We’re early into 2020, and it seems like security breaches are becoming more frequent. I’m sure many of you have already seen this headline: Microsoft Security Shocker As 250 Million Customer Records Exposed Online! As you know, Microsoft can afford the best cybersecurity in the world. If they can be hacked, what makes everyone else think they are safe?

Recently, we had the opportunity to sit down with Jennifer Bleam of MSP Sales Revolution to discuss the growing threat of security breaches. Jennifer strongly believes that cybersecurity is a weak link in many MSP operations and that we all need to pay more attention to this growing threat. We agree with her!

CharTec: Why should MSPs pay more attention to cybersecurity?

Jennifer: Because our clients and prospects are going to start to ask us how we are keeping ourselves safe. “You’re housing my data, and you’ve got remote access to my machines, and you can screen connect and you can do all these things — that’s an awful lot of power. Why should I trust you? What are you doing to keep yourself safe, and by extension me, the client?”

CharTec: Why are hackers attacking MSPs?

Jennifer: If you break into an MSP you’ve hit the jackpot. In fact, there was a major breach reported last November. An MSP was hacked and over 100 Dental Clients’ data was encrypted and held for ransom. It’s scary. And many breaches aren’t reported because the MSP doesn’t want their reputation ruined.

CharTec: it makes sense that the owners don’t want to report it.

Jennifer: Yes. You don’t want that to get out. As we go into 2020, I think we’re going to start to see more breaches of MSPs that make the news, which then gives all of us a black eye and makes selling cybersecurity that much harder. It’ll be important to have an answer to the question; “What are you doing that makes you different.” And there are still MSPs that ignore these threats.

CharTec: It’s like MSPs are sticking their heads in the sand.

Jennifer: True! We hear how the giant corporations with deep pockets keep getting hacked, and I still hear MSP owners say, “Well, Amazon can’t keep themselves safe, therefore I’m going to do nothing.” Well, okay, that’s your choice, but you’re literally putting the life of your business on the line. And that’s only the tip of the iceberg.

CharTec: It certainly is! MSPs store sensitive data from other companies.

Jennifer: Yeah, I mean, when an MSP gets hacked it’s like a cheat code in a video game, right? You go into one doorway and all of a sudden, you’re in this hall of riches. All this data is mine by hacking one MSP! “Hey look, I broke into an MSP and I now have access to 500 or 5,000 endpoints!” That’s kind of a good strategy from a business standpoint. Now we need to figure out how we protect ourselves from that. But it is brilliant.

CharTec: Professional hacking is a growing industry these days.

Jennifer: Right! They are smart business people. I think that it’s easy for MSPs to forget that, but I don’t think the small business owners realize that they’re up against sophisticated businesses, and nation-states, and that these aren’t just 17-year-old kids who are about to get expelled because they hacked into their school’s network.

CharTec: What challenges do MSPs have when selling cybersecurity?

Jennifer: One thing I hear a lot is, “Well, I don’t like to sell based on fear. I don’t like fear-mongering.” But fear-mongering is trying to get people to believe something that is extremely unlikely to happen. The reality is that a small business owner getting hit by one of these breaches or ransomware threats is extremely likely, especially if they do nothing to protect themselves. Raising these concerns is not fear-mongering any more than selling a BDR is fear-mongering. Selling a BDR isn’t fear-mongering, it’s saying data loss is a real and present danger. We need to do something about it and we’d be foolish not to. It’s the same type of conversation.

CharTec: We’ve heard you mention that 93% of SMBs would switch their MSP if someone else offered better cybersecurity protection. Should MSPs be worried?

Jennifer: If you know that 93% of your clients would switch IT companies if they were offered the right cybersecurity solution, then you should see that as a tremendous threat to your business. If you can’t preserve your client base, then you’re in trouble. That means if your competitors figure out how to position, and how to package, and how to price cybersecurity, and they somehow get ahold of your client list, you’ve got a really good chance of losing up to 93% of your existing clients. Those numbers scare me.

CharTec: That’s very close to 100% of your clients!

Jennifer: Right! Even if that number is half wrong, you’ve only lost half your base. There’s not a lot of IT companies out there that have sufficient cash reserves that they can afford to lose, inside of a few months or a year, half of their client base. It’s a threat. That particular data is a threat to the MSPs because they have to learn how to sell cybersecurity. It’s self-preservation on the financial side as well.

CharTec: Is there a positive side for motivated MSPs?

Jennifer: Yes, and that’s the good news. The numbers mean that 93% of every small business in your area is concerned enough about cybersecurity that they would switch to you if they believed you offered a better security package. It’s a tremendous opportunity. Again, even if we cut the number in half, to me that’s prospecting gold. Hire a telemarketer or an appointment center for a month and get in the door. Even if all you do is sell them cybersecurity and let the managed service provider keep the IT side, for now, get your foot in the door and show them what you can do. It’s a huge opportunity.

CharTec: So MSPs can make those numbers work in their favor, right?

Jennifer: it’s unprecedented. It’s almost enough to make me want to start my own security company. I don’t ever remember seeing numbers that are like, “Hey, almost 100% of the world wants what you’re selling.” That’s beautiful. There’re a lot of companies out there that would love an opportunity like this. That’s pretty amazing.

If you have questions about cybersecurity, you can contact us at: sales@CharTec.net

Or, contact Jennifer Bleam directly at: mspsalesrevolution.com