EarthLink Debuts Managed Security Service

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By Perry Vandell

As part of its continuing shift to managed services, EarthLink is introducing a new managed security monitoring service that the company says will detect potential security threats before they become full-on data breaches.

EarthLink Chief Security Officer Pete Chronis noted to Channel Partners that system security is often too large of a challenge for companies to take on themselves. They don’t have the infrastructure to monitor all the activity happening on their network, and EarthLink’s security monitoring service allows those companies to focus their efforts elsewhere.

“A lot of [other companies] are just focusing on network security and we know from these breaches that have hit the paper, whether it’s Samsung or Google or Target, that you have to have comprehensive security monitoring that encrusts the entire IT ecosystem in order to be effective,” Chronis said.EarthLink Business' Sherri Turpin

The service monitors the logs of systems, routers, firewalls and servers for suspicious and potentially malicious activity on a variety of devices that produce data, including tablets and smartphones. Chronis said this service is different because it encompasses the entire IT ecosystem as opposed to only network security.

To capture the attention of channel partners, Channel Chief Sherri Turpin said EarthLink is flying potential resellers to its corporate office for training.

“We’re paying all expenses; we’re sitting with them and doing whitepapers and collaborative study sessions so when they go back into the market, they’re extremely grounded and know how to leverage us,” Turpin said. “Our network is very relevant, but it is our applications and our security and our brand protection that is really changing EarthLink because we’re not just a network provider anymore — we’re a managed security provider.”

While EarthLink is focusing its efforts on security, Avaya has turned its gaze toward …

… improving software-defined networking (SDN). The company recently announced a new SDN architecture dubbed Avaya SDN Fx, which aims to make devices connect and communicate with networks – both secure and unsecure – more seamlessly.

James Weaver, global product marketing and branding manager at Avaya, told Channel Partners that the new architecture will reduce partners’ headaches.

“Like simplicity in your home grid that lets you move a home appliance from one power outlet to another, SDN Fx in your network means that applications, devices, and even users, see the network as one big connection point capable of reconfiguring itself when changes are detected,” Weaver told us in an email. “For a channel partner, this means less worry about connections and configurations and more attention on strategic applications for the customer, since the network handles these once-manual functions automatically.”

Weaver also noted that SDN Fx eliminates multiple protocols and overlays while reducing the number of outages, allowing the company’s partners to focus on increasing their customer base rather than attend to numerous service calls.

In other words, less work for the customer means more customers for the partner.

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