Big buzz around the RSA show in San Francisco was about the changing nature of the role of IT in protecting the enterprise. Indeed, an emerging and important part of that changing role revolves around how cloud-based security as a service (a new variation on SaaS)for a host (pardon the pun) of sound technology and business reasons can, probably should and likely will be an important part of the mix going forward. This despite the early skepticism by large enterprises of the security of cloud services themselves.
In this regard, the announcement of the Verizon global managed services was joining forces with Qualys, Inc. , a recognized provider of cloud security and compliance management solutions, to expand their relationship to deliver new advanced cloud-based IT security and compliance management services certainly got the attention of those at the show.
A growing portfolio
The objective of the partnership expansion is to enable Verizon enterprise clients to benefit from the performance, security and scalability of the QualysGuard Cloud Platform as a means to enhance the protection of this IT assets and Web applications from cyber-attacks and to automate compliance.
For those not familiar with the QaulsysGaurd Cloud Platform it is quite comprehensive. It is an integrated suite of security and compliance solutions designed to give organizations of any size a global view of their security and compliance posture in a cost effective manner. The QualysGuard Cloud Suite, includes:
It also includes Qualys SECURE Seal. This enables customers to identify their IT assets, collect and analyze large amounts of IT security data, discover and prioritize vulnerabilities and malware, recommend remediation actions and verify the implementation of such actions.
As various recent studies have validated, the protection of apps along with the automation of compliance, particularly in the U.S., are very high on the priority lists of most CSOs and IT shops as they struggle to keep up with the explosion of apps running on their networks because of BYOD and access to the cloud, and at the same time must worry about various strict mandates regarding data retention, security and the ability for comprehensive auditing.
In fact, the need for powerful analytics across a broad swath of security issues was another major theme of the shows, and as part of the partnership Verizon will be layering additional analytics with the managed security services by leveraging its proprietary risk models to provide clients with “actionable information about their security risk posture.”
“Qualys’ cloud platform, commitment to innovation and global reach have made them a leader in the security services space,” said Cindy Bellefeuille Stanton, director of security product management for Verizon Enterprise Solutions. “By incorporating these solutions into our managed services and consulting offerings, our clients now have more choice and flexibility in meeting their compliance and security requirements -- a growing area of focus for our clients.”
“Verizon has built an impressive global managed security and consulting practice and together we will deliver leading edge IT security and compliance solutions to organizations around the world,” said Philippe Courtot, Chairman and CEO, Qualys. “Our expanded relationship will pay big dividends for enterprises looking to strengthen their security defense.”
As noted at the top the emergence and of security as a service is actually a recognition that we have reached a turning point in the way organizations look at and will deal with security issues going forward. No longer something that was part of the consideration of the purchase of various products and services, the need for broader reach in a world that is becoming more complex to manage and more risky. Security is now much more than assuring a strong perimeter, especially since the whole notion of what is the perimeter is now in question as boundaries are obliterating by technology trends and business imperatives. It includes having a view of what is going on with people, their devices, their apps and the networks they connect with for data interchange.
This complexity and the fact organizations need a lot more information along with a lot more protection is why the cloud makes sense and why the combination of companies with the capabilities of Qualys and service providers like Verizon with not just their network reach but their professional and consultative services capabilities are a natural.
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