McAfee Targets SMBs With Progams Unveiled At FOCUS Conference

McAfee this week unveiled a slew of initiatives aimed at fortifying SMBs and connecting infrastructure. The initiatives address what McAfee says are growing security demands in the smaller markets and in the mobile and cloud security spaces.

The myriad of SMB and other programs were a part of the newly released McAfee Acceleration Strategy outlining key growth initiatives for the upcoming year, which executives discussed in detail to more than 700 of the company's channel partners at its FOCUS Conference and 2010 Global Partner Summit, held simultaneously in Las Vegas this week.

On the SMB front, McAfee's plans encompass a Small and Medium Business Partner Acceleration initiative, featuring the launch of the McAfee Partner Acceleration Center, which provides a portal for partners to access sales tools and marketing assets that cover the entirety of the SMB sales cycle.

The SMB push is accompanied by the release of a McAfee report, titled "The Security Paradox,' which found that more than half of midsize companies around the globe have seen a significant increase of security incidents in the past year.

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McAfee's effort around the SMB space also includes impending launches of two new partner programs, comprising strategies that delineate how to reduce onsite infrastructure costs and enable customers to access cloud, hosted or managed services to meet their objectives.

Next: McAfee Debuts New Services Partner Programs

One of the partner programs includes the SaaS Monthly Designation, a program available to all McAfee partners looking to jump on board a managed services recurring revenue model, and offers easy access to sales and marketing resources for related products.

The second program, McAfee's Services Provider program, has been running as a pilot in the EMEA, but will eventually serve as the model for the worldwide launch of the Managed Services Provider and Outsourced Services Provider partner programs.

In addition, McAfee unveiled a new Emerging Technology Program, designed to bring some of its technologies to market more rapidly, whether they're created in-house or through an acquisition. The invitation-only program will focus on what the company considers to be key partners in a particular region with demonstrated expertise in virtualization, mobility and cloud services. Altogether, the program will include training and enablement, as well as additional benefits, for the selected partners.

As part of its comprehensive launch, McAfee debuted its Security Connected initiative, which offers partners comprehensive approaches around a variety of platforms, such as mobile, tablets and PCs, for a more holistic approach to security.

The broad initiative aims to break down security silos with products, services and programs that unite a myriad of platforms, and hundreds of security technologies with networks, severs, hosted applications, cloud services, virtual machines and databases.

Next: McAfee Connects Mobile Devices With Security Releases

As part of the Security Connected launch, the company debuted a new technology partner program, dubbed McAfee Connected, aimed at helping partners ensure that McAfee products are compatible with their customers' IT environment.

Specifically, the program entails a testing process that helps ensure that customers' third-party hardware, software and services perform well and are compatible with McAfee technology. The customers then benefit from reduced testing costs, shorter sales cycles and boosted confidence in McAfee's products.

The Security Connected program also facilitated the release of two out of an anticipated four connected security platforms, McAfee Endpoint Security 9 and McAfee Security