Jan 09 2024

Strengthen Your Cybersecurity with Managed Patching as a Service

Keeping security patches current is one key way to protect your K–12 organization’s data and devices.

When defending overwhelming amounts of data in an ever-shifting threat landscape, cybersecurity can feel like an elusive goal. And the past few years have introduced a combination of factors that only exacerbate that feeling.

With more student devices and digital learning tools, many schools are now operating in the cloud, with some managing data and workloads in multiple clouds.

“The cloud computing landscape is as dynamic as the weather,” Google notes in a blog post. “As the pace of innovation in the cloud and the availability of new tools and services continues to explode, Gartner forecasts worldwide public cloud end-user spending to reach nearly $600 billion in 2023.”

With data created from an increasing number of devices and being managed in an expansive environment, some statistics indicate that cybersecurity is weakened in the cloud.

According to a press release on a recent study by Thales, “More than a third (39 percent) of businesses have experienced a data breach in their cloud environment last year, an increase on the 35 percent reported in 2022.” IBM’s Cost of a Data Breach Report 2023 additionally found that cloud breaches were among the most expensive, averaging $4.75 million. This is 30 percent more expensive than the average cost of a data breach in education in 2023.

Click the banner to learn how managed services can lighten the load of your cybersecurity staff.

Patch Management Is a Fundamental Part of Cybersecurity

IBM defines patch management as “the process of applying vendor-issued updates to close security vulnerabilities and optimize the performance of software and devices. Patch management is sometimes considered a part of vulnerability management.”

Ramana Reddy Depa
Because the threat landscape keeps expanding and evolving, and attacks are different every day, a lot of organizations are struggling to keep up.”

Ramana Reddy Depa Global Head of Strategy for Managed Services, CDW

IBM notes the risk of not keeping security patches current: “Hackers can exploit vulnerabilities in a company's IT environment to launch cyberattacks and spread malware. Vendors release updates, called ‘patches,’ to fix these vulnerabilities. However, the patching process can interrupt workflows and create downtime. Patch management aims to minimize that downtime by streamlining patch deployment.” 

MORE ON EDTECH: Automated patch management propels K–12 cybersecurity.

Focusing on security fundamentals like patching can be the strongest defense against these types of attacks. With a strong endpoint patching program in place, schools can reduce their chances of becoming another statistic.

How Managed Services Can Bolster Your Cybersecurity

Managed security services have always been a powerful weapon in the cybersecurity arsenal. But as attacks become increasingly sophisticated and schools struggle to employ skilled cybersecurity staff, the assistance of a trusted partner is more valuable than ever.

According to Ramana Reddy Depa, CDW’s global head of strategy for managed services, “Cybersecurity, obviously, is a huge thing. Because the threat landscape keeps expanding and evolving, and attacks are different every day, a lot of organizations are struggling to keep up.”

DIVE DEEPER: Discover the essentials of protecting your organization in the cloud.

For organizations that may not have the staff, expertise or resources to adequately defend themselves, Depa recommends managed services such as managed detection, backup and response.

Updating software and devices with appropriate patches is another area where managed services can lighten the load of an already overworked cybersecurity staff. Visibility is critical to building a comprehensive strategy and executable patch management solution. Managed Patching as a Service can help organizations gain insight into their current IT environments so they can identify assets, assess vulnerabilities and develop an effective patch management strategy.

UP NEXT: Multiple cloud backup systems help K–12 leaders rest easy.

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Learn from Your Peers

What can you glean about security from other IT pros? Check out new CDW research and insight from our experts.