Understanding the Distinctions Between MSP and MSSP Services

In today’s technology-driven world, businesses heavily rely on modern technology to operate efficiently. Whether it’s logistics, supply chain management, bookkeeping, or financial transactions, almost everything now has an online alternative that requires robust cyber security. To ensure smooth operations and safeguard customer data, companies should have either a dedicated IT team or partner with a Managed IT Services Provider (MSP) or Managed Security Service Provider (MSSP). However, choosing the right kind of services for your business can be challenging. Let’s explore the differences between MSP and MSSP to help you make informed decisions.


 What is an MSP and MSSP?

MSP stands for **Managed Service Provider**, while MSSP stands for **Managed Security Service Provider**. Both are third-party professional services that offer technical support from remote locations. Companies often seek professional help to manage their cybersecurity both internally and externally. Whether you need an IT co-management staff, a cost-effective IT team, or experts to handle your company’s IT system, you can find support from either an MSP or MSSP, depending on your specific needs.


 Managed Service Provider (MSP)

Partnering with an MSP is beneficial when you encounter technology-related issues in your business. They can provide the services that best suit your needs, offering remote support or a software-as-a-service (SaaS) option. A reputable MSP will have the expertise to manage, safeguard, and maintain your company’s overall IT needs. The range of services an MSP can provide includes:

  • Application Management
  • Backup Management and Security
  • Business VoIP Phone Services
  • Cloud Services Management
  • Data Loss Prevention
  • Database Management
  • IT Administration


Managed Security Service Provider (MSSP)

MSSPs offer top-notch cybersecurity solutions tailored to your data protection needs. They provide knowledgeable teams that defend and protect your company against data breaches, leaks, malware, and ransomware. These services offer adjustable protection and encryption to secure your business not only from external threats but also from internal data access by employees. A trusted MSSP ensures compliance with security and privacy regulations and laws, such as SOC 2, HIPAA, ISO, and PCI DSS. MSSPs can provide services like:

  • Anti-virus
  • Data Loss Prevention
  • Incident Management and Response
  • Network monitoring
  • Regulatory Compliance
  • Risk Assessments
  • VPN Management


 The Difference between an MSP and MSSP

At a glance, the difference is apparent—the extra word “Security” in MSSP. The main distinction is that MSSPs focus on security, while MSPs are more oriented towards IT administration and support for the client. MSPs have a Network Operation Center (NOC) that delivers network support to clients, aiming to meet their IT needs. Some of the services they offer include:

  • 24/7 Network Optimization
  • Hardware and Software Management
  • Overall Data Management Support
  • Technical support to the company’s staff

On the other hand, MSSPs operate through a Security Operation Center (SOC), with the main goal of preventing problems caused by external factors. Their services include:

  • 24/7 Network Security
  • Analysis and Monitoring of System and Security Logs
  • Detection of Risks and Threats
  • Study of Past Attacks to Prevent Future Ones

While there are both similarities and differences between MSPs and MSSPs, they are both beneficial for your company. Some businesses choose one over the other based on priorities or budget constraints, but many opt for both services to get the combined benefits of optimal IT management and robust cybersecurity.


 The Bottom Line

Both MSP and MSSP services are essential for better data and customer management in your business. To determine which one suits your needs, evaluate your priorities, as the consequences of not having either MSP or MSSP can be dire and costly. Mishaps or attacks can devastate your business’s data and technology. It’s crucial to understand that MSP and MSSP are not entirely interchangeable, and companies should be aware of the services they need to prioritize and implement.

If your company needs both services, consider partnering with a single IT company that functions as both an MSP and MSSP. CSPi Technology Solutions, for example, offers comprehensive IT consultation where we assess your needs and provide insights into the best IT management solution for your business. Making informed choices about MSP and MSSP services can significantly impact the security and efficiency of your company.

Learn More