The cyber security threats that have been facing enterprises across the Asia-Pacific region have been accelerating throughout 2021, and there is no indication that it will slow from here. Furthermore, the stresses around security that organisations are facing are difficult to solve within the business, leading to greater reliance on channel support than ever.
Data from EY shows that while 73 per cent of organisations across Asia-Pacific have seen an increase in disruptive attacks, over half (57 per cent) are unsure if their cybersecurity defences are strong enough to face the modern cybercrime environment. As the EY Asia-Pacific Cyber Leader, Richard Watson, said in a release: “Businesses are planning a new wave of technology investments to thrive in the post-COVID-19 era. If cybersecurity is left out of investment discussions, the threat will continue to grow in the years to come. They should consider sharing the cost of cybersecurity across the business to support transformation.”
For CISOs and other IT leaders, some of the key challenges that they are facing include:
- Sectors that weren’t previously a target for concentrated attack by cyber criminals are now firmly on the radar. Financial services has had decades to build robust security environments. Manufacturers, small businesses, arts and transport companies – to name just a few disparate examples – are grappling with much of this for the first time, and from a position of disadvantage.
- There is a proliferation of threats, underpinned by the ease of access to cybercrime packages on the dark web. There are even “cybercrime-as-a-service” solutions available, making it easier to be a cyber criminal than ever.
- SMEs are particularly vulnerable. Where cyber criminals would previously target the big pay-offs, now the low hanging fruit offers them easy revenue opportunities, and consequently, SMEs are facing increasing security risks, compounded by the need for many of them to shift to remote working for the first time.
- A lack of security resources is particularly problematic. The APAC region faces some of the most severe cybersecurity shortages of all in the coming years, and that means that security skills will be expensive to retain, and less “desirable” sectors will miss out entirely.
For businesses, the solution to these challenges cannot simply be “new technology.” Businesses need solutions that can address the security challenge from a holistic perspective, and that means bringing strategy together with robust technology. This, of course, is the traditional strength and value-add of the channel.
WatchGuard in action
As a channel-only organization, WatchGuard has committed to providing managed security providers (MSPs) with a best-in-class Unified Security Platform™ that allows them to easily and profitably deliver security solutions to their customers at scale.
Central to delivering this is WatchGuardONE®, the award-winning channel partner program that’s designed to enable MSPs to grow their businesses profitably. With three tiers – Silver, Gold, and Platinum – WatchGuardONE unlocks key features such as product discounts and rebates, deal registration, 24x7 technical support, flexible payment options, sales and marketing resources, renewals and leads management, syndicated content, as well as free or low-cost training classes and product discounts. WatchGuard claims that with these tools, personalised support, and its unique approach to engagement, partners will have everything they need to be the cybersecurity leader that their customers are looking for.
An example of WatchGuard’s success in the channel can be found with Sovannaphym Life Insurance company in Thailand. With 450 employees across two office locations, and a further 280 remote employees, Sovannaphym Life Insurance was facing a real challenge in its efforts to streamline security between its offices, while also providing remote access.
WatchGuard partnered with Positron to deliver a solution around the WatchGuard Firebox M200. Coupled with Basic Security Suite (which includes WebBlocker, Appliction Control, Gateway AntiVirus, Intrusion Prevention Service, and spamBlocker), the solution has given Sovannaphym Life Insurance the confidence that the organization is now protected while able to operate a modern and dynamic business. As Sovannaphym Life Insurance IT Manager, Senghak Veng, said “Our partner not only gave us the support we needed but made the deployment easy. They showed us how to manage our solution, which conveniently is centralized in one location. They have been very helpful every step of the way.”
The Sovannaphym Life Insurance story highlights the strengths of WatchGuard’s channel partner program, the company claims. Focused on enablement and giving partners straightforward and effective tools, WatchGuard assists partners in reaching customers of all sizes and scales with practical, plug-and-play equipment that doesn’t rely on the customer to build out an IT security team as part of the deployment. Furthermore, it empowers the partner to engage more deeply and on an ongoing basis with their customers.
Customers – especially in those that are grappling with the full extent of cybersecurity for the first time – are really looking for managed providers that can provide solutions that don’t require them to resource up new security teams. Whether the channel partner is an MSP, or looking for solutions that their customer’s existing IT teams can manage, the strength of WatchGuard as a vendor and partner is that the channel can cut through the noise while also providing effective, proven, and highly manageable technology solutions.