Whether you operate your business on the cloud or in a brick-and-mortar office, you must be storing gigabytes of business data. To secure those data from hackers you need security as a service (SECaaS).
Security for stored data, in-transit data, payment processing platforms, etc., is of great concern for any kind of business. Enterprises can afford to hire a big IT security team to protect the organization’s data from external or internal threats. But, small, medium and startup businesses may not want to afford this extra burden on their working capital.
Security as a service (SECaaS) subscriptions evolved to ease this burden. With its growing popularity, large businesses are also choosing this service to focus on business rather than non-productive projects.
Continue reading to learn more about this new trend of cloud computing and business data security for any kind of venture.
The Evolving Market of SECaaS
Security as a service market is expanding rapidly. There are various reasons. You can find the most crucial ones below:
Increased trend of work from home and virtual offices
Companies are allowing bring-or-own-device (BYOD) to save on hardware costs
Maintaining on-site security solutions is highly costly and also a headache
Businesses want to focus more on revenue generation
The extraordinary pace in the growth of IoT and IIoT devices
Online security threats and tools for hacking are growing rapidly
At present, irrespective of the business size, the stakeholders are looking for foolproof security solutions so they do not fall prey to ransomware attacks. Such security threats can shut down your business for good.
A Statista report says the SECaaS market value was $6.91 billion in 2018. It grew rapidly, and in 2022 the market value is standing at $12.6 billion. The report expects that the value of the SECaaS market will boom to a whopping $22.67 billion industry by 2026.
With the rapid adaptation of 5G mobile telecommunications, SECaaS will also grow exponentially. Because more businesses will need to protect advanced business devices and the enormous volume of data they will collect from users, customers, and employees.
What Is SECaaS?
Security as a service (SECaaS) is an outsourced business data security service model. In this concept, an outside company manages and handles your business’s cloud or non-cloud data security.
You might have used online antivirus systems to scan your business computers for malware, virus, spyware, trojans, ransomware, etc. That is the simplest form of SECaaS.
With SECaaS, you no longer manage the security of your servers, workstations, networking equipment, routers, business mobiles, laptops, etc., locally. Because it is highly tedious and costly to maintain a robust IT department whose task is to install security solutions in every business device, update that software from time to time, and ask employees to use those apps.
You build your business on a secured cloud or non-cloud platform in this new form. An expert third-party organization will take care of all the security needs. All you need to do is subscribe to a sufficient security service plan and go through the contract mindfully.
There have been many incidents of security breaches in medium, small, or big business organizations due to the lack of security measures. Sometimes, small and medium businesses can not afford effective security solutions. They simply rely on free or paid antivirus solutions.
In the case of enterprises, they have an in-house cyber security team in their IT department. But there is a reluctance from the IT team or the employees to follow the security guidelines, do daily updates, perform data security breach drills, etc.
Security as a service addresses all these issues and makes data security more accessible to any business. That is not all! It creates a culture of security awareness among the employees.
Features of SECaaS
Internet Network Security
The most important functionality of a SECaaS service is to secure all the data connections happening through the internet and intranet networks.
The service needs to analyze all data packets to ensure they catch most of the viruses and malware at the entry point.
Endpoint and User-Side Security
Endpoints are highly vulnerable sites for data security breaches. Hence, SECaaS also comes with a functionality to secure all the computer devices connected to your business servers from the employees’ or customers’ end.
Endpoint security also ensures the confidentiality of your business data. You can prevent employees from writing company data to external storage.
A business communicates with its people through emails, chats, SMSs, WhatsApp calls, phone calls, push notifications, and so on. Security as a service product also monitors the data transfers of such communications to ensure total security.
Security information and event management or SEIM, is a feature to analyze company networks for silent cyber attacks. After the identification of the malware, the SECaaS can defend against the threat and prevent any data breaches.
Assessing Business Security
SECaaS also deploys a regular business security analysis to identify unknown vulnerabilities and develop programs or policies to make the company more secure.
Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity
Business continuity planning and data recovery from disaster should also be there in a trusted SECaaS product.
Prevent Data Loss
Business data is priceless! Hence, SECaaS products come with data backup services. This feature backs up data on regular intervals in distributed sites so that you do not need to accept ransom demands from a hacker.
Identity and Access Management
IAM helps you establish a role-based data access policy. It also helps to draw a timeline of the data access footprint for audit purposes.
The ultimate goal is to control the business data and app access from a central tool and keep a record of everything your employees access when they are working.
