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The security channel has been moving more towards a managed service model over the past few years, encouraged by vendors, with that trend being accelerated by the coronavirus pandemic.
Vendors have launched certification programmes, dedicated partner programme tracks and increasingly specific technology that will support the MSSP model.
WatchGuard has added more capability to its cloud platform as a sign of its commitment to MSPs, with the firm able to offer partners a chance to deliver managing network security, advanced threat detection and multi-factor authentication through a single interface.
Jonathan Whitley, regional vice-president, northern Europe at WatchGuard Technologies, said the company was giving partners the chance to offer more of its portfolio via its cloud platform.
“Everything we do has always been really aimed at enabling the channel, and the managed service community has been one that we have put a huge amount of effort into lately,” he said. “What the WatchGuard Cloud really does is bring together that whole sort of management piece that we’ve been working on for some time into a single pane of glass.”
Whitley said the ability to offer multi-factor authentication from the cloud tapped into a market that had increased significantly during the pandemic with the growth in remote working.
WatchGuard has been building more functionality into its cloud platform thanks to recent acquisitions, with its most recent, Panda, giving the vendor the opportunity to bring more artificial intelligence into the way it hunts out viruses.
WatchGuard was in the vanguard of vendors that ramped up efforts to reach out to MSPs and Whitely revealed that 10% of the company’s revenue that comes from the UK is made up of MSSP points, and that had been growing quarter-on-quarter.
“We are picking up new partners who are moving towards the managed service model and then some are somewhat transitioning across,” he said. “It’s just a different way for our partners and our end-users to consume technology. We just want to be as flexible with that as possible. One of the things that the pay-as-you-go model does give is that it enables people to roll out things much more easily.”
Whitely added that customers and channel partners were also looking to consolidate the number of vendors they worked with, so it also made sense to add more depth to the cloud platform.
“From a managed service provider or reseller perspective, it’s nice as well because it allows you to have this sort of consistency in your policies and the consistency in your reporting and visibility of everything from one location,” he said. “Customers are spending an awful lot of money on security as well, and they need to know that they’re getting something for it.”