Save Your Time!

Stacy Hagemann
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Work Smart!

The other day I was sitting at my desk and I thought, “I’m really starting to become my mother!!”  Let me back up for a sec my mom has always been a reader, a researcher, and loves to constantly be learning and asking questions along the way. I have always been more like my dad not a big reader, but always working on something around the house or yard, creating/fixing to make it better (engineering stuff).

In January 2018, I made a career change. I moved from the implementation Engineering Team at MCS to a Pre-Sales Security Engineering role. It was an exciting change as I thought about learning all of the security products we offer. As I transitioned, I found myself reading and researching constantly. I quickly discovered many of our vendors have multiple products, in multiple areas of security. Plus, the area of IT Security has grown tremendously over the last several years.

Think about IT Security 15 years ago you had your traditional Data Center, with firewalls, IPS/IDS, WAF, AV, Vulnerability Management, and maybe a few other products. At that time, IT was really about the Network.

Now, fast forward to present day where Security is King! On top of those listed above, you now have data requirements (GDPR, PII, etc), email, IAM, PAM, EPP/EDR, SIEM, UBA I could go on and on, and I haven’t even mentioned cloud yet! Cloud traditionally started as SaaS, IaaS, and PaaS, but in the last couple of years it has also developed into CaaS and FaaS. Are you feeling overwhelmed yet??

Did you know, in 2013 at the RSA conference there were 350 exhibitors and in 2019 there were 631? That’s an 80% increase in startups and innovative areas popping up in IT Security. Gartner and Forrester are constantly evaluating new areas, combining others, and helping create new industry terms. No wonder it’s becoming difficult for Security Admins to keep up with what is going on in the market!

This brings me back to my point “I really am starting to become my mother!!”   Ha-ha! As our product offerings change to remain current in the evolving security market; I am researching and learning many areas of IT security to help you, our customers, make the right decisions for your specific needs. With all the products out there, you can imagine there are many that don’t live up to their hype or are perhaps too visionary for present-day implementation. The thing I love about working at MCS, is we sometimes refer to ourselves as a Security Boutique Reseller. We take the time to vet out who we bring on board. We don’t want a product that is “fly by night” or the “one hit wonder”, but we do value innovation with the right amount of consistency.

If you are a CISO or Security Admin and you are able to effectively research all these areas and do all your regular job functions Kudos to you! You are in great shape. However, I think with the highly documented shortage of IT workers, this is most likely not the case. Here is where I “Save Your TIME” and suggest you find yourself a Trusted Security Partner ideally me and my MCS crew, ha-ha!

In all seriousness, you do need a TSP (Trusted Security Partner) whether it’s MCS or another Partner. So, let me give you some tips as you think about your current Partner or if you are in search of a new one

Things you should look for in a TSP:

  1. Do they sell anything and everything?

Then they might not help you find what will best fit your specific needs/use cases. They are aka…product pushers. They have competitive pricing, but may not have a lot of knowledge to help vet out the right solution. Tread lightly especially with security products.

  1. Do they research, take the initiative to inform you about new solutions and changes in the security market?

I can’t tell you how many customers I run across that aren’t hearing about new products that can help enhance their daily work or know the latest changes in industry terms. The SOAR space and MITRE ATT&CK have been two big topics this year.

  1. Do they listen?

I guess that comes naturally to me. However, it’s important you find someone you trust and who listens to what your issues are and helps you navigate your long term road map.

  1. The old adage two heads are better than one!

Make sure they are bringing you value and helping you solve your problems.

Life is constantly changing, and we are consistently inundated with the new “this or that”; technology, acronyms, foods, travel locations you name it! Oh, and don’t forget keeping up with your life; family, friends, kids, job, home, etc. The IT Security market is no exception, it’s going to keep evolving. You see it in the cloud, IoT, people, and data everywhere. This requires a whole new way of thinking and innovations we can’t even predict or comprehend right now.

So, take my advice and help yourself… find a good solid TSP to do the research, keep you informed, collaborate with, and most of all… Save Your TIME!