Tech

The Questions To Ask Your Security As A Service Provider

Security as a Service (SaaS) is an affordable and effective outsourcing model for business security management.  A large potion of these services involve standard applications such as anti-virus software which is delivered by cloud computing, but the term can also refer to in-house security management which is provided by a third party organization.

Why Choose Security As A Service?

There are a number of reasons why more organizations are choosing cloud-based SECaaS over other forms of network security.

  • Outsourcing security and administrative tasks saves organisations time and money
  • Outsourcing allows business owners and managers to place greater focus on the company’s core competencies
  • Users receive constant security updates
  • Users can perform some in-house administration tasks while also being able to regularly view the security environment and what is happening within it

Keep in mind that not every vendor who provides SaaS will be able to deliver these benefits as not every solution is as effective or as suitable for your business as the next.  To find the right solution for your business, you need to ask the following questions:

Can You Demonstrate Your Product?

The solution may look great on paper, but the real proof that it works is in its demonstration.  Ask the vendor for relevant examples of the product in action and how it delivered value.  The vendor should be proud to share how other customers have used the same solution to solve the business challenges you’re hoping to address.

Most vendors will happily provide you with customer references, but if they don’t offer them, do not be afraid to ask for them.  Tap into your own network as well and try to obtain additional references.

Can I Try Before I Buy?

Testing the product first can help allay any hesitation you may be feeling prior to signing a contract.  Ask the vendor if you will be able to try their enterprise anti malware and other facets of the solution.  Some offer trial periods for free, while others may require you to pay for the implementation services associated with the pilot version of the product.

Is The Contract Flexible?

A number of bad licensing practices have cropped up in the realm of on-premises enterprise software, and they are now sneaking their way into the cloud.  By subscribing to cloud computing, users are supposed to be able to avoid perpetual and financially draining licensing lock-ins.  These are the questions you need to ask to ensure that the contract you are signing is flexible and that you receive price protection:

  • Does your company provide a standard annual termination of the contract?
  • Does your company provide annual usage-level alignment to address our business needs?
  • Can I rollover monthly usage to cover seasonal peaks?
  • Does your company provide long-term price protection?

The nature of cloud computing has changed the way that software is being used and acquired.  Make sure that you are not being locked in to the old subscription model by being stuck with a perpetual license agreement.

References:

http://www.allot.com/products/security/websafe-business/

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Marketing Manager, Allot Communications.

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