Nclose: Successes of MSS and MDR
Growth of MSS and MDR to address the increase in cyber security threats.
Martin Potgieter and Stephen Osler are two names becoming very prominent in the cyber security space in southern Africa. As the founders of Nclose in 2006, they have taken the company from small humble beginnings and have turned it into something unique – which has been evident in their growth over the past couple of years. With MSS and MDR having seen a 65% growth in the last 10 months, “our team has more than doubled over the past 10 months and continues to grow, with members based all around South Africa and even in neighbouring countries,” says Potgieter, Nclose’s Technical Director.
Managed security services (MSS)
Nclose is unique in that they don’t take the typical traditional approach when it comes to providing managed security services, but rather cater to the specifics of their customers' needs, making sure every customer feels important and well taken care of. “We have seen some really great growth in customer uptake, and one of the reasons is finding people with the appropriate skills that match our company culture and dedication towards our clients. We are not simply a body shop – we have teams that are dedicated to different pillars within cyber security and those teams leverage a collaborative or collective IP approach to deliver to customers' unique needs,” says Osler, Nclose’s Business Development Director.
Osler and Potgieter believe their nontraditional approach to managed services is probably their biggest contributor to growth because there isn’t a singular entity dedicated to a customer, but rather a team of highly skilled security engineers and security analysts addressing their customers' requirements. Potgieter further adds: “In traditional MSS, a client may request a change on their service from the service provider – who in turn makes changes without questioning whether the client's request may introduce a security risk, making it a very operational relationship. We take it a step further by questioning whether these operational changes are safe for our clients, and advising our clients whether the change is necessary or needs to be reworked so that they are in a more secure state than they were before. We strongly believe in this collective knowledge approach that allows us to have strong transparent relationships with our clients, rather than simply following a yes/no decision-making model.”
Managed detection and response (MDR)
Nview – Nclose's managed detection and response service – is a large data collection engine that ingests telemetry from a variety of technologies. “We currently support over 90 different technologies across 52 vendors, which is a substantial achievement in terms of supported technologies,” says Potgieter.
A new addition to the Nview MDR roadmap – currently in beta – is NDR (network detection and response). “Adding network traffic to our detection stack contributes greatly to the entire MDR service. Apart from adding additional telemetry into our MDR platform, we will now also have on-premises detection capabilities with our NDRnode,” says Osler.
Company growth and culture
Even through the pandemic, the company’s growth has seen the formation of entirely new departments, including DevOps and recruitment – continuing to be an active employer in such uncertain times. “Portions of the work we did were outsourced, but we have dedicated resources to building teams internally and creating new features for our clients,” says Osler. With the company going through such a rapid expansion, of paramount importance for Nclose will always be to maintain their high client-centric standards, which is an established culture within the company. “Still, despite our company, team and client growth, we think that the most important element to retain is our customer-centric and delivery culture; service degradation is not an option,” says Osler.