The growing challenge of defending against cyberattacks demands strategic planning and investments from IT decision-makers.

CRN‘s latest research on this topic, conducted in partnership with Microsoft, reveals the positive impact that choosing authorised distributors for genuine software purchases, can have on security.

Around 70 per cent of survey respondents say they would only purchase software from an authorised distributor. Elaborating on their encounters, IT decision-makers trumpeted reassurance and reliability. Benefits highlighted included fixed pricing, swift support, straightforward and efficient interactions, and reliable, rapid advice.

Navigating today’s security landscape

Threats are common and sophisticated, meaning organisations must do all they can combat attacks and limit cyber risks. However, purchasing non-genuine software opens organisations up to insidious malware that comes packaged, evading detection, and spreading through networks from the point of installation. To cope with the torrent of cyberattacks today, organisations cannot afford to compromise on compromised software installations that may create vulnerabilities internally.

Trusted distributors are the best way to defend against malware or spyware infiltrating vital systems and services. Customers want reliable, genuine software and will look to those in the channel for guidance. Sixty per cent strongly agree that the use of non-genuine software is or would be a security risk for their organisation.

Authorised software contains regularly updated security capable of defending against viruses, spyware, malware, and more. It prevents untrusted apps from running on organisations’ devices and enables security patches and updates be carried out automatically when available.

Avoiding damaging disruptions

Considering attacks and security issues present the risk of system outages and downtime, robust security benefits from genuine software mean organisations can run without disruption. As voiced by respondents, quick advice and support from distributors is a crucial part of this.

The right channel partnership can be the difference between severe business disruptions that impede finances, reputation, and productivity, and disruption that goes unnoticed due to rapid fixes. Customers need support that enables issues to be resolved before they have an impact.

Keeping software up to date is critical. Devices, systems, services, and more that are running out of date software put data at risk. Small vulnerabilities have serious implications for entire networks, as out of date software offers an attack vector to cybercriminals. Missing out on performance improvements, new features, and bug fixes also means productivity and user experience will be hampered.

Against the background of an increasingly challenging security environment, customers want to have confidence in their services and partners. They need software they can depend on, reliable security defences, and trusted distributors that enable this.

Authorised distributors provide automatic upgrades, training, and resources – all of which a workforce heavily depends on. Purchasing and implementing software is not just about the one-off cost, and while non-genuine software prices can be enticing, modern technology strategies are ultimately about forming good direct partnerships that support organisations today and into the future.

To learn more about CRN’s research into the genuine benefits of genuine software, read the full report.

This post was funded by Microsoft