Financial-industry managed services provider TAS Managed Services (TAS) is targeting full PCI compliance by 2013 and will offer its own clients a broader portfolio of security-auditing services after stitching up a long-term relationship with security consultancy Pure Hacking.
The companies have signed up for a three-year partnership in which Pure Hacking will undertake monthly penetration testing of TAS data centres hosting a range of financial and payment applications for the firm’s nearly 60 financial-services industry clients.
Compliance with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS) will boost TAS credentials around the handling of sensitive credit card information, with Pure Hacking’s Security Incident and Event Management Prediction tools to be implemented as a virtual appliance on TAS virtual infrastructure.
The partnership marks an explicit recognition of the importance of ongoing security testing when providing outsourced services to security-sensitive verticals like financial services, new TAS Managed Services CEO Shane Baker told CSO Australia, presaging a move into servicing new parts of the industry such as insurance and brokerage.
“We’ve engaged with Pure Hacking on behalf of our customers months ago to undertake an application penetration test, but as an organisation we’ve since taken it a couple of stages beyond that,” Baker said.
Noting that many customers assume that outsourced services provide “complete security”, Baker said the deal will allow TAS to work with customers to take a much more “proactive and consultative approach” to securing its customers’ environments.
This sort of value-add had become particularly important for security-conscious customers who feel an imperative to embrace cloud computing and other hosted applications, but aren’t always well-versed in the security issues of the third-party infrastructure delivering those capabilities.
Service providers, Baker argued, will need to expand their security capabilities to ensure customers are both protected and educated about the risks of the new online world.
The deal with Pure Hacking is “a long-term relationship and a number of things are locked into it”, he added, noting that the rise of cloud services had exacerbated customers’ requirements for security. “I want to provide security services that go beyond just our core, and extend into our customers’ environments.”
“BYOD, Internet banking and these other trends are becoming more and more a challenge – not just for technology, but for security itself," he continued. "Our customers are looking to work in those worlds, so I’m looking to extend that to the services we offer. I absolutely believe that, if we’re going to provide value to our customers, we will need to be able to support them in their environments.”