Maximizing Incident Response: A Win-Win for MSPs and Their Clients

January 31, 2024
1 min read

The value of incident response (IR) for managed service providers (MSPs) and their customers is highlighted in a recent article by Arctic Wolf. MSPs understand the importance of IR and many offer or plan to offer IR services. IR is a critical component of a comprehensive cybersecurity strategy, as it helps organizations prepare for and respond to cyber incidents. According to a survey, 91% of MSPs offer or plan to offer IR services, but it’s important for both the MSPs and their clients to understand what IR is and how it functions.

IR involves processes and tools used to identify, contain, and remediate a cyber incident within an organization’s environment. It includes securing the environment, analyzing the cause and extent of the threat actor’s activities, and restoring the network and organization to its pre-incident condition. IR is needed in cases of significant data breaches, business email compromises, ransomware attacks, compromised domain controllers, and active malware. The goal of IR is to prevent incidents from becoming data breaches and minimize their impact on an organization.

There are two components of IR: proactive and reactive. Proactive IR works to prevent and minimize incidents before they occur, while reactive IR focuses on remediation and recovery after an incident has been identified. Proactive IR includes vulnerability management, IR planning, and obtaining cyber insurance. Reactive IR involves measures such as network and endpoint isolation, threat actor containment and removal, and updating security measures post-incident.

IR planning is a crucial part of proactive IR and guides an organization’s incident response during a cyberattack. It includes defining roles and responsibilities, selecting tools and technologies, implementing risk transfer measures such as cyber insurance, developing business continuity plans, establishing communication plans, and documenting instructions. MSPs can play a critical role in helping their clients develop and implement IR plans.

Another IR-related solution is the IR retainer, which provides organizations with pre-paid hours and guaranteed services in case of an incident. MSPs can recommend that their clients utilize an IR retainer to assist with IR planning and ensure that they are prepared if an incident occurs.

The value of IR for organizations is evident, as threat actors continue to target organizations and steal data. MSPs can guide their clients in making IR decisions and processes to improve their security outcomes. IR helps prevent and mitigate the damages of an incident, while enabling organizations to respond better, recover faster, and prevent future attacks.

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