At a time when managed service providers (MSPs) are under sustained cyberattack, ConnectWise has launched a Technology Solution Provider Information Sharing and Analysis Organization (TSP-ISAO) through which cybersecurity threats aimed specifically at MSPs will be identified and closely monitored.
The provider of professional service automation (PSA) and remote monitoring and management (RMS) platform through which MSPs manage their operations sees there is now a clear need to establish a cybersecurity community specifically for MSPs, says John Ford, chief information security officer (CISO) for ConnectWise. The issue with existing cybersecurity threat feeds is there are too many alerts that only apply to, for example, the financial services sector. TSP-ISAO will comb through all those feeds to identify the ones most relevant to MSPs, says Ford.
Just this week there was an additional report of MSPs serving a network of dentists falling victim to a ransomware attack. MSPs have come under increased attack because cybercriminals have discovered that if they can compromise one MSP, they can then laterally attack the customers that rely on those MSPs. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) first began warning about these attacks last October. At the end of that year, the U.S. Department of Justice announced that Chinese nationals had conducted global campaigns targeting (MSPs) against at least nine MSPs. Not too long later, it was revealed Wipro had been the victim of an ongoing series of phishing attacks targeting its employees. Most recently, ransomware attacks have targeted the software many MSPs rely on to manage their operations. Subsequently, those ransomware attacks were extended to include customers of those MSPs.
ConnectWise already offers Perch, a platform through which MSPs can co-manage threat detection with their clients. As these attacks continue to take a toll on MSPs, Ford says ConnectWise is inviting MSPs and other technology vendors to participate in TSP-ISAO regardless of what platform they are using.
“This is not a competition,” says Ford. “We all need to come together.”
There may not be much that can be done to prevent cyberattacks from being launched in the first place but there’s still plenty of opportunity to improve the defenses MSPs have in place, notes Ford.
The challenge, of course, is that MSPs have varying degrees of cybersecurity expertise. Ford notes that MSPs that work in regulated industries typically have more cybersecurity expertise than those that might focus on small businesses. Whatever the level of expertise, the more success cybercriminals have against MSPs the more the credibility of an entire sector of the channel will continue to suffer.