Software as a service (SaaS) is a model for software delivery and use that allows users to access cloud-based applications from anywhere in the world. The software provider typically charges a fee for the software usage that takes into account a length of time and the number of users accessing the service. This means the end user does not need to worry about the infrastructure, firmware, and maintenance needed to keep the service running and can simply pay to use the provided software as needed. Essentially everyone already uses a software as a service model when they interact with email or other common work-related services, and in cybersecurity, common SaaS solutions help support the business’ cybersecurity posture.
Common SaaS Solutions
SaaS solutions play a variety of critical roles in the cybersecurity infrastructure of small and medium businesses. Data protection and network security are two areas with the most familiar software as a service solutions in the form of endpoint protection, data backup services, multifactor authentication (MFA) and next-generation firewalls. SMBs will work with a managed service provider (MSP) to deploy the security solution and onboard company devices so that any device that accesses the network is enrolled in the security services needed to prevent it from becoming an attack vector for hackers. Depending on the industry and critical data handled by the company, an MSP can recommend different SaaS solutions that tailor fit that business’ IT infrastructure and needed protection.
While SaaS solutions provide a lot of benefits to a business, they do present opportunities to malicious actors for attacks if they are not maintained well over time. If the security application is not updated regularly or user accounts are not properly protected, hackers can leverage present vulnerabilities to access important data or completely take over user accounts. Settings within each service must also be configured correctly to ensure user accounts do not have unnecessary privileges or that bad actors outside the network cannot glean information from internet facing parts of the service. Overall, SaaS solutions require professional expertise when being deployed and maintained to ensure vulnerabilities are not easily exploited by hackers.
Best Practices for SaaS
To ensure software as a service solutions are implemented properly and are configured to protect accounts, SMBs should work with a reliable MSP and/or IT consultant. A cybersecurity expert can perform a risk assessment to identify any gaps in the cybersecurity posture of the business and recommend cost effective solutions or quick fixes for problems. Patch management and employee training are also important ways a business can improve the effectiveness of its security solutions because regular patching can fix known vulnerabilities and educated employees can use the security software properly. SMBs should also always have an incident response plan in place so they can quickly react to breaches in their network in the event that a solution fails.
Software as a service solutions are common place in both small and large businesses, and they offer SMBs a cost effective way to protect data and user accounts. These subscription-based applications allow businesses to customize needed software to suit their needs and only use the features they need for the number of users they have. This scalability and ease of use makes SaaS solutions valuable, and our team here at Robinett Consulting wants to help you take advantage of these benefits! Our security experts are ready to work with your small business to find the right security solutions for your network, and we’ll help you maintain your services so that they provide the best security possible around the clock!
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