SOC Vendor Integrates With ConnectWise
AWN CyberSOC is billed as a turnkey SOC service, with automated notification and assignment of security incidents through ConnectWise Manage.
The SOC as a Service offering is recognition that managed services providers (MSP) face rapidly intensifying demand for sophisticated security solutions.
“I think at some point, every MSP is going to have to get into security services in one way or another, or they’re going to lose their customers,” said Young-Sae Song, vice president of marketing at Arctic Wolf Networks. “We hear it constantly; customers are asking them for it.
“Big companies have had this. It’s coming to the point in our industry where every company needs a SOC.”
In November 2016, ConnectWise launched a network operations center (NOC) service in partnership with IT By Design.
The new SOC offering — which is not part of a formal partnership but rather an integration developed by Arctic Wolf — comes about a month after rival MSP toolset maker Continuum announced it was launching SOC service.
Arctic Wolf Networks opened for business in 2014, with a direct sales model targeting mid-size and small organizations for whom an in-house SOC wouldn’t be cost effective.
Enterprises of 10,000 employees or more typically maintain their own SOCs.
But hiring the necessary 5 to 8 skilled security experts, and shelling out $500,000 to $1 million in equipment is beyond the reach of most organizations.
“On the lower end, it’s an underserved market,” Song said. “Our service is actually designed around delivering a very comprehensive security turnkey SOC service to the small enterprise market.”
Many of the organizations that Arctic Wolf Networks was targeting under the direct model were already working with IT services providers or VARs.
“At lot of these smaller companies like to make their IT purchases through trusted resellers,” Song said. “They had a preference for buying from whomever they were buying their other (IT) services and products from.”
In response, the security vendor launched a channel program in early 2016 and began growing its customer base of MSPs.
“As we started working with more and more MSP partners, they started saying ‘we really run a lot of our business through ConnectWise and it would help us scale if you were integrated with them,’” Song said.
The decision was made at the start of this year, and the technical work happened quickly.
“We’re a fairly small company; very nimble,” Song said. “We just kind of banged it out.”
Headquartered in Sunnyvale, Calif., Arctic Wolf operates SOCs in Provo, Utah; and Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.
“Our service includes everything you need to get a SOC up and running,” Song said. “All the hardware and software, it’s everything you need.”
Installation takes about five minutes, once the customer receives a single, small piece of hardware.
“We call it a sensor,” Song said. “It looks like an 8-port hub that we basically mail to the end user.
“It’s the collection point for all the data from a user’s environment, and we shoot that up to our Arctic Wolf Cloud, and that’s where all the magic happens.”
“We’ve really focused on making our product easy to install and hassle-free,” Song explained. “Everything is preconfigured.”
And it usually doesn’t take long for the SOC technology to help customers learn new things about their environments.
Past examples include everything from technicians mining bitcoin, to users accessing porn.
“In more than half the cases, we will detect something funny in the first 10 minutes – something that the company didn’t know was happening,” Song said.
Each customer is assigned a human Concierge Security Engineer, who works with the artificial intelligence software to help enhance machine learning and verification functions.
When a problem is discovered, the CSE provides specific instructions to the staff at the MSP on how to remediate the threat.
“We notify the MSP and then the MSP works with the customer to remediate the actual threat,” Song said. “Depending on the threat, we will actually point them to the tools. Any IT guy can follow the instructions of our CSE to remediate a threat.”
Arctic Wolf Networks will be demonstrating its new SOC integration during IT Nation, which runs Wednesday through Friday in Orlando, Fla.
“From an economic standpoint, we think SOC as a service fundamentally redefines the economics of security,” Song said.
“We routinely hear that we cost one-tenth of what it would cost to do it themselves,” he added. “We’re basically making SOC service affordable to everyone.”
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