Intrusion Detection and Prevention System
IDPS is the utilization of hardware and software firewalls to protect your business servers, workstations, and data centers from unknown traffic.
Also, when hackers install malware on your system, the IDPS protocol denies network access to such apps to contain them in a sandbox.
The Best Examples of SECaaS
Encrypting business data while in transit to an app or at rest
Scanning business’s email inboxes for phishing and malware attacks
Scanning the business networks to monitor users and services
Web security to protect cloud apps from becoming an entry point to your business server
Frequently scanning your IT assets to discover novel vulnerabilities and closing those loopholes
Identify potential intruders to your business server and disconnect their connections through intrusion management
Prevent the loss of data by backing up business data continuously
Recover data after a disaster instantly and get back to business operations
Different Types of SECaaS
The Cloud Security Alliance (CSA) is the leading non-profit organization that oversees cloud and business data security across the globe. It differentiated SECaaS into the following categories:
Security as a service usually works in an overarching manner. All of your business data connections will go through a secure internet or intranet. The SECaaS provider may use local or foreign VPNs to hide your business data from expert hackers who are targeting you.
The service provider will create a business security account for you with a dashboard. Then, you can register all of your business devices within that account. The dashboard will function as a visual interface to monitor which device is accessing what.
Any device that you do not register in the new system will not be able to access your cloud apps or servers. Thus, you do not need to worry about employees who have already left your organization.
Why Depend on SECaaS
You are getting cyber security from high-tech SECaaS providers.
Small and medium businesses can easily afford enterprise-level security features.
SECaaS providers can respond to a security threat more quickly than in-house security teams.
When you outsource your security requirements to a trusted third party, you can focus on sales and marketing.
No headache for managing in-house digital devices like servers, workstations, mobiles, firewalls, routers, etc. The SECaaS provider will appropriately tag and manage your business devices.
SECaaS providers will help you with data backup, and frequent security breach drills, and suggest advanced security measures as the industry develops.
The Challenges of SECaaS
Finding an affordable SECaaS subscription package could be tricky since the service is getting heavy demand from every industry.
There could be a monopoly of security as a service that will force you to pay premium prices after a few years down the line.
You need to perform your own due diligence before choosing a SECaaS provider and investing in it.
You will have lesser control over your business’s security policies.
Your business could be at risk if hacker groups hack the service provider’s servers.
Service providers mostly use a shared cloud infrastructure that increases the data leakage possibility.
How to Choose the Best Security as a Service (SECaaS) Provider
Ensure that the SECaaS provider you choose offers the best uptime for network resources, cloud apps, and security dashboards.
Also, there should be a technically sound customer service team who can help you with unforeseen issues immediately.
Response Time and SLA
When getting a demo of the vendor’s services, discuss in detail their response timing. You can also add a clause in the contract about a certain SLA and response time before signing the deal.
Explore different SECaaS vendor pricing before signing up for one.
Research the vendor partners for the security provider you are interested in. Ensure that the security as a service provider is using standard cloud services and cutting-edge technologies.
Disaster Recovery Planning
Go for a SECaaS provider that has its own business continuity and disaster recovery planning.
Do not go for any vendor lock-in subscriptions. Always prefer flexible subscriptions with easy cancellation policies.
The service provider should give you access to an effortless security tool where you can monitor the whole security planning.
Security as a Service (SECaaS) Providers
Here is some popular SECaaS that you can check out to increase your knowledge about the features and services:
Perimeter 81 is a big name in the corporate network security industry. It offers the following SECaaS solutions:
Zscaler Internet Access offers AI-powered SECaaS products. Some of its notable security offerings are:
Zscaler client connector
Zscalare B2B internet
Zscaler digital experience
Secure cloud migration
Qualys Security as a Service
If you want to ensure your public cloud apps are compliant and secure, you can try out Qualys. Some of its key offerings are:
Threat detection and response
Custom assessment and remediation
SaaS detection and response
Cloud security assessment
Web app scanning and firewall
So far, you have gone through a detailed discussion on security as a service (SECaaS) applicable to cloud and non-cloud businesses. Furthermore, you have also discovered some popular apps that can help you get started with using SECaaS.
Moreover, the article also explains how to choose the best security as service provider for your business. You can now become highly confident in choosing the right security product to protect your business data from bad actors.
You may also be interested in desktop-as-a-service and some of the best DaaS providers for your cloud business.
Tamal is a freelance writer at Geekflare. After completing his MS in Science, he joined reputed IT consultancy companies to acquire hands-on knowledge of IT technologies and business management. Now, he’s a professional freelance content… read more