Avnet debuts managed security offering

Alex Ryals, vice president of security and networking solutions at Avnet Technology Solutions for the Americas

, vice president of security and networking solutions at Technology Solutions for the Americas

has introduced Recon, a managed security it is offering through VARs and focusing on SMB and midsize business customers for whom on-staff or outsources security management may be out of reach.

With Recon, the company aims to allow its solution providers the opportunity to offer a suite of , either under the Recon brand name, or white labelled under the partner’s own brand. The distributor is looking to fill a gap for solution providers that are selling security offerings, but aren’t large enough — or far enough down their own security practice evolution — to warrant building out their own security operations centre (SOC) to offer a 24/7 managed security service themselves.

“A lot of channel partners tell me that when they sell security solutions, particularly appliances, the customer inevitably asks the partner about monitoring the security posture and security services they have,” said Alex Ryals, vice president of security and networking solutions at Avnet Technology Solutions for the Americas. “For many SMB-focused partners, they don’t have the capital to build that managed service or that SOC themselves, and they’re asking if Avnet would build it for them.”

The answer to that question is now “yes.” Recon is operated on a VM-based “virtual appliance” installed on the customer’s premise, which acts to monitor and maintain a variety of networking and security devices on the customer’s network. The company lists a variety of Avnet vendors, including Cisco, Checkpoint, and F5 as those that can be monitored and managed through Recon, though Ryals stressed the capabilities extend to a products from a variety of vendors — both those signed on with Avnet, and those unaffiliated with the distributor.

As well as monitoring and management, Recon will include options for , security , host IDS, and network scanning for security threats.

“It’s much more than a [security information and events management] solution. It’s a full-service security monitoring system,” Ryals said.

If threats are detected, they’re handled by Avnet people, who will respond to alerts with research, and then recommend remediation back tot he end customer, Ryals said.

For partners selling a mix of security products and services, Ryals said Recon will allow themt o expand both margins and reach on a deal, because of the better profitability profile of the managed service.

The distributor also sees benefit from the program — both on what it charges for solution providers to resell or white-label the service, and from an expanded security business overall.

“We’re looking to get our partners selling more of our security solutions from a variety of vendors because they can back it up with the managed service to increase their profitability,” Ryals said.

While both resale and white-label models will be available to solution providers, Ryals said he expects the latter model to be the more attractive one in an era when solution providers are clamoring for and recurring revenues.

“Any partner investing in security wants to build their own brand recognition. And that’s fine with me,” he said.

The service will be available at four tiered price points — with “Basic” service price points covering up to 1000 events per second and 2500 events, as well as an “Advanced” service covering 3500 and 5000 evens per second. The company will also offer an Enterprise service level for larger customers, but that will involve a great deal more customization and integration.

The program, which is available now to Avnet’s Canadian and U.S.-based solution providers, will be attractive especially to customers “who have been breached in the last 12 months, and are looking at how to prevent it from happening again,” Ryals said, as well as those looking to move more of their security spend from capital expenditure to operational expenditure.

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