How a Cybersecurity MSP Uses Deep Ticket Integration as a Competitive Advantage 

NVISO case study

NVISO is a global cybersecurity company based in Brussels, Belgium with offices around Europe. It helps its customers prevent, detect, and respond to security issues in an optimal way to achieve, what they call, a stronger security posture. 

As a Managed Security Service Provider, NVISO provides professional services ranging from security design and assessment to incident response and threat hunting.

They have a 24/7 incident hotline in place meaning that the customers can get emergency support whenever there is a breach or a security issue. 

NVISO has also designed a third-party risk assurance framework that includes the initial evaluation of the risk profile of the supplier. It is used to tailor the depth of the assessment and can also optimize the cost of each assessment. 

When it comes to integrating multiple systems, especially in the context of cross-company integration, security becomes a highly critical issue for a lot of users. As an experienced expert in the field, NVISO aims to address these security risks by ensuring that communication between any two parties is safeguarded. 

Alexander Sinno, Head of Managed Security Services and specialist in building cybersecurity fusion centers at NVISO, tells us more about his experience with Exalate and why it has been a good fit for their set of tools in the cybersecurity domain. 

Why Exalate? 
• Smoother, streamlined yet secure communication with customers 
• Cost effectiveness 
• High customization  
• Frictionless experience  
• Workflow optimization 
• Ecosystem benefits
• Excellent support 

Challenges 

• Communication gap between the MSP and customers 
• Security risk of single-point contact 
• Ticket-based security incident management 
• Learning curve and frustration of adding another ITSM tool 

Before adopting an integration solution, the typical workflow for NVISO was to raise a security incident to a customer mainly through tickets and emails. Which actually came at the risk of being reliant on a single point of contact instead. 

It was much more efficient for NVISO to have multiple points of contact to ensure that somebody would pick up that ticket, add it as a task, and start the communication. That could allow for immediate ticket creation in their customer’s ITSM ticketing tool so they could easily communicate back to their analysts by raising a comment in their own tool. 

The analyst would then respond back to the customer by placing different types of attachments for the customers to see. Since the customer could also raise attachments back to NVISO, the process would be a lot less confusing for both sides. 

With the fast-paced growth in the work management systems, it’s crucial to have an integration solution in place. Everybody has their own solution and workflow and they wouldn’t want just to leave their environment and work in a new one. 

Alexander explains that some organizations already have 2-3 ITSM tools, adding yet another tool was an option for them since it can quickly get frustrating and messy as they’d need to learn how the new tool works. 

That’s why it made more sense to stick to their own tool and integrate it with the other one(s). 

Solutions 

• Building an in-house integration solution 
• Adopting an integration solution 

So NVISO started the integration journey by building its own solution. The solution actually worked but the maintenance was quite expensive and it made more sense to work with a partner like Exalate who had a lot of experience in the field and was overall more cost-effective. 

The reason why NVISO started using Exalate in the first place was to give their customers the autonomy of staying their own tool while integrating with NVISO’s Jira. Because their customers wanted to give NVISO access to their essential data without going back and forth via email. And that could simply be implemented by an integration solution like Exalate. 

“We have had an excellent customer experience with Exalate. They are always responsive and ready to resolve any problems we or our customers might face.”

Alexander Sinno, Head of Managed Security Services – NVISO

It was highly crucial for NVISO to make sure data was handled properly due to GDPR and data residency purposes, especially since they dealt with customers’ security incidents.

“The advantage of Exalate’s decentralized architecture is that it’s not like a new learning curve for the customers to get into a new platform and figure out how they need to operate. They can just operate as they normally do, and that makes a huge impact on the overall outcome of security incidents.” 

Alexander Sinno, Head of Managed Security Services – NVISO

Results 

• Autonomy (working from the comfort of a familiar environment)  
• Cost effectiveness 
• Workflow optimization
• Easy network expansion 

NVISO works with customers who use multiple task management systems like Jira and ServiceNow. They manage their security incidents and take care of their cybersecurity in general. And as Exalate grows and supports more platforms, NVISO will build new service templates to ensure that each customer’s integration looks exactly the same depending on the tool they use.

A lot of MSPs face some difficulty when it comes to ITSM syncing. But for NVISO, Exalate soon became a differentiating value since they were able to approach their customers using their own ITSM through Exalate. 

“Exalate is a competitive advantage for us as an MSSP since it enables us to have a close and smooth collaboration with our customers and find workaround bottlenecks. That is something both sides appreciate a lot because we are not merely another partner to our customers but are in fact an extension of their team. And that is NVISO’s strategic vision as a managed security services provider.”

Alexander Sinno, Head of Managed Security Services – NVISO

Now everything could be handled in a clear two-way communication between the MSSP and the customers. That has specifically made the whole process a lot smoother for their customers. 

Since customers don’t need to switch or log in to another tool and can have NVISO take care of their incidents via Exalate, they are actually interested in implementing such an integration. 

“Expanding the network is quite easy with Exalate. Every customer wants this, so I could see that in the future we have the majority of our customers on Exalate moving forward because that’s the most optimal way for us to work with them.”

Alexander Sinno, Head of Managed Security Services – NVISO

Measurable Benefits 

Being able to implement ITSM integration is actually a competitive advantage for NVISO as they can have a closer relationship with their customers. It’s like they’re just another person in their ticketing tool, having a conversation. 

On the other hand from an operational perspective, it’s quite efficient for the analysts to be able to talk directly to multiple people (or a team of people) who are in one ticket queue in their ITSM syncing tools, their process, or their workflow that they are used to.  

“The fact that Exalate is a very extensible and flexible product is quite an impressive feature for us. We can even build our own integration on top of it, and it actually shows that the developers and the engineers behind the product do really know what they are doing. Plus we have had an excellent customer experience.”

Alexander Sinno, Head of Managed Security Services – NVISO

Typical Use Case 

One of the most typical use cases NVISO implements with Exalate for all its customers (as an MSSP) is to automatically generate tickets for them so then they can easily sync comments, attachments, statuses, etc between platforms. 

They have actually made a template out of this (platform specific) and they keep this template consistent so they can use it for the new customers who join their Exalate ecosystem. 

NVISO actually positions itself as the central hub (working in Jira) and using Exalate, connects to its customers (who are mostly on ServiceNow).

A Network of Connected Companies

As NVISO keeps expanding its Exalate network, more customers are proactively asking to join the network since the communication between the service provider and the customers is handled much more smoothly. 

“Exalate is stable, flexible, customizable, and pretty easy to set up and use. And that is just what we need to expand our network.”

Alexander Sinno, Head of Managed Security Services – NVISO

Alexander explains that NVISO has got a lot on its roadmap, like expanding into monitoring for ICS (Industrial Control System), helping customers protect the power grid and the natural gas line, and things like that. They are counting on Exalate as the streamliner between them and their different security services. 

They are also looking to expand their network with Exalate so that they won’t only communicate with one team but with multiple ones in different companies. In a way that the right team (the owner of the asset) can be contacted at the right time when needed.

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