How WatchGuard is targeting the opportunity in SMB security
With the sweeping changes to breach notification and the continually evolving cyber-threat landscape, it is increasingly important that organisations are protecting themselves.
SMBs have been identified as a major area of concern as security can end up taking a backbench to other priorities.
As a result, the security gap between enterprise and smaller businesses has grown.
This is an opportunity that vendors are now aiming to leverage through packaged offerings that partners, especially managed security service providers (MSSPs), can take to their SMB clients.
One such vendor is WatchGuard Technologies whose offerings look to take enterprise-grade security services and package them in a more accessible form.
WatchGuard A/NZ regional director Mark Sinclair has been paying close attention to the growing number of partners who are starting as, or moving to the managed services model and has identified some of the coming trends in that space.
“We are seeing partners invest in services such as security audits and security penetration testing as an entry point into the MSSP world,” he says.
“More progressive partners are looking at setting up 24/7 security operations centres so that they can monitor their customers real-time. Others are partnering with 24/7 organisations to be able to offer this service.
“The other change that we are seeing is how vendors are responding to the ‘as-a-service’ movement in general. WatchGuard has introduced the flexible points system to address this need. We are looking at other innovative pricing models and expect to have further offerings later this year.”
Sinclair also notes that the company is thinking about how they can reward those partners who make the choice to take the offerings to their clients.
He outlines its partner programme with discounts to partners that achieve Silver or Gold status, a partner dedicated 24/7 line to a support team in the US, and a flexible points system allowing partners to charge their users on a monthly basis for security subscription services.
He adds that they are also looking to ensure that their offering will keep SMB's on top of any legal issues they may face in the coming wave of data breach legislation.
“Our reporting system "Dimension" has many canned reports that provide partners and SMB's the insight as to what is happening to their network from a threat perspective. You can get early warning of any IT security breach using our reporting tools.”