Charles Leaver – The Security Industry Needs To Team Up To Win

Written By Charles Leaver


No one can fix cybersecurity alone. No single solution business, no one provider, nobody can take on the entire thing. To take on security needs cooperation between various players.

Sometimes, those players are at different levels of the option stack – some install on endpoints, some within applications, others within network routers, others at the telco or the cloud.

Sometimes, those players each have a specific best of breed component: one player specializes in e-mail, others in crypto, others in interfering with the kill chain.

From the business customer’s point of view, efficient security requires assembling a set of services and tools into a working whole. Speaking from the vendors’ viewpoint, reliable security needs tactical alliances. Sure, each vendor, whether making hardware, composing software, or using services, has its own products and copyright. However, all of us work much better when we collaborate, to allow integrations and make life easy for our resellers, our integrators- and the end customer.

Paradoxically, not just can vendors make more cash through tactical alliances, however end customers will conserve cash at the same time. Why? A number of factors.

Consumers don’t lose their cash (and time) with solutions which have overlapping abilities. Customers don’t need to squander profits (and time) creating custom integrations. And customers will not lose cash (and time) trying to debug systems that battle each other, such as by causing extra notifications or hard-to-find incompatibilities.

The Ultimate Trifecta – Products, Services, and Channels

All three interact to satisfy the requirements of the enterprise customer, and also benefit the vendors, who can focus on doing exactly what they do best, trusting strategic alliances to develop complete services out of jigsaw puzzle pieces.

Typically speaking, those services require more than easy APIs – which is where strategic alliances come in.

Think about the integration between products (like a network risk scanner or Ziften’s endpoint visibility options) and analytics options. End clients do not want to run a dozen various control panels, and they do not wish to manually associate anomaly findings from a lot of various security tools. Strategic alliances between solution suppliers and analytics options – whether on-site or in the cloud – make good sense for everyone. That includes for the channel, who can provide and support total services that are currently dialed in, already debugged, currently documented, and will work with the least difficulty possible.

Or consider the integration of products and managed security services providers (MSSPs). They want to provide potential clients pre-packaged options, preferably which can operate in their multi-tenant clouds. That indicates that the items need to be scalable, with synergistic license terms. They should be well-integrated with the MSSP’s existing control panels and administrative control systems. And naturally, they have to feed into predictive analytics and event response programs. The best method to do that? Through strategic alliances, both horizontally with other solution suppliers, and with significant MSSPs also.

What about major value add resellers (VAR)? VARs require solutions that are simple to understand, simple to support, and simple to add into existing security deployments. This makes new solutions more appealing, more economical, much easier to install, much easier to support – and enhance the VAR’s consumer relationships.

What do they look for when contributing to their product portfolio? Brand-new products that have tactical alliances with their existing solution offerings. If you do not dovetail in to the VAR’s portfolio partners, well, you probably don’t dovetail.

Two Examples: Fortinet and Microsoft

No one can fix cybersecurity alone, and that consists of giants like Fortinet and Microsoft.

Consider the Fortinet Fabric-Ready Partner Program, where innovation alliance partners integrate with the Fortinet Security Fabric by means of Fabric APIs and are able to actively collect and share info to enhance risk intelligence, enhance total threat awareness, and widen danger response from end to end. As Fortinet discusses in their Fortinet Fabric-Ready Partner Program Overview, “partner inclusion in the program signals to clients and the market as a whole that the partner has worked together with Fortinet and leveraged the Fortinet Fabric APIs to develop confirmed, end-to-end security services.”

Likewise, Microsoft is pursuing a comparable strategy with the Windows Defender Advanced Threat Protection program. Microsoft just recently chose only a few essential partners into this security program, stating, “We have actually spoken with our clients that they want protection and visibility into possible risks on all of their device platforms and we have actually turned to partners to help address this requirement. Windows Defender ATP provides security teams a single pane of glass for their endpoint security and now by teaming up with these partners, our customers can extend their ATP service to their entire install base.”

We’re the very first to confess: Ziften cannot resolve security alone. Nobody can. The very best way forward for the security industry is to move forward together, through strategic alliances bringing together product suppliers, service companies, and the channel. That way, we all win, vendors, service providers, channel partners, and enterprise clients alike.