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When it comes to developing a channel programme there is a natural rhythm to the process that should help a vendor establish when it is right to take certain steps.
The moment to roll out a partner programme can be triggered by hitting a certain amount of critical mass, looking for further growth or because a direct strategy is no longer reaching the mid and small sized customers.
There is of course another point at which it makes sense to reach out for more indirect support, when a specific channel friendly product comes to market.
For security player PhishMe it is a combination of factors but the decision to launch its Simulator Small Business Editon (SBE) is the key reason for its decision to formalise a UK partner programme.
The decision to cut the ribbon on the PhishMe Channel Alliance gives the vendor a chance to increase its share of the SME market.
Partners that sign up will be given access to a portal which will provide support and information about discounts as well as guidance around the vendor’s technology integrations that are tailored to specific customer environments.
Jim Hansen, COO of PhishMe, said that plenty of customers were being hit by phasing attacks and the market that resellers could go after was a large one.
"In 2015, eight out of 10 companies experienced a security breach and 90 percent of these are the result of a spear phishing attack,” he said.
“Organisations are always looking for the mythical silver bullet to solve all of their security woes, and security vendors are increasingly pointing to technology as the answer, ignoring the importance of the human element. Through the Channel Alliance and the SBE offering, we will be able to assist an even wider range of organisations around the world," he added.
The timing of the PhishMe partner programme comes against a background of continuing customer ignorance about security with human error continuing to be a major cause of problems for businesses.
A report from Axelos indicated that a lack of security training in the workplace was putting data at risk and half of the corporate breaches last year were as a result of human error.
Ross Brewer, vp and managing director of EMEA, LogRhythm, said that much more had to be done by firms to make sure that staff were aware of the risks and just how crucial a role they could play in keeping data protected.
“There is an incredibly high number of security incidents that are caused by, or involve, human error. No person or organisation is infallible and employees will always be a weak link in an organisation’s security chain. A common problem is that organisations can think it’s important to only educate those at the top of the management tree, but this is a dangerous approach," he said.
"Indeed, we are increasingly hearing stories of cybercriminals looking for a gateway to the network by targeting employees lower down the ladder, quite often via spear phishing. The fact is, every employee who has access to the corporate network is a target, and with hackers using increasingly devious techniques, it only takes one download or one click of the mouse for someone to put the entire company at risk," he added.