We've just come out of a tumultuous year, but what does 2017 have in store? Brigantia commercial director Iain Shaw looks ahead in this opinion piece…
2016 will be remembered for being the year of the Brexit referendum. From a business perspective we must get on and deal with the challenges that present themselves, as we always do. So, to this end I present some of the opportunities that I think 2017 will bring.
At a high level, we have seen much in the news in 2016 about cybersecurity. Cyberthreats are real and are hitting your end user business customers daily. We know this is terrible as we hear about the consequences of Cryptolocker, Locky and all manner of ransomware or malware. The awful thing about this is, that this is very much an opportunity for our channel in 2017.
Let’s start by looking at education. There is a huge nationwide opportunity to provide basic employee cybersecurity awareness training for your customers on a fee-paying basis. Start by telling all your business customers that cybersecurity breaches are on the rise. Many will have seen this in the news but are likely to be in denial based on the ‘it couldn’t happen to us’ mentality. Tell them forcibly that it can. The IT Governance website states that in 2015, 90 per cent of large organisations and 74 per cent of small businesses had at least one security breach. Employee related cybersecurity incidents were especially common – 75 per cent for large organisations and 31 per cent for SMBs. The BIS/PwC Information Security Breaches Survey 2015 pointed to half of the worst security breaches being caused by inadvertent human error.
The human factor is the weakest link in any businesses cybersecurity strategy. Businesses can have the best technology and processes in the world but if employees are not alert and vigilant, the door can be open wide to cybercriminals.
When carried out effectively, an employee cyberthreat awareness programme:
- helps businesses to identify potential cybersecurity problems;
- helps employees understand the consequences of poor cybersecurity;
- ensures procedures are followed.
In addition, an increasing number of information security regulations worldwide – including the Data Protection Act in the UK, Public Services Network (PSN) and the EU’s General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) – specifically require that employees are fully aware of their role in data security.
For further reading, I would recommend the website of IT Governance Limited at www.itgovernance.co.uk. I would also suggest attending a Brigantia Webinar or local breakfast Seminar and listening to the overview on the cyberthreat landscape given by Jack Case, the Channel Manager UK and Ireland, at Heimdal Security. He will make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up in fear with his live update.
"In 2015, 90 per cent of large organisations and 74 per cent of small businesses had at least one security breach."
Iain Shaw, Brigantia
The products and services you previously recommended and sold to your business customers are all likely to still be valid. What has changed is the cybersecurity landscape? Your opportunity is to upsell your clients with the necessary extra layers of cyber protection whether this be additional endpoint services, enhanced backup services or new secure communications and collaboration platforms.
At Brigantia, we have built a portfolio of products and services that we feel will give you the enhanced tools required to provide effective defences for your business customers, while at the same time providing you with strong recurring income streams. We call this portfolio, and the work we all are doing promoting it, the Brigantia Cybersecurity Taskforce. These products include Bitdefender GravityZone MSP (virus scanning and removal), Heimdal Security Corporate MSP (extra layer protection), Data Deposit Box (Local and cloud storage and recovery solution) and Nuro (Secure Messaging).
2017 represents a year of great opportunity for growing your recurring income streams. This means that value will be added to your businesses based on the multiple of the recurring annual margin. Brigantia will be supporting all partners with weekly webinars introducing products and services and demonstrating how to sell them. Local breakfast seminars will also be held monthly around the UK and Ireland both solely for partners and in conjunction with participating partners for their business customers and prospective business customers. January sees two partner events being held in Bristol and Birmingham.
Anyone wanting further details should call Brigantia on 020 3368 0090 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Let’s make 2017 a year to remember for protecting as many business customers as we can against the growing array of cyberthreats while at the same time building real added value in all participating partner businesses.