Cyber Security Certifications In 2021

Will Your MSP Have Cybersecurity Certifications To Protect Digital Assets In 2021?

Business decision-makers typically outsource their IT needs because they gain access to experts at a reduced cost. That seems like the perfect capitalistic solution to the high cost of maintaining an in-house staff of technicians. What could go wrong? Actually, quite a lot.

Too many industry leaders are learning hard lessons that not all IT managed service providers (MSPs) are created equal. In fact, many market themselves as so-called “cybersecurity experts” without having the certification to back it up. That usually means that the MSP has not invested in the ongoing cybersecurity training and education of its staff. So, in essence, you are not getting the top-tier expertise you thought. The big question is: How vulnerable are your digital assets right now?

How Do Uncertified MSPs Put Organizations at Risk?

Part of the value of outsourcing stems from the cutting-edge knowledge an MSP brings to the table. Those outfits that have not undergone cybersecurity training and certification may very well be providing you with high-level services in other ways. But in terms of your organization surviving a cyber-attack, you rank among the low-hanging fruit ready to be plucked. These are ways uncertified MSPs put your digital assets at risk.

  • Outdated Methods: Cybersecurity doesn’t evolve at a snail’s pace. Experts in the field design strategies and leverage emerging technologies to push back on the latest hacking schemes. This chess match plays out daily, not monthly, or yearly. Hackers can plow right through yesterday’s defenses.
  • Outdated Technology: When an MSP fails to invest in certification, next-generation technological advancements are unlikely to be rolled out. One trending example would be organizations implementing multi-factor authentication (MFA). While two-factor authentication (2FA) was considered the best defense just last year, MFA far exceeds that defense today.
  • Outdated Data Storage: One of the ways that untrained MSPs may offset their lack of knowledge circles back to how they advise you about data storage. Given the outfit’s staff may be ill-prepared to defend your data in the Cloud, it’s not uncommon to hear onsite storage advocacy. Not only does this prevent your organization from increased security, but it also drives up IT infrastructure costs.

According to resources such as the Digital Guardian, the average cost of a data breach in the U.S. exceeds $8 million. Business leaders need to understand that cybercriminals relentlessly search for vulnerabilities. Cybersecurity experts match their play and only those with top-tier knowledge and experience can protect your digital assets.

Should You Insist on Cyber Security Certification in 2021?

The short answer to that question is: Yes! Note the exclamation point. If you enjoy an ongoing working relationship with a third-party IT professional, now would be a good time to make your expectations clear. Consider that warning more than fair given your company will remain at risk until corrective measures are taken.

On the other hand, it may be in your best interest to interview managed security service providers (MSSPs) rather than remain exposed. These ranks among the industry-leading cybersecurity certifications of a true MSSP.

  • Certified Ethical Hacker
  • Certified Information Systems Security Professional
  • Certified Information Security Manager
  • SANS GIAC Security Essentials
  • CompTIA Security+
  • Certified Information Systems Auditor

Going forward, managed IT investments may uptick when pivoting away from an outfit that failed to earn certification. But the cost of a reliable MSSP delivers enhanced security and generally remains far below the average salary of a Cyber Security Analysts ($99,815), or Information Systems Security Manager ($126,991).

Without determined cybersecurity, hackers could wreak financial havoc on your organization. If you are like many organizations that believed the low-cost of working with your current MSP made sound fiscal sense, it may be worth taking a longer look. By enlisting the services of a certified IT firm, you may finally get your money’s worth.