Channel Post speaks with Shahnawaz Sheikh, Sales and Channel Director – META at SonicWall on the growing cyber security market and how the company is equipping its partners to stay ahead of the market.
What is the state of cyber security market in MEA?
Security is an area of increasing concern for everyone as organizations in the region have aggressively adopted Digital Transformation and connectivity which have simply increased the number of vulnerable access points for attackers. Digital enablement has made everyone in the region (and beyond) susceptible to cyber-attacks and this is only expected to increase unless steps are taken to deploy best security practices.
What factors are driving the growth of cyber security market?
Increase in the number and dynamic nature of cyber threats clubbed with growing vulnerability of networks to hacking are driving the expansion of this market. Another factor would be increase in awareness among customers. Post Shamoon, Petya and WannaCry incidents, we saw that customers are now more alert and wary of the cyber threats. They now realize how vulnerable they are without the right security solutions, which has resulted in increased spending in cyber security solutions.
What are the main cyber security products is SonicWall offering in region?
We have a very comprehensive cybersecurity platform built on a long standing history of protecting network parameters and core networks with our next-generation firewalls. Our email security solution provides superior protection from zero-day email threats and prevents data loss while also providing email encryption and real-time protection from spam, phishing and viruses.
Today cyber criminals are using sophisticated encrypted software to infect devices and networks, and spread malware. For this very purpose we offer a cyber-security platform built on Capture Advanced Threat Protection which is a cloud-based offering that not only identifies but automatically blocks unknown zero-day attacks.
Connectivity has made it possible for an organization’s workforce to work from mobile devices while they are not on premise and such remote connections need to be secured. For such a scenario we have Secure Mobile Access (SMA) solution that not only identifies and authenticates the user but also checks if the device being used is secure and is accessing from a secure network. We also offer wireless security that safeguards the organization’s wireless traffic from threats and delivers advanced network security and performance. In addition to these products we also have a Global Management System that allows organizations with multi-location deployments to control multiple firewalls across their networks.
Our centralized management system combined with offerings like SMA solution, email security solutions and companion products for firewall, we believe that we are able to provide all-round security to our customers.
What training and certification programs does SonicWall offer to its partners in the region and what are the advantages of being trained and certified by you?
We have periodical certification trainings like Certified SonicWall Security Administrator (CSSA) and Certified SonicWall Security Professional (CSSP) for our partners and customers. All our Gold and Silver tier partners are required to be certified with these accreditations as mandatory part of the partnership. In addition to this we also have product specific certifications on email security, global management system, SMA, etc. Unlike CSSA and CSSP certifications, these are only conducted on demand. Lately, we also introduced SonicWall University as part of our SecureFirst partner program to educate and train our partners via online sales and technical modules.
With a very strong training curriculum and certification path, we provide our partners with the right tools to update them on the latest trends driving the market and also improve their knowledge about our products and technology as well as user case scenario that enables them to be more hands-on in their approach and further boost the end-users’ confidence in them. Another benefit is that our training and certification is provided through SonicWall Authorized Training Partner (ATP) network which ensures that partners are trained on international standards to maximise their investment in our security solutions.
Can channel partners be successful in cyber-security space without investing in skills, training, certification etc.?
Absolutely not. Every few years the threat landscape completely changes and the cyber-security space in particular is very dynamic and constantly evolves. So, regular enhancements are not only required in the product, services and technological advancements but also in the skill-sets of those taking these products and solutions to the market. To do this it is important to hire personnel with the right skill-sets and more importantly to educate them and keep their skills updated through regular training.
Even when a partner has been working with us for a long time, we see that with time there is always need for some professional training to prepare them to address the market needs.