What are the Differences Between an MSP & MSSP?

The world & businesses are now more dependent on modern technology than ever. From logistics and supply chain, bookkeeping, or managing finances-almost everything now has an online alternative that requires cyber security. So, companies should have a dedicated IT team or Managed IT Services Provider to ensure smooth transactions between the business and the customers. But, not all companies can afford a dedicated IT department. Small and medium businesses opt for outsourcing the services they need because it is more cost-efficient. Also, other sectors such as finance and healthcare choose to hire outside parties to leave their IT needs to the experts. It is essential to note that the interaction between the company and users is not the only priority, but also protecting your business’s data from risks and threats. Having MSP or MSSP partner with your company will deliver positive impacts to your business. But what are the differences between the two, and how can you determine which kind of services would best suit your business?

What is an MSP and MSSP?

MSP stands for Managed Service Provider, and MSSP stands for Managed Security Service Provider. These two are third-party professional services that can provide technical support from a remote location. Companies must manage their cybersecurity, both internally and externally, through professional help. Whether your business needs an IT co-management staff, a relatively cheaper way to have an IT team, or the expertise to manage your company’s IT system, you can get support from an MSP or MSSP, depending on your needs.

Managed Service Provider (MSP)

You should consider partnering with an MSP if you encounter a problem with your business’ technology. They can provide the service to fit your needs, either from remote support or a software-as-a-service (SaaS) option. The importance of having a reputable MSP is that you have the right people that can manage, safeguard, and maintain your company’s overall IT needs. The services an MSP can provide ranges from:
  • Application Management
  • Backup Management and Security
  • Business VoIP Phone Services
  • Cloud Services Management
  • Data Loss Prevention
  • Database Management
  • IT Administration

Managed Security Service Provider (MSSP)

MSSP’s can provide the best cybersecurity for your data needs. It gives your company’s data a knowledgeable team that can defend and protect against data breaches, leaks, malware and ransomware. Protection and encryption are adjustable for additional security. It will help secure your business, not only from outside eyes, but also from internal data access by employees. A trusted MSSP also complies with security and privacy compliance, regulations, and laws, such as SOC 2, HIPAA, ISO, and PCI DSS. An MSSP can offer services such as:
  • Anti-virus
  • Data Loss Prevention
  • Incident Management and Response
  • Network monitoring
  • Regulatory Compliance
  • Risk Assessments
  • VPN Management

The Difference between an MSP and MSSP

At first glance, you can identify the difference between the two – the extra word Security in MSSP. Hence, the general difference between them is that the MSSP focuses on security, while MSP is more on the IT administration of the client. MSP’s have a Network Operation Center (NOC) that delivers network support for its clients. The goal of this service is to meet the IT needs of the company. Some of these are:
  •  24/7 Network Optimization
  •  Hardware and Software Management
  •  Overall Data Management Support
  •  Technical support to company’s staff
Then, the counterpart of that with Managed Security Service Providers is what we call Security Operation Center (SOC). Its main function is to prevent problems caused by uncontrolled factors, such as, but not limited to:
  • 24/7 Network Security
  • Analysis and Monitoring of System and Security Logs
  • Detection of Risks and Threats
  • Study Past Attacks To Prevent in Future
So if you can see, the features of one another have similarities and differences, but they are both helpful to your company. Some companies choose one over the other due to priorities or budget constraints, but many choose to get MSP services and pair it up with an MSSP with a specific set of support services to get the benefits of both systems.

The Bottom Line

For better data and customer management, MSP and MSSP are essential for your business. You need to evaluate your needs and priorities, as the consequences of not having either MSP or MSSP are more dire and costly, and accidents or attacks can devastate your business’s data and technology. It is a little bit confusing to think of the differences, as they’re not entirely interchangeable. Companies should be aware of what services they need to prioritize and have in place. The main difference between the two is that MSP focuses on internal management, such as IT performance, data usability, and administration, while MSSP focuses on external threats as it protects you by giving you optimal safety and security. It is not in competition with one another, so if your company needs both of them, you can get both of the services to get the best IT management for your company. For example, it is possible for one single IT company to function as both an MSSP as well as an MSSP like Nerds Support. If you need help deciding what kind of solution provider it right for you, we can offer you a free IT Consultation where we examine your needs in-depth and give insight as to what could be best for your business moving forward.
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