Blog: IT Consulting

Virtual CISO Consulting Services

April 5, 2017 - by Synoptek

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Top 10 reasons you need a Virtual CISO

They are not the reasons you would expect to see

The demand for Virtual CISO (Chief Information Security Officer) Consulting Services is growing every month at Synoptek. The bottom line is: Cybersecurity is more important as the number, and complexity, of cyber threats, are increasing daily. Most organizations can’t afford a dedicated IT Cybersecurity Team, training and all of the tools needed to assure compliance and protection. The more sophisticated the threats, the more complex the response and skills of the responders. This is what clients are telling us they want in a vCISO:

  1. We need someone with experience, total IT security dedication, and awareness
  2. We need a “vendor neutral” perspective
  3. We don’t need another Executive position
  4. Our Cybersecurity programs need focus, but not full-time
  5. We can’t identify what Cybersecurity services we need, want to use, must have
  6. We are not skilled enough to sort through all of the Cybersecurity vendors
  7. We need a Security Consultant to look at “our” needs, not just sell us security services
  8. Our Board needs to know our cyber risk management programs are equal to or better than our competitors
  9. We need to be assured we are compliant and keeping up with new regulations and changes
  10. We want to get a good nights sleep

What is a Virtual CISO?

The Synoptek Virtual CISO (vCISO) Consulting Services provides organizations with a Virtual Chief Information Security Officer with the executive leadership and skills to help plan, define, and execute a unique security strategy. The Virtual CISO serves as an invaluable asset for your team to ensure the highest levels of security in terms of people, process, and technology.


vCISO Benefits – What Should You Get?

Virtual CISO Consulting Services provides your company with a senior executive that is well versed in risk management and possesses a strong background in IT leadership. The vCISO engages with your organization on a regular basis to define and implement security, compliance, and governance policies and procedures.

Get the benefit of having a dedicated, executive Cybersecurity resource while saving time and financial investments.  Synoptek vCISO Consulting Services are:

  • Cost-effective
    • Driving IT Security processes and programs while costing about 40% of an average CISO’s salary.
  • Deliver Industry Expertise and Knowledge
    • Synoptek’s vCISOs have consulting experience with environments across multiple industries that allow them to assist you using a more customized approach.
  • Provide Instant Value
    • Synoptek’s vCISOs’ extensive IT Security experience permits them to quickly deliver results, value, and protection.
  • Flexibility
    • Gain the ability to align your business with a solution that scales to your needs recognizing your existing security tools and budget constraints.
  • Vendor neutrality
    • Benefit from a “vendor neutral” approach to technology, Synoptek’s vCISOs make recommendations based on your needs, not a hidden agenda.
  • Adaptive, not Reactive
    • Cybersecurity threats are always evolving and expanding. Synoptek’s vCISOs hold a number of certifications and constantly in training to help clients address new threats.


Three Reasons to Outsource IT Security to your Managed Service Provider Using a vCISO

vCISO Consulting services should be provided by a firm with extensive “operational” IT security experience in a number of different environments. Synoptek vCISO Consulting Services are provided by executive-level security experts with that kind of experience. Below are three reasons organizations would be wise to consider using vCISO services and outsourcing their IT security to a Managed Service Provider (MSP) from MSPMentor.

Extensive Resources

60% of IT decision-makers reported that they believed their businesses were more vulnerable to a cyber attack because they lack the necessary resources to maintain their defenses. To get enterprise-grade Cybersecurity, businesses would have to make a significant investment to purchase all of the necessary equipment, software, and personnel to manage it. Because many businesses can’t afford that expense, teaming up with an MSP is a great way to get enterprise-grade security at a more affordable price because they already have the resources.

Better Preparation

Nearly half of survey respondents said that they felt unprepared to deal with insider threats and 45% said they were unprepared for unsecured internal or external networks. Preparedness is key for any good IT security solution. MSPs are prepared. Because they work with many clients and manage the IT security for many different types of business, they have the experience and expertise to make sure any business is prepared for cyber-threats. They can also help SMBs understand the various types of cyber-threats and help them be prepared for them.


A third of survey respondents said that they juggle multiple IT responsibilities in addition to handling IT security. There are many different specialties when it comes to IT. Smaller businesses can often only afford a small number of IT professionals that have to handle all of the IT needs for that business. With an MSP, you have people who specialize in Cybersecurity. Businesses can choose how much they want to invest. They can hire an MSP to handle their security freeing up their IT people to handle other IT responsibilities, or they can hire an MSP to managed all of their IT needs.


Benefits of Using Synoptek MSP as an IT Security Services Provider

The advantages of using a Managed Services Provider is to use their investment in tools, expertise and trained staff to outsource IT functions. Using trained server expertise, help desk personnel and cloud engineers makes sense for most organizations that do not have the budget to create the breadth and depth needed in many IT disciplines. The same logic applies to IT security. Using trained IT Security professionals using the latest tools for intrusion detection and protection offers organizations better IT security protection that if they did this “in-house”. For example, the following are the IT Security Skills represented by the Synoptek team:

IT Security Skills

  • M.S.I.S.A- Masters of Science, Information Security, and Assurance
  • CISSP- Certified Information Systems Security Professional
  • C|EH Certified Ethical Hacker
  • C|HFI Certified Hacking Forensic Investigator
  • CCNA- Cisco Certification- Certified Cisco Network Associate
  • CCNP- Cisco Certification – Certified Cisco Network Professional

Synoptek’s Virtual CISO works directly with each client to:

  1. Conduct initial planning, such as establishing timelines, document scope and confirming your objectives
  2. Conduct an initial IT security audit
  3. Determining the level of acceptable risk, identifying critical assets
  4. Aligning your business strategy with IT security policies
  5. Conduct regular and thorough information gathering sessions
  6. Define and develop key IT security policy components
  7. Roles & Responsibilities
  8. Network and Security Topological Architecture Diagrams
  9. Remote Access policies and process
  10. Compliance management
  11. Risk management
  12. Third-Party security controls
  13. Security operations processes
  14. Access Control
  15. Personnel Security and Training
  16. Security Response Plan
  17. Application Security
  18. System Security
  19. Network Security
  20. Acceptable Use

CISO Salary – What will you save?

Six-figure salaries are the norm for Chief Information Security Officers in the United States, with median pay hovering around $153K per year. Total incomes of Chief Information Security Officers incorporate the potential for, in a few cases, more than $52K from bonuses and close to $26K from profit sharing; these performance components cause packages to range between $106K and $251K. Residence and experience level each impact pay for this group, with the former having the largest influence. Job satisfaction is high, and work is enjoyable for most Chief Information Security Officers. Almost all get medical and dental insurance, and a significant number get vision plans, too. This overview is based on answers to PayScale’s updated 2017 salary questionnaire. states; Many organizations are asking other executives to step into the gap and they often lack the expertise required to outline a solid information security policy and drive it forward. There may be areas of your business where you can afford to have employees feeling their way and learning through trial and error, but security is not one of them.

“For small to mid-sized businesses it may be difficult to justify the expense of a full-time CISO,” says Candy Alexander, CISSP, CISM and Boston GRC consultant. “Recruitment can also be a real challenge. How do you find the right fit for your business within your budget when you lack the internal experience to properly evaluate a candidate?”

The Bottom Line on IT Security

By using Synoptek’s vCISO services, you can immediately access the skills and experience you need to make sure you are managing your IT risk effectively. You can save significant money that can be reallocated to actual IT Security protection tools and services.


InfoSecurity Magazine:

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