Growing Cannabis Industry Turns to MSPs to Handle IT and Security Needs


Growing Cannabis Industry Turns to MSPs to Handle IT and Security Needs

By Laura Stotler

Cannabis is big business these days, with New Jersey, New York, Virginia and New Mexico passing legislation to legalize recreational use of marijuana in 2021. Several additional states are debating legalization, while others have legalized cannabis for medical use. The market is expected to reach $66.3 billion by the end of 2025, making it one of the fastest growing industries in the U.S.

Legalized cannabis and technology go hand in hand, with new business owners embracing tech for their finances, sales, cybersecurity and even physical security. The trend has bumped up demand for managed service providers (MSPs) to manage and maintain IT infrastructure for this fast-growing niche of businesses.

Most new cannabis businesses do not have IT professionals on staff, making MSPs an attractive and affordable option. Digital solutions like cannabis CRMs and an increased reliance on IT and the cloud are driving demand for experienced technology professionals in the space.

Cannabis businesses are also grappling with issues like cybersecurity, regulatory compliance and physical surveillance needs. As dispensaries and growing locations multiply, they become increasingly vulnerable to burglary, robbery and cyber attacks.

MSPs offer a variety of services beneficial to this growing strain of businesses, including physical security measures like cameras, key cards and surveillance systems. They also focus on cybersecurity measures, including regular monitoring and maintenance of IT systems. Specific technology measures include security risk assessments, system hardening, data loss prevention, dark web monitoring and software and hardware updates.

MSPs can also offer valuable support in compliance with HIPAA and other regulatory mandates. Services may include advanced user authentication, encryption of data both at rest and in motion and intrusion detection and preventi

Edited by Luke Bellos

MSPToday Contributing Editor

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