Small businesses value MSPs most for threat prevention support


Thought Leadership

Small businesses value MSPs most for threat prevention support


According to the FBI’s IC3 and other industry reports, cyberattacks are now the fastest growing crime in the U.S. and are said to be the greatest threat to businesses around the world. Last year, a ransomware attack with a $51,000 bitcoin demand from cybercriminals on the city of Atlanta was estimated to have cost taxpayers a whopping $17 million.

Facing growing and increasingly costly cyberthreats, small-to-medium-sized business (SMBs) in the U.S. report they feel underprepared and outmatched by cybercriminals. In a recent survey of 1,035 SMB executives and IT decision makers, AppRiver finds:

only 47% give themselves a positive rating for cyberthreat readiness,58% fear their technology and prevention strategies are not sophisticated enough to face cybercriminals who attack them, and77% say they believe their cybersecurity partners are vital to their business success

This means managed service providers (MSPs) must also take note and anticipate their clients’ shifting demands. While many small businesses feel self-sufficient with their office productivity needs, more SMBs increasingly turn to their MSPs as educators, protectors and mitigaters of potential cyberattacks. 

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In AppRiver’s Q2 2019 Cyberthreat Index for Business Survey, more SMB decision makers say they rely on their MSPs for threat prevention support than for any other key services:

43% say they value and rely on their MSPs most for threat prevention support25% say they value and rely on their MSPs most for network monitoring and visibility support16% each say they most value support for collecting and analyzing data, and access and device management

Verticals that report to be most in need of threat prevention support from their MSPs include business services and consulting, hospitality, manufacturing, marketing and media, nonprofit, and the transportation and logistics sectors. 

As businesses continue to migrate to the Cloud, they will need to rely more heavily on the experience and expertise of MSPs to ensure their security posture is appropriate for today’s threat landscape. Businesses must be intentional in selecting MSPs that are security focused. “We hear from many businesses that have moved to O365 and find themselves exposed to unfamiliar attacks – such as spearphishing – when they are not adequately protected for today’s threat environment. This is an unchartered territory many of them are not prepared for, and have MSPs that are also not equipped to support,” said Troy Gill, Senior Security Analyst at AppRiver. “We can help these businesses mitigate current and future threats, but unfortunately, very often, it is only after considerable damage – quite often to the tune of tens of thousands of dollars – has already been done by the time they come to us.”{{cta('b71ecf2e-e2ba-4f6f-97e4-7b19dbd293ec','justifycenter')}}


The AppRiver Cyberthreat Index for Business Survey is one of the most comprehensive cybersecurity attitudinal surveys of the U.S. business community, generating participation in Q2 2019 from 1,035 small-to-medium sized business leaders and IT decision makers, among which 80 percent hold CEO, president, owner, head of IT, or equivalent titles. To see more findings from the survey or learn about its methodology, Please visit