Ziff Davis Internet
News & Resources for the IT Reseller
NewsReviewsTech AnalysisCommentarySecurityLinux/Unix
My Account |  

Security Breach Notification Legislation Will Boost MSPs
By John Hazard


In the California Senate, it went by the name SB1386. It was A4001 in the New Jersey Assembly. The U.S. House of Representatives calls it HR3997, and the Senate S1789.

ADVERTISEMENT

Whatever the anonymous title, all fall under the category of data security breach notification bills sweeping Capitol Hill and statehouses nationwide, and each could represent a boost for the managed services model.

Each bill defines a business' liability and obligations in the event a security breach releases personal data of employees and customers, such as social security numbers or credit card account information. More than two dozen states have passed similar bills and the House and Senate bills are nearing a vote.

MSPs (management service providers) and consultants at the MSP Alliance Expo on March 27 and 28 in Orlando said the legislative downpour that followed several high-profile data leaks will drive users to the MSP model that embraces proactive maintenance and liability on the part of the solution provider for resulting failures.

"Break fix shops aren't in a position to provide relief or the solution the client needs in this situation," said Charles R. Weaver, president of the MSP Alliance.

eWEEK.com Special Report: Enterprise, Government Team for Security

"MSPs are proactive. It's in their core to prevent breaches. Traditional VARs are reactive. You can't pick up the phone and tell a break fix gut you need (data security protection) today; you need it everyday."

Financial services giant Fidelity Investments confirmed March 23 that a laptop containing the personal information of almost 200,000 Hewlett-Packard employees was stolen from its property.

In recent weeks alone, firms including CitiBank, Ernst & Young and the New York Times have reported significant customer information breaches.

The Service Level Agreement that binds MSPs to performance standards presents a double-edged sword in light of the new legal territory, said Robert J. Scott, managing partner of Scott & Scott, of Dallas, a law firm representing IT firms and MSPs.

"MSPs are by virtue of their relationship (with the customer) bound to protect the data, as much as the business," he said.

The bond would be a selling point to businesses who know the MSP will not abandon the duty and a legal liability should a breach occur, Scott said.

     
Email


TALKBACK

MICROSOFT RESOURCE CENTER
Help boost your sales with BONUS PACKS.
Let BONUS PACKS help you sell more PCs—with up to $1,200 in valuable products and services. Visit
Buy Local Partner site >>

Join the Microsoft Empower program for ISVs.
A relationship with Microsoft allows you to compete with the big dogs. Learn more about resources, tools and training. Get the documentation >>

Piracy hurts your bottom line.
But it's going to hurt pirates even more—eight new piracy lawsuits were filed in March. See who's on the list. >>
Free Hands-On Training Lab
Find out how key features of SBS 2003 can help you open up a new line of revenue. Register now >>


SBS 2003 Sales Reference Card
This handy reference card contains features at a glance, sales objection handling, pricing guidelines & more. Get it now >>


Microsoft Empower for ISVs rewards your big idea with big benefits and support.
Access key development tools at a low cost to help you develop that idea into an innovative application. Learn more >>



ATTN: SOLUTION PROVIDERS
Autotask makes your IT business run. Better!
  • Manage your entire business from a single integrated system accessed over the web
  • Track and control service tickets, and efficiently dispatch field service techs
  • Monitor and analyze project profitability by project, customer and type
  • Bill by fixed price, time & materials, block hours or retainers
  • Set up workflow rules and automated notifications
  • Nothing to install. Easy to use. Affordable.
Click here ONLY if you want a personalized demo via the web
(North America only, please)


Attention Microsoft Solution Providers!



Want to gain a competitive edge? Try Microsoft Watch – FREE!



Each week you receive:
  • Microsoft News and Insider Information
  • Expert Analysis
  • Code Names of Upcoming MS Products
  • Year-Ahead Calendar, updated monthly



    Click Here to sign up now for your FREE 14 Day Trial to Microsoft Watch.

  • POPULAR TOPICS
    SPECIAL REPORTS
    White Boxes
    MS vs. IBM
    Linux in the Channel
    Network
    CHANNEL RSS FEED
    Stay in the Zone
    Put The Channel Insider on your desktop.
    FREE NEWSLETTERS
    Subscribe to The Channel Insider: Channel News, Reviews, Resources and more.

    Make your selections below:


    Contract Watch

    The Channel Insider Update

    Preferred e-mail format:

    Enter your e-mail:


    view all newsletters >>
    Channel Insider Quick Links
    Ziff Davis Footer Logo