfordshire, and the wider Southeast secure their digital assets and work productively using the best tech solutions. In this article, we want to explain the benefits of partnering with a cyber security focused IT provider, and provide tips on what you should look for in a committed cyber security partner.


Strong Cyber Security Has Never Been More Vital, Here’s Why…

The Rise of Ransomware: Ransomware remains one of the most pressing cyber threats, both globally, and here in the UK. In 2021, the global incidence of ransomware attacks increased by 150%, and ransom payment demands increased threefold, according to a report by Group-IB. Ransomware criminality is becoming more targeted, sophisticated, and financially harmful for those affected, with operational disruption and legal repercussions just some of the additional complications.


The Prevalence of Phishing: Phishing attacks continue to be the greatest attributing factor in data breaches, with 89% of businesses detecting cybercrime identifying at least one phishing attack, according to the Cyber Security breaches Survey 2023. These ubiquitous attacks capitalise on a lack of security awareness, duping employees into disclosing sensitive information, making payments, or granting access to critical systems.


The Growth in Supply Chain Attacks: Supply chain attacks – which involve an attacker infiltrating less secure elements in a organisation’s software or hardware supply chain – are one of the fastest growing cyber threat vectors. By 2025, it’s predicted that 45% of organisations globally will have experienced attacks originating from their software supply chains: a threefold increase from 2021. Supply chain infiltration allows attackers to penetrate multiple organisations through a single point of vulnerability, resulting in attacks of unprecedented scale and impact.


Cloud Security Threats: The complex, distributed nature of the modern IT system has given rise to new risks that organisations must be proactive in addressing. Cloud system misconfigurations, inadequate change control, and insufficient access management can expose businesses to data breaches. Cloud data breaches are notable for being particularly costly and are only likely to increase as businesses move more IT services to the Cloud.


Growing Demands from Regulators: Although the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has been in effect since 2018, it represents a significant shift in how organisations handle and secure the data they hold. GDPR, along with similar regulations worldwide, has sharpened the focus of business leaders on the critical importance of cyber security. The regulation underscores the necessity of robust data protection measures, highlighting that substantial fines can be levied for non-compliance and failures in adequately safeguarding data against cyber threats.


The Benefits of Outsourcing Cyber Security

An external cyber security partner can help your business overcome these evolving challenges, and support you in developing a robust security posture that defends the interests of you and your customers. By outsourcing cyber security functions to a committed partner, you can expect to realise the following benefits:


Reduced Costs

Outsourcing cyber security allows you to take advantage of economies of scale, giving you access to skilled specialists, cutting-edge security tools, and continuous monitoring at a fraction of the cost of implementing such capabilities internally. Tap into high-level cyber security expertise as and when you need it, and avoid the enormous salary overheads that come with building a dedicated security operations team.


Greater Depth of Experience

A cyber security service provider will have vast experience providing threat protection solutions and incident response across a broad range of digital scenarios. This gives them the experience necessary to tailor solutions around the intricacies of your IT system, and take informed, decisive action against any threats that appear in your environment. This depth of experience can be very difficult to achieve in an internal cyber security function.


Better Threat Intelligence

Mature cyber security service providers typically leverage multiple threat intelligence data sets, and will be well informed of the latest developments in the cyber threat landscape. This positions them to offer deeper insights into threats both new and old and offer better strategic guidance on how your business should manage the cyber risks it faces.


Round-the-Clock Active Threat Monitoring

For many SMEs, operating a 24/7 security operations centre is simply cost prohibitive. Outsourcing to an external provider gives you cost-efficient access to continuous monitoring, ensuring that threats are detected and remediated in real-time across your digital systems.


What to Look for in a Cyber Security Service Provider

Choosing a cyber security provider is a big decision. You need a committed external partner that’s aligned with your security needs and organisational goals, and willing to tailor their offering around the risk circumstances of your businesses. Here are some key qualities to look out for:


Multi-layered Defences: Today’s hostile threat terrain demands the application of robust, multi-layered protections. Look for a provider that can offer every element required for a robust security posture, including endpoint and network security, application security, awareness training, data loss prevention measures, proactive monitoring and maintenance, and cyber risk assessments.


Expertise and Experience: Look for a provider that treats cyber security as a priority, rather than supplementary afterthought. Finding a provider with experience serving your industry can be advantageous, as they’ll be able to help you achieve compliance with industry regulations, and overcome sector-specific security challenges.


Customisable Solutions: You need a provider that’s willing to tailor their solutions and services around the quirks and unique circumstances of your business. The one-size-fits all approach doesn’t work in cyber security.


Advanced Response Capabilities: Look for a provider that can offer real-time threat response, to contain live threats that appear in your IT system and prevent further escalation. 24/7 monitoring/support and SOC (Security Operations Centre) services will ensure you have the real-time threat response you need to neutralise threats quickly and decisively.


Cost-Efficiency and Scalability:  Partnering with a cyber security provider can transform significant capital expenses into manageable operational costs. Opt for a provider that delivers value by customising contracts to fit the scale and scope of services your organisation requires.


In Summary

In the context of a worsening cyber threat climate, businesses across all sectors are under pressure to mount a robust response against cyber threats. If you’re concerned about the cyber risks facing your business, or you want the peace of mind of a dedicated security team watching over your systems 24/7, then consider outsourcing your security to a committed cyber security provider.


Virtual IT – Strategic Cyber Security that Prioritises Your Most Critical Digital Assets

The essentials cyber security suite from Virtual IT is the ultimate digital defence toolkit, offering everything your business needs for effective and complete protection against online threats and data loss risks. In addition to robust threat mitigations that operate environment-wide, our multi-layered approach applies additional safeguards around your critical systems and sensitive data assets. Overlapping defences seal vulnerabilities against attack, reinforcing your operationally critical infrastructure, and safeguarding information against malicious exfiltration and unsanctioned access.

We help organisations across London, Essex, Bedfordshire, Sussex, and the wider Southeast region develop and maintain a robust security posture, supporting their success through improved cyber resilience.

Contact us today, to discover how Virtual IT can be your trusted cyber defence partner.

Secure your business with outsourced cyber security