FireMon consistently has been improving its channel program. It has added technical capabilities to distinguish it from a field of about three or four other vendors, said Joe Luciano, CEO of Access It Group, Mountain Lakes, N.J. FireMon competes against Tufin Technologies and AlgoSec, which share similar capabilities. The company also has added a risk engine that pits it against some risk and compliance platforms. FireMon bolstered its brand awareness, increased advertising and made businesses aware of the complex problem of managing policies across multiple devices and brands. The company also has placed key executives to support its channel approach, Luciano said.
"In the past couple of years, we've seen a huge leap in terms of partnership support as well as technology direction," Luciano told CRN.
Access It Group was recently named Top Eastern Region Partner for Growth and Revenue by FireMon. Access It Group caters to Fortune 2000-level enterprises that have a decentralized infrastructure with multiple firewalls and other devices that stand to improve operational efficiency and security through centralized management. Some firms had thousands of rules in their firewalls and no way to account for whether they were ultimately applicable anymore. Environments were becoming too complex and needed some simplification to increase visibility, Luciano said.
"By having so many people create rules, move rules and change rules, these firms understand that it becomes unsafe and insecure over time," Luciano said.
FireMon has been aggressively recruiting partners over the past two years and has seen significant growth in attracting new partners that have network security expertise. Many of the firm's biggest partners have a Cisco install base, DeBell said, but newly recruited partners typically have a network firewall background and can work with a variety of network products, including Palo Alto, Check Point, Fortinet, Juniper Networks and McAfee appliances. The company also integrates with Rapid7, Qualys and Tenable for vulnerability management, DeBell said.
"We hit the traditional firewall ecosystem where partners know the security space, and has a strong relationship with one of the brands we support. The other side is the risk piece helping customers on the vulnerability side," DeBell said.
The company also is conducting outreach to attract managed service providers, DeBell said. The platform appeals to MSPs because, beyond migrating customers from legacy to next-generation firewalls where rules cleanup typically takes place, partners and MSPs see value-add consulting services due to the visibility the platform provides. The reporting capabilities are also an eye-opener for businesses that have compliance mandates to meet.
"We're in a spot where we can look at all those networking, routing and load-balancing devices," DeBell said." People get excited about [next-generation firewalls], but once they're deployed, they often find that they are not delivering what they expected, and it's not because of the technology -- it's how the appliance was configured, how the network was partitioned and designed."
PUBLISHED MARCH 6, 2014