The pandemic-driven shift to WFH and remote workplaces has presented challenges and opportunities to the business community and MSPs. Parallel to these shifts, the demand for online options is rapidly growing thanks to the ongoing cloud and mobile transformation, as well as consumer desires for purchasing goods and services online. Approximately $2 billion in mobile transactions were processed in 2020, increasing 22% from 2019, according to the State of the Industry Report on Mobile Money 2021 published by the GSM Association. People’s confidence in using apps and the internet for conducting more, if not most, of their transactions is flourishing.
However, the risks of a payment data breach also rise as more organizations move their payment systems online or leverage mobile apps and other non-traditional platforms for transactions. The numbers are staggering—nearly 75% of businesses say they had been targets or victims of payment scams, according to a recent survey by the Association of Financial Professionals.
As cybersecurity thought leaders, MSPs must be actively involved in assessing the threats related to these evolving systems and processes for clients and themselves. Implementing platforms and services to mitigate those potential liabilities can also be a profitable opportunity for IT providers to increase their MRR.
Security is an All-Encompassing and Ever-Expanding Discipline
Payment-related data is one of the top prizes for cybercriminals. They can quickly and easily convert that information into cash or use it to acquire resalable goods or services. While conversations in the IT industry focus on MSPs’ networks being the “keys to the kingdom,” credit and banking data remain the low-hanging fruit that most cybercriminals treasure and regularly target.
The good news for IT professionals is that virtually every technology-based problem has a solution they can deliver. Payment security concerns are not a new concept to businesses and should be considered a natural extension of MSPs’ data protection practices. However, for many providers, that situation hasn’t always been the case.
Payment processing had often been pigeonholed in the specialized support category, much like telephone equipment, multi-function printers, and video surveillance and security solutions. In most cases, IT services professionals did their thing and other firms handled those areas and only intersected when there was a problem with computer settings, network configurations, or security. Cloud and technology advances have blurred those lines.
In today’s virtual world, with VoIP and other IP-enabled options, MSPs can virtually do it all with little, if any, outside help. Those capabilities are critically important with the rise of ransomware and highly sophisticated cybercriminal syndicates, and the incremental revenue from each new opportunity helps pad providers’ bottom lines. The breadth and complexity of the risks associated with online payments deserve the MSP community’s attention and advanced skills and resources. Payment security might not be in your current stack alongside other cybersecurity offerings. But it can and should be.
Expanding the Security Services Stack
Many business owners expect their IT services partners to provide comprehensive network and data protection. Unfortunately, that makes it easy for clients to assume an attack on any part of their payment processing system is the responsibility of their MSP—even if they were never entrusted with securing those processes OR technologies. There’s been a disconnect between security technology providers, payment processing providers, and the businesses that use the payment products. But providers often get the blame for things that fall through the cracks.
Payment security, at first glance, seems outside the traditional scope of MSP cybersecurity offerings. Because SMBs already believe it’s within range, IT providers should capitalize on that perception. IT services firms can offer tremendous value by leveraging their own expertise and the expertise of their partners to bring better risk reduction to the areas where payments and security overlap. Most business owners are willing to invest in cost-effective solutions that address newly discovered vulnerabilities. Bringing those issues to their attention is the first step in that process.
Proactively identifying payment environment weaknesses and promoting a secure payment platform that addresses clients’ needs and concerns fills an important gap and simultaneously drives valuable new MRR for MSPs.
Secure Payments by ConnectBooster creates a profitable, unique proposition for IT services firms. A simple assessment based on PCI DSS best practices and other standards, provided by Secure Payments, allows MSPs to quickly evaluate and address the security, compliance, and optimization of their clients’ payment landscapes and offer a solution.
Strengthening the payment landscape helps protect customer credit and banking data. Many companies end up storing some if not all of that valuable information in less-than-optimal systems with no consideration for PCI compliance standards. 88% of SMBs were found to have unencrypted payment information stored in their environments. That data is a prime target for theft, ransomware and other cyberattacks. The Secure Payments solution gives MSPs the tools to avoid these situations and effectively guide customers to reduce their cyber liabilities and compliance issues.
Point-to-point encryption, tokenization, EMV chip acceptance, PCI DSS Compliance, and other methods for protecting PII (Personal Identifiable Information) make this possible.
Start managing the growing payment threat environment for your clients by partnering with Secure Payments by ConnectBooster and get paid for doing so.