Why Canadian SMBs are choosing managed service partners to protect against cyber threats

New Cisco data shows only nine percent of Canadian businesses are prepared to handle hybrid security risks.

Let’s face it, the pace of business transformation has hit warp speed, especially for SMBs.

This rate of change has made for many complex and critical pivots, whether that’s through understanding customer’s changing demands, implementing strategic shifts to adapt, or maintaining a workforce that’s trying to keep up. Now, the evolving threat of cyberattacks means facing an entirely new challenge – and it’s one that can’t be ignored.

Earlier this year, Cisco’s Cybersecurity Readiness Index found that Canada falls under the global average in cybersecurity readiness. Only nine percent of Canadian organizations have a “mature” level of preparedness to handle the security risks of our hybrid world, compared to fifteen percent globally.

Seventy-seven percent of respondents expect a cybersecurity incident to disrupt their business in the next 12 to 24 months.

Being unprepared is one thing, but being caught unprepared can be detrimental to a business. Seventy-seven percent of respondents said that they expect a cybersecurity incident to disrupt their business in the next 12 to 24 months, and over a third of organizations who were affected said it cost at least $500,000 USD.

With limited time, capital and availability to set up an IT department to keep track of the evolving threats to their businesses, Canadian SMBs need to prepare for the worst yet are stretched far too thin to do so. The good news is, there is a simple solution: leveraging the expertise of a trusted partner. Working with a partner who not only knows the threat landscape but knows how to navigate it safely and securely can help you simplify and secure your business, keeping threats at bay and off of your plate.

Partnering for protection

From providing on-demand cybersecurity talent and expertise in the case of an attack or simply giving peace of mind knowing all your bases are covered, working with a partner to manage your cybersecurity needs can take significant pressure off of your shoulders so you can focus on what matters most: your business.

And it’s gaining traction. A recent Cisco study found that cybersecurity is leading the growth in managed services as customers continue to prioritize security response spending due to a rapidly evolving threat landscape. According to the study, 56 percent of channel partners expect revenues from cybersecurity managed services to grow this year.

As these services see continued growth, so do the existing options for partnerships. That’s where your decision comes in, and it might be the most important one you can make for your business.

While finding the right partner does require time and research, it can help identify the gaps and better understand what threats exist to your business so you can be sure you’re ready for anything. So, how do you find the right partner for your business? It takes a few simple steps:

Understand what your organization needs

Before diving in, take a moment to really understand what your organization needs. Maybe you’re looking to implement a firewall service for your team, or you’re looking for a full-service suite to protect the entire enterprise. Either way, starting with a thorough audit to understand what your organization needs is the most important first step.

Online tools like Cisco’s Small Business Product Selector can help you find what kind of tools your business needs, and direct you to a partner who specializes in the process.

Evaluate your options

While being protected against threats is more urgent than ever, it’s important not to rush into deciding on a partner. Evaluate your options and understand what they offer. Do some research on their teams, their credentials and dig into any case studies to better understand your future partner.

There are currently over 1,200 Cisco partner organizations in Canada. Partners such as CDW, Long View Systems, Softchoice and TELUS offer Cisco Managed Security Services solutions and are ready to solve your business challenges. Dig in and learn more about how they can help here.

Keep it simple

The cybersecurity market can be confusing and convoluted. With tools and technology evolving every day, it can be difficult to know where to look and who to turn to. When in doubt, look for options that keep things simple.

At Cisco, we’re always looking for ways to simplify the buying process. Our security suites group together the products you need in a simple, all-in-one solution.

It’s not every day that the most important decision for your business also happens to be one of the simplest ways to protect it. Whether it’s prioritizing your posture or easing your mind, simplifying security can be as easy as a few clicks.

Learn more about how Cisco’s cybersecurity offerings can help your business here.

Calvin Chiu

Calvin Chiu

Calvin Chiu is the National Cybersecurity Partner Business Development Manager for Cisco Canada. Calvin is an accomplished professional with over 25 years of experience in the technology industry, with a primary focus on cybersecurity. His deep industry knowledge and diverse background have uniquely positioned him as a trusted expert in the field of cybersecurity. Calvin is a valued 10-year veteran at Cisco, where he has gained a reputation for his exceptional understanding of partners' businesses. He is known for his dedication to helping partners thrive by enabling their growth in Cisco and security practices. His strategic insights and collaborative approach have played a pivotal role in driving success for both Cisco and its valued partners.

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