AI-led cybersecurity will see huge traction in 2019

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Vijay Mhaskar, Chief Operating Officer, Quick Heal Technologies

Vijay Mhaskar, Chief Operating Officer, Quick Heal Technologies, shares the company’s channel strategies for 2019

Key highlights 2018 and opportunities for partners
From large-scale data breaches to devastating cyber attacks, the previous year witnessed some of the most high-profile security incidents in recent years, both in India and globally. These incidents have led enterprises and individual users to realise how important it is to ensure the safety and security of their critical information in the digital sphere.

That being said, there is a critical need for more awareness-related initiatives targeted at the SME/MSME sector. The awareness about cyber threats and their business impact is really low in this market segment, exposing small businesses across India to a huge risk factor. The sector also don’t lacks resources – capital, technological, or talent-wise – to build robust in-house cybersecurity infrastructure. This leaves them extremely vulnerable to threats within the digital realm and makes them a lucrative target for threat actors. Generating greater awareness about the latest cyber threats and cutting-edge cybersecurity solutions that can combat them can help address this disparity.

Top tech trends for channel community

  • Data Protection: One of the biggest technology trends that the cybersecurity industry and the channel community should definitely bank on is that of data protection and encryption. Data and information have become the new gold in today’s digitally-driven, tech-led era. Protecting this data is therefore of the highest importance, particularly since the launch of historic data protection policies such as GDPR. With the Indian government also currently in the process of formulating a comprehensive data privacy policy, there will be an accelerated demand for data-oriented security solutions amongst enterprises. IT channel vendors which integrate solutions like Data Loss Prevention (DLP) and Data Encryption into their value offerings will definitely reap significant returns on their investments.
  • AI/ML-based multi-defence security: Another key area of focus will be AI-led security solutions, particularly from organisations working in sectors such as BFSI, government, IT/ITeS, manufacturing, healthcare and retail etc. Organisations operating in these industries are increasingly leveraging digital technologies and the connected infrastructure to power their operations. The sheer volume of data that these industries generate makes it near impossible for human-only teams to identify potential threats and attacks in real-time, and to mitigate them swiftly. Integrating AI-led cybersecurity can step into the picture here and help organisations bolster their security profiles through swifter and more effective threat detection, response, and mitigation enabled by solutions such as security automation and security analytics.
  • Securing BYOD and connected devices: There will also be a shift towards implementing better mobile device management within the enterprise ecosystem. Organisations of all sizes are already adopting BYOD as an integral part of their operations, but struggle with implementing device usage and access policies and authorisations. Most such devices also do not have adequate security installed on them. This will drive a definitive shift towards security offerings providing seamless and robust mobile device management solutions to enterprises.
  • Securing the home network and smart devices: Home network security is emerging as another important consideration for the cybersecurity industry, given the increasing use of devices like smart TVs, smart fridges, Wi-Fi connected ACs, CCTVs, and other such appliances in modern smart homes. Users need to protect these devices from threat actors who can breach home networks by exploiting the smallest vulnerabilities. Such threats need to be mitigated through robust solutions that protect home Wi-Fi network by adding an extra layer of security between smart devices and threats on the internet.

Channel directions for partners
Channel partners are the very foundation on which Quick Heal’s success has been built over the last 25 years. We have consistently invested in strengthening our channel ecosystem through targeted partner on-boarding, specialised training programmes, and engaging industry events.

We are looking to launch more such initiatives in 2019 in order to help our channel partners understand the market, its dynamics and challenges, and future growth opportunities. As one of India’s leading cybersecurity brands, we will also be focusing extensively on raising end-customer awareness in both retail and enterprise verticals about various security trends, emerging threats, and the need for effective cybersecurity.

In order to align themselves to this vision, channel partners will have to conduct regular training to educate their employees about cybersecurity, threats, and market challenges. Such in-depth domain knowledge can help them make a more convincing case to prospective customers, which will lead to improved conversion rate and sales numbers. This, in turn, will maximise their revenue generation and profitability, as well as expand the scale of their business.