“We spent so much time building campaigns and content with our previous security awareness vendor, sacrificing the ability to focus on other areas of our business. When we had to build the campaigns ourselves, we also ran into the problem of maintaining consistency. Now that we have Arctic Wolf Managed Security Awareness, we never have to worry whether continuous learning is taking place and we don’t have to worry about it taking a toll on our workload.”
— Marquis Suber, Managing Consultant, k_Street Consulting, LLC
As a managed IT services provider (MSP) with more than a decade’s experience in and around Washington D.C., many of k_Street Consulting’s clients depend on the firm for all things technology related. When they were victimized by bad actors and their systems were compromised, k_Street would let them know what happened and come in and try to clean things up.
However, as social engineering cyberattacks became more prevalent and clients looked to k_Street for help, the firm realized it would need to become more proactive than reactive with clients concerning cybersecurity. It needed to find a partner to help deliver a security awareness program that would educate its customers’ employees to better protect them and validate the trust the MSP has earned from these customers over the past decade.
Three Key Considerations: Fully Managed, Engaging, and Effective
For MSPs like k_Street, whose clients rely on them for all things computer related, cybersecurity can be a dealmaker or dealbreaker. “Our clients expect us to keep their technology safe and operational,” says k_Street Managing Consultant Marquis Suber. “That includes ensuring employees aren’t deceived by phishing and social engineering attacks, and are able to avoid making simple mistakes that can lead to dire consequences.”
As clients increasingly turned to k_Street for help as they learned more about the dangers of the threat landscape through news headlines or their own unfortunate experiences, the firm sought to find the right partner to help it deliver a security awareness solution. For several months it tried a training program from a well-known security software provider, but the results were far from optimal. “Our experience was exhausting. It required too much work to build and run the security awareness program,” Suber says. “Between curating, publishing, and delivering monthly courses, it became a fulltime job in itself.”
While k_Street needed a more manageable program that it could easily deploy to customers, there were other considerations. Most important, it needed an effective solution that raised the cyber hygiene practices of clients to better protect them. As Suber says, “Many of our clients didn’t understand the way social engineering works, and were shocked to find how one individual’s mistake could dearly cost their entire organization. We knew the way to keep their employees safe is with education, education, education.” However, for the education to take, he knew that the security awareness content would need to engage users across a variety of vertical markets without overwhelming them. Only then would clients achieve their desired outcome.
Arctic Wolf’s Solution Proves the Perfect Fit
While k_Street struggled along with their previous security awareness tool, Managing Partner David Kelly saw an Arctic Wolf® Managed Security Awareness presentation during a virtual conference and quickly understood the value it offered as a fully managed solution with multitenant features. For the MSP, this was a huge win, as it meant it could offer a regular, ongoing cadence of security awareness training without having to curate and customize the program’s content.
For Suber, the fact that he and his team wouldn’t need to toil for endless hours retooling the solution was just the start. He also was impressed not just with the content itself, but how it strategically aligns with k_Street’s own approach to educating clients in ways that work within their busy schedule. Arctic Wolf’s bite-sized, microlearning lessons, which are no more than three minutes, are the “spoonful of sugar that makes the medicine go down,” says Suber. “With other solutions, people would quit at around the five-minute mark, and then often skip the next month’s lesson when it arrived.”
What’s more, Suber is a fan of how Managed Security Awareness content instructs users, rather than tricks them, so the lessons they learn have a more lasting effect. “Arctic Wolf’s approach is a no-shame zone,” he says. “The program weaves regular phishing simulations along with immediate remediation content into its lessons so participants become better at assessing emails rather than becoming leery and not interacting with them for fear of being caught.”
k_Street Sees Better Performance and Better Outcomes
As a fully managed program for security awareness training, Arctic Wolf Managed Security Awareness is invaluable to the MSP as it allows the company to deliver the solution without requiring a herculean effort on its part. That has helped k_Street quickly improve its clients’ cyber hygiene in and of itself. “We spent so much time building campaigns and content with our previous security awareness vendor, sacrificing the ability to focus on other areas of our business. When we had to build the campaigns ourselves, we also ran into the problem of maintaining consistency,” Suber says. “Now that we have Arctic Wolf Managed Security Awareness, we never have to worry whether continuous learning is taking place and we don’t have to worry about it taking a toll on our workload.”
But it’s the content, delivered at consistent intervals, that Suber sees as really driving the positive change in employee cybersecurity behavior. “We’re getting twice the participation we had previously because the awareness content is so consistent and doesn’t require much time from the participant,” he says. “It’s that consistency that wins the brain. With the ongoing training, people are better prepared to recognize cyberthreats when they appear and less likely to fall victim to an attack.”
Arctic Wolf’s bite-sized, microlearning lessons, which are no more than three minutes, are the “spoonful of sugar that makes the medicine go down.”
— Marquis Suber, Managing Consultant, k_Street Consulting, LLC