Security surveys are a dime a dozen lately, and findings tend to reinforce a burning need for whatever the sponsor is selling. The 2017 Cyber Trends Report is different; it was produced by the 350,000-member Information Security Community on LinkedIn, in partnership with Crowd Research Partners and sponsored by international nonprofit (ISC)2, which issues the CISSP certification and other credentials. With 1,900 respondents, about half deploying a mix of in-house and outsourced IT security, it’s a realistic look at the landscape.
And it has some good news for partners with the right skills and portfolios.
The headline – albeit not all that surprising – finding is that just 38 percent of respondents are very or extremely confident in their overall security postures. The majority of organizations represented, 52 percent, are boosting their security budgets (already averaging 21 percent of the overall IT budget excluding headcount) by an average of 21 percent; top focus areas for that spend include cloud infrastructure (33 percent), cloud applications (28 percent), training/education (23 percent) and mobile devices (23 percent).
The big worry? Phishing combined with careless and malicious end users — a recipe for ransomware. To address concerns, a majority (54 percent) of respondents plan to train and certify existing IT staff to become security experts. That’s encouraging – we as an industry need to think differently about skills, and it will help with the huge shortfall – but it’s not a quick fix. Nearer term, 47 percent plan to procure and deploy additional security technology solutions, and 41 percent plan to initiate or expand partnerships with managed services providers. About a third predict a budget increase for managed security services over the next 12 months. The report has a section specifically discussing what customers look for in managed security services and is worth a read.
It’s been a while since I pulled together a security news roundup, so here are some interesting bits for partners.
Congratulations to my colleagues at Penton on announcing a new eBook, “The New Channel for the Digital Transformation Era;” a new video series; and 13 new members in our Technology Channel Think Tank. They include Dawn Lindsey, head of partner marketing and programs, BigCommerce; Sandra Glaser Cheek, vice president, global channel sales & marketing, Brocade; Jason Phipps, SVP global sales & marketing, Ciena; Bill Corbin, SVP alliances & strategic partnerships, CenturyLink; Craig Schlagbaum, VP, indirect channels, Comcast; Lief Koepsel, senior director, channel marketing, Fortinet; Jim Chow, head, global system integrator partnerships, Google Cloud; Andrew Pryfogle, SVP, cloud transformation, Intelisys, a ScanSource company; Sal Patalano, chief revenue officer, Lenovo Software; Christopher Rajiah, managing partner, Lanka Venture Partners; Karl Fahrbach, head of global channels general business & global channels, SAP; Greg Dixon, CTO & technology evangelist, ScanSource; and Shawn Toldo, VP WW solution partners, VMware.
The goal of the Think Tank is to enable businesses whose mission is to help end customers embrace digital innovations. The group’s 2017 agenda is devoted to helping the channel transition to new business models, embrace new partner types and attract a new generation of workers. This is especially critical when the channel is shifting from the sale of physical goods to the delivery of digital services.
Of course, that mission aligns with our Austin Channel Partners Evolution & SDxE combined event, and we’re pleased to welcome the Think Tank to Austin and a panel of members to the keynote stage. Stay tuned!
Follow editor in chief @LornaGarey on Twitter.
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