Let’s start with a simple but harsh fact: If you say you’re protecting your customers’ networks but you’re not managing their Apple devices, then you’re lying to them and to yourself!
Over the years, hackers have targeted everything from HVAC machines (Target) to fish tank thermometers (an unnamed Las Vegas casino) and a whole host of devices in between to prise their way into company networks.
Let’s stop for a minute to consider that fact.
The Perils of an Unpatched Mac
What do you think is easier to break into, a fish tank thermometer or an unpatched Mac sitting on your customer’s network?
Sure, hacks through fish tank thermometers make the news because they’re so interesting and rare. Still, most hacks are coming through cybercriminals scanning networks for known vulnerabilities that are unpatched on networks. If your customer has Macs on their network—even if it’s just a couple in a particular department—and you’re not patching them, then guess what? You’ve got a potentially serious vulnerability.
And if you think that just leaving Mac updating to the end user is OK, you’re really leaving a ticking time bomb on the network—especially if they haven’t updated their machine in a while and they’ve still got instances of Flash or Java on there! These things are gifts to hackers looking to get into your customers’ networks.
The real point here is that Macs are still just computers. OK, if you’re used to PCs they may look and behave a little differently, but they still have vulnerabilities that need to be updated. As I mentioned in my previous blog, even Apple admits that its security in macOS is not up to the level of security in iOS.
Data Loss on Macs is a Real Business Threat
On top of that, they need to be monitored and backed up. Many people who don’t fully understand the Apple ecosystem think everything is fine because Macs have their own built-in backup through Time Machine.
While that’s true, in my opinion, Time Machine over a network can be flaky, and you still have to monitor it to make sure everything is backed up correctly. It’s like any other backup: It’s only a backup if you make sure it actually worked!
Of course, you could counter that by saying people should be saving to a server. And, to a certain extent, you’re right: People should be saving to the server. But are you enforcing that? If a C-level exec comes to you saying that—for whatever reason—they’ve lost a really important file from their desktop, turning around and saying, “I’m sorry; we don’t have a backup of that because you should have saved it onto the server,” isn’t going to win you any friends.
Also, consider this other scenario. Time Machine typically doesn’t back up to the cloud; instead, it is a local backup on local disk attached to a machine or stored somewhere on the LAN. What happens if the building burns down, there’s a flood, or some other form of natural disaster like a hurricane? All the Mac desktops have gone and so have all the Time Machine backups. All your customer’s Mac-based data is gone, and you’re the ones they’re going to be asking how and why this happened.
If you’re effectively managing Macs, none of this should be a problem for you and your customer will be happy. And happy customers are good for MSP business.
On top of reducing vulnerabilities, there is a compelling business case to add Mac support to your service offering—which is also good for business.
With Mac management through N-able N-sight, you can keep ALL your customers’ devices under management and keep your customers happy using one platform. Find out more here.
Looking for more on managing Macs and other Apple devices? Check out the Mac Support section of our blog.
Brian Best is Senior Product Manager at N-able. Read more N-able guest blogs here. Regularly contributed guest blogs are part of ChannelE2E’s sponsorship program.