Channel, Networking

SMB Security = Golden Opportunity for MSPs

In our previous two blog posts we discussed the security challenges that confront SMBs (“6 Things Security Prospects Need to Hear From MSPs”) and their candid responses to queries about their preparedness to meet today’s cybersecurity threats (“SMBs Acknowledge Key Security Vulnerabilities”). Continuing to leverage data from the Webroot 2015 SMB Threat Report, this third and concluding post focuses on the lack of IT security resources in many SMBs—and how that deficiency opens up lucrative business opportunities for MSPs like you.

As you’ll see in the following responses (obtained from participants in our survey conducted for the 2015 SMB Threat Report), many SMBs are aware that they need outside help on the security front—and are prepared to pay for it:

Is your business prone to cybersecurity attacks because you don’t have the same resources as larger enterprises?

  • 15% — Disagree strongly
  • 26% — Disagree somewhat
  • 37% — Agree somewhat
  • 22% — Agree strongly

Skilled cybersecurity resources are in short supply in all sectors, so it’s not surprising that 59% of SMBs perceive themselves as at a disadvantage when compared to better-funded enterprise organizations with more resources. The fundamental challenge these SMBs face lies in acquiring or reallocating resources to address the lack without damaging the business’ bottom line. In other words, an ideal scenario for MSPs to gain new clients.

How much time did you spend on cybersecurity in the past 6 months?

  • 44% — 17 hours or more
  • 21% — 9-16 hours
  • 27% — 1-8 hours
  • 8% — 0 hours

An unexpected 56% of respondents reported having spent less than 17 hours (2 business days) in the past six months on cybersecurity. This is likely due to a lack of adequate IT support and resources dedicated to security education and prevention.

Would outsourcing increase your bandwidth to address other areas?

  • 19% — Disagree (net)
  • 81% — Agree (net)
  • 5% — Disagree strongly
  • 14% — Disagree somewhat
  • 53% — Agree somewhat
  • 28% — Agree strongly

Many SMBs are outsourcing cybersecurity to MSPs in order to compensate for their lack of time and in-house expertise. Overall, 81% of the survey respondents agreed that such outsourcing would improve their bandwidth for addressing other tasks, with 28% agreeing strongly and 53% agreeing somewhat.

By what percentage do you expect to increase your Annual IT Security Budget for 2016?

  • 22% — Average (increase)
  • 81% — Any (net)
  • 12% — Plan to decrease annual security budget in 2016
  • 12% — 50-100%
  • 19% — 20-49%
  • 50% — 1-19%
  • 7% — No change

Given the daily news about breaches at major retailers and other organizations, the majority of SMBs plan to increase their cybersecurity budget in 2016. The survey results show that 81% of the respondents plan to increase their budget by an average of 22%. This should help SMBs significantly improve their security postures as they acquire or improve on cybersecurity resources and practices.

Bottom Line

The Webroot 2015 SMB Threat Report shows that SMBs know they have security vulnerabilities, are not fully equipped to address them, and must spend more to correct these shortcomings. Using the report’s data, MSPs can better target the security needs of prospective SMB clients (and win more business).

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Webroot offers cloud-based, real-time internet threat detection solutions for MSPs and their customers. Read all Webroot guest blogs here.