Security Sales Skyrocketing Over 200 Percent For Solution Provider Superstar Sentinel Technologies: Here’s Why

One of Cisco’s top cybersecurity channel partners, Sentinel Technologies is taking security-as-a-service to the next level through its SecuritySelect platform that’s driving more than 200 percent year-over-year growth in security sales.

"We’ve really taken a holistic and advanced approach to how we sell security," said Robert Keblusek, CTO of the Downers Grove, Ill.-based solution provider, ranked No. 117 on CRN’s 2017 Solution Provider 500 list. "Security isn’t a one-time purchase anymore. It’s an ongoing effort regardless of whether the customer is doing it themselves, or we’re doing it in conjunction with them, or if they want to fully hand everything to us. We’ve wrapped all of our offerings and programs around those different options for our customers and prospects, and they’re welcoming it with open arms."

Sentinel’s SecuritySelect architecture brings together hundreds of different products from vendors like Cisco, Attivo Networks, Carbon Black and Palo Alto Networks into a single management dashboard, with à la carte licensing agreements.

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"If a customer has Palo Alto Networks, Check Point, Sophos, Cisco – there’s hundreds of products we can integrate so we can start to get the visibility across everything they already own," said Keblusek. "We then increase visibility with our own sensors."

The platform is enabling Sentinel, who expects to reach $225 million in sales this year, to grow security-as-a-service revenues by upwards of 250 percent in 2017, while its overall security business is over 200 percent.

Using the cybersecurity framework suggested by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), SecuritySelect provides solutions around identifying, protecting, detecting, responding and remediation. Offerings include asset management, risk assessment, data security, continuous monitoring, mitigation and recovery planning, to name just a few.

Sentinel’s Security Operations Center (SOC) option inside SecuritySelect closely monitors the network and related infrastructure 24 hours a day, all year, to detect and eliminate both exterior and interior threats as they emerge. Methodologies include behavioral monitoring and digital forensics to identify and isolate potential issues for further analysis and investigation to quickly find and stop the source of an attack.

"SOC gets you executive level consulting on an on-demand basis," said Keblusek, adding that Sentinel’s SOC business is up 300 percent this year.

"We’re very focused on reducing the bad-guy time to operate and reducing the customers time to detect. Right now, the industry average is about 146 days – we’re taking that down to only a few days," said Keblusek. "Our sensors and our SIEM (security information and event management) detect things relatively immediately."

National electrical construction company MYR Group is one of Sentinel’s customers who is leveraging these services. "Sentinel [is] knowledgeable, responsive and extremely helpful with analyzing our threat detection landscape," said Jean Luber, vice president of Information Technology at MYR Group Inc., in an email to CRN.

SecuritySelect also contains Sentinel’s proprietary CloudSelect Threat Exchange which provides development integration with third parties as well as automation services within the SIEM and sensors.

’Think of it as middleware and automation,’ said Keblusek. ’We have a centralized interface that we can actually push out threat information for that day-zero detection.’

Attivo Networks CEO Tushar Kothari touted Sentinel’s SecuritySelect as innovating and ’industry leading.’

’We have been working together with Sentinel to provide their customers with advance in-network attack detection and response services wrapped in their world-class security service offerings,’ said Kothari, in an email to CRN. ’These span traditional resale and integration of Attivo solutions through integration with Sentinel’s security-as-a-service and SOC offerings.’

One of the hottest revenue generators for SecuritySelect is conducting security assessments where the solution provider deploys a security-as-a-service technology. Sentinel provides everything from vulnerability scans and breach assessments, to penetration testing and IT governance compliance.

’We give you tremendous support, useful visibility and extensive reporting, which is good for compliance whether you have HIPAA, PCI, federal contractor requirements – we can help you be ready to give reports to auditors and help you pass those types of audits and assessments you might need to go through,’ said Keblusek.

AlienVault said its a large supporter of Sentinel’s SecuritySelect and CloudSelect differentiative solutions.

’Sentinel’s security team offers outstanding pre-sales service, post-sales deployment and support engineers, as well as quality assurance to provide customers with a complete security solution,’ said Mike LaPeters, vice president of Global Channel Sales at AlienVault, in an email to CRN. ’[We’ve] worked closely for a number of years to make AlienVault’s USM platform and threat intelligence a critical part of Sentinel’s overall security portfolio.’

Sentinel's largest security business runs through Cisco.

The San Jose, Calif.-based networking giant’s security business has been booming over the past two years, blossoming into a $2.2 billion run rate. Cisco has acquired multiple security vendors in the past two year including OpenDNS, Portcullis, Lancope and CloudLock.

’We are well ahead of the trend with Cisco. Within Cisco security, we are [seeing] 300 percent growth in their advanced threat security -- that’s where we’re finding a lot of opportunity,’ said Keblusek. ’We think if you’re looking for a single vendor to cover most of what you have, or to have an ecosystem of partners to fill the gaps, we feel pretty strongly that Cisco is that partner.’

For channel partners, Sentinel aims to become a trusted advisor. ’We’re not just trying to go in and sell a customer a product that they’ll put in place that will probably improve their operation, but they’re never look at again,’ said Keblusek. ’[SecuritySelect] is a customizable program for customers of various sizes at different stage of maturity ... Everyone has gaps. We’re looking to help fill those gaps and give them a complete program that aligns with industry best practices with a very consultative approach.’