Who are the top managed security services providers (MSSPs) around today? Well according to a new report from Forrester Research a handful of big technology vendors and telecom carriers are leading the pack. Now keep in mind, Forrester divides the MSSP provider space into two segments, one that serves very large enterprises and the second that serves mid-sized companies. For this particular report, Forrester focused on the segment of MSSPs that serve the very large enterprises. Here's the update.

Forrester identified the following companies as “leaders” in MSSP: IBM, Dell SecureWorks, Symantec,  Verizon, Trustwave, CSC and AT&T.

Among the “strong performers” Forrester identified the following: Hewlett-Packard and WiPro.

What made up the difference between those leaders and strong performers? Forrester explained:
“All of the MSSPs reviewed for this research have the capabilities to become a strategic partner for their clients; however, some were quite simply better at execution. The Leaders were notably close in their scoring. We interpret this to mean that the Leaders understand equally what it means to be a successful MSSP and execute on that vision. The Strong Performers also had their list of strengths but did not rate as well in key areas such as client business alignment, advanced threat intelligence and execution on client SLAs.”
And while this report focuses on the big players out there, there’s certainly a lesson here for smaller MSSPs striving for excellence: Execution, client business alignment, advanced threat intelligence and execution on client SLAs can make the difference in helping you stand out from the crowd.

MSSPs who are pursuing the small businesses will find a market ripe with opportunity according to NetClarity's CTO who recently cited a growth in attacks against SMBs.