CrowdStrike sees supply chain attacks and cyber espionage as top trends

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Geoff Swaine, Director, Channel & Alliances Asia Pacific & Japan, CrowdStrike

Geoff Swaine, Director, Channel & Alliances Asia Pacific & Japan, CrowdStrike, shares the company’s channel strategies for 2019

Key highlights 2018 and opportunities for 2019
In 2018, CrowdStrike was focused on growing its global partner footprint with new channel resellers, major system integrators (SIs), and technology alliances. The company launched a new partner portal, and expanded enablement options to help partners develop their CrowdStrike practices and ensure world-class customer support.

CrowdStrike has expanded rapidly into the EMEA and APAC regions, heavily investing in its channel and partner ecosystem with key wins in the United Kingdom, Italy, Japan, Australia, India, and Singapore. Additionally, the company has forged critical alliances with the world’s leading technology leaders, including Google, VMWare, Splunk, and others. I’m tasked to lead the APJ channel strategy and its rapidly growing partner program and drive joint go-to-market capabilities for CrowdStrike’s robust partner ecosystem.

On January 28, 2019, CrowdStrike announced a new tiered program for reseller partners to further accelerate sales and offer partners additional revenue streams through partner-provided services, solutions, and other opportunities.

The Elevate Partner Program is a unified partner program that incorporates all security solutions, partners and their go-to-market models. It encompasses a “whole-ecosystem” approach based on six paths to partner engagement and profitability – channel, technology alliances, MSSPs, OEMs, CrowdStrike Platform, and cloud procurements.

The Elevate Program will now better enable new and existing partners to develop expertise around specific technology areas and industries, so they can expertly serve their customers and differentiate through their partnership with the industry leaders in endpoint protection.

Top tech trends for channel community
Supply chain attacks will continue to rise as attackers will leverage this route to carry out targeted intrusions. Over the last 18 months, supply chain attacks have become one of the biggest threat vectors as organisations struggled with vulnerabilities. Software supply chain attacks have grown in frequency because of the high number of organisations that depend on third-party software for business operations and this shows no sign of slowing down.

Channel organisations will need to maintain vigilance to ensure they are not adding risk to the supply chain, and those who are equipped to protect it can bring their customers and partners real value. Additionally, we expect to see organisations perform a new level of due diligence to vet partners and their security practices in order to avoid unwarranted risks. Supply chain risks require a new security lens to move away from focusing on the perimeter to having the capabilities to behaviourally detect abnormalities in the system that traditional solutions may miss.

China will continue to ramp up commercial cyber espionage efforts. We saw an increase in espionage activity last year that will continue into 2019. China will ramp up efforts to steal intellectual property and trade secrets as geopolitical developments continue to jeopardise their economic objectives. Indian organisations, especially those engaged in trade with western nations, will need to ensure they are not vulnerable and be able to harden their security posture against sophisticated intrusion attempts. We will see greater compliance and risk requirements so that organisations investing in building security capabilities will have a competitive advantage.

Cyber insurance rates will go up because of the increased payouts and risk. This is the golden age of cyber insurance, and the market will continue to evolve. We have already seen insurance companies offering their customers discounts for having a proven security platform such as CrowdStrike Falcon in place. Channel partners who can prove their defensive capability to their cyber insurer will likely experience discounts. At the same time, as the threat landscape becomes more and more challenging to navigate, many insurance providers are likely to raise their rates to prepare for the new risk environment.

Channel directions for partners
At CrowdStrike, partners are a core part of our business, allowing us to reach more customers and meet the global demand for our technology. With today’s announcement, we actively expand on opportunities and build on mutual successes, while delivering more benefits, enablement, and rewards for our ecosystem of partners. Through CrowdStrike’s platform-first approach, partners receive an open framework for the development and deployment of next-generation antivirus (AV), endpoint detection and response (EDR), security hygiene, vulnerability management, managed hunting, all delivered from a native cloud architecture. CrowdStrike continues to expand its Elevate Partner Program to enable partners who are aligned with the CrowdStrike technology model and functional areas that meet customer needs.