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Cisco Adds Security Enhancements to DNA

Security

Lynn HaberCISCO LIVE — Channel partners who attended Cisco’s Partner Summit 2016 in March heard about the transformational launch of Cisco DNA – Digital Ready Network – and how the vendor is changing the fundamentals of its networking strategy from hardware-centric to software-centric, manual to automated, closed to programmable, and reactive to proactive.

Monday, at Cisco Live, the vendor also announced new network-based security updates for DNA and an expanded partner opportunity to lead with security.

Cisco's Prashanth ShenoyWorking with its core security portfolio, Cisco has integrated enhancements at the network edge, embedding security into the branch-office infrastructure; see our deep dive on these announcements here. Some high points are that StealthWatch Learning Network licenses are sold through the Cisco ONE software model, and new functionality comes with the Meraki MX license, so for partners and their customers this again means a software upgrade.

“The concept of the network as a security center and policy enforcer is a core part of the DNA principles,” said Prashanth Shenoy, senior director, product and solution marketing, Enterprise Networking and Mobility at Cisco.

Cisco also on Monday unveiled a network-readiness model to help partners and customers move towards a digital-ready network — no small feat for a company with millions of customers. According to Shenoy, Cisco worked with IDC to create the model that identifies key elements of network readiness, such as automation, analytics, assurance, security, cloud, and IoT — and highlights a five-step model to help customers on their digital-ready network journey.{ad}

To help create the readiness model, IDC surveyed 3,300 IT professionals from around the world (800 U.S.-based). Twenty percent reported having aligned their network strategy with their business strategy. Additionally, these professionals said their companies have realized twice the revenue growth compared to companies that haven’t aligned their network and business strategies.

While Shenoy said that he was surprised at this finding, there were more insightful ones; for example, in the next two years, one-half of the respondents said they will have an automated, software-centric and programmable way of managing and building their network infrastructure.

However, they noted that they were unsure about how to get from today’s traditional network infrastructure to tomorrow’s software-centric digital network architecture.

“That’s why we’re offering a prescriptive, five-phase, standard approach to help them get there,” said Shenoy.

In August, Cisco will make available self-service tools and comprehensive online workshops that partners can use to create network-readiness assessment services for their customers.


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