When purchasing an antivirus solution for your managed service provider (MSP) business, it’s important to consider the individual requirements of your MSP to understand which features or components you should be prioritizing in your search. Although different MSP antivirus solutions are all theoretically designed to serve the same purpose, they will likely have extremely varied approaches. This guide will aim to give you an understanding of what you should be looking for in a centrally managed antivirus solution when making your decision.
There are a few key features MSPs likely require from their antivirus software to be able to effectively protect themselves and their customers from malware. First, MSPs need antivirus software that can reliably catch and block known threats. Antivirus solutions often use traditional signature-based threat detection and scanning to do this—researching detection rates as well as false positives can be beneficial in helping you understand how effective and accurate various solutions are.
Beyond just capturing known threats, the right antivirus solution for your MSP should also be able to detect new, unrecognized viruses with real-time monitoring that keeps an eye out for suspicious behavior. Antivirus solutions that offer heuristic checks and behavioral scanning can best detect actions that are commonly associated with malware exploits, helping protect your customers from unknown threats. Finally, look out for additional features like scheduling, customizable and default policies, and proactive notifications, which can help you minimize resource drains, meet specific customer needs, and gain control.
When selecting a centrally managed antivirus solution, consider how quickly the program scans your devices. If you need to run a scan at a moment’s notice, you’ll need an antivirus program capable of running rapid checks. To confirm a program’s scan speed, check independent review sites to see what other users say. Ideally, the provider’s website will offer an average for their scan speed, but you should corroborate their claim and compare it to other options before making a purchase.
3. Value for money
The first and perhaps most obvious consideration should be finding a tool that offers good value for money. There are a few factors that are likely to contribute to value for money, which includes the actual price, the billing model, and whether a free trial is offered.
Centrally managed antivirus solutions come in a range of shapes and sizes. While some software is free, others will cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars. Then there are also the ongoing costs to consider. Does the vendor provide free ongoing support? If not, how much is support or technical assistance going to cost you when issues occur? Before making a purchase, it’s crucial that you ask these questions and ensure the solution you choose is affordable in a long-term capacity.
You should also keep in mind that the cheapest solution doesn’t necessarily offer good value for money, and neither does the most expensive solution. If you’re not sure what constitutes a reasonable price, compare the solution you have in mind to competing tools to gain a more informed understanding of current market prices.
A free trial offers added value because it gives you the chance to experience a tool before committing to it. This can potentially save you a significant amount of money in the long run, particularly if you have quite niche or specific requirements. It is worth noting, however, that some free trials may not give you access to the solution’s full range of features.
Finally, the billing model is perhaps one of the most important considerations when assessing value for money. While a one-off fee will inevitably require a higher upfront investment, it may end up being cheaper than opting for a monthly billing cycle. Your choice of billing model will come down to personal preference and your company’s individual circumstances.
4. Added value
If you’re looking to maximize value, then choosing an all-in-one IT security and monitoring solution that includes antivirus software is a smart choice. All-in-one solutions provide the greatest value for money and increase technician efficiency by allowing your team to access all of their needs from one consolidated tool. For example, an all-in-one remote monitoring and management tool might include centrally managed antivirus software, web filtering software, email scanning, remote access, and much more. With features extending across your full IT stack and accessible via a single dashboard, an all-in-one program can be both cost-effective and easy to use.
The right antivirus solution for your MSP
For MSPs looking for a comprehensive and cost-effective all-in-one solution, SolarWinds® RMM is a great option. This suite of tools was designed specifically for MSPs and includes advanced managed antivirus features, including:
- Extensive signature-based scanning
- Heuristic checks
- Active protection and behavioral scanning
- Default policies
- Powerful customization
- Endpoint branding
- Disk Encryption Manager available as an add-on
SolarWinds RMM has antivirus features that can protect your company and customers against known viruses as well as unknown viruses, detecting and averting them on a proactive basis. RMM also offers endpoint detection and response, password management, IT documentation management, remote monitoring, network device monitoring, remote access, network discovery, automation and scripting, patch management, and much more.
As an all-in-one solution, RMM also simplifies billing and the process of accessing support. From one powerful dashboard, RMM streamlines your MSP’s workload while delivering robust virus protection. To explore its capabilities at no cost, a 30-day free trial is available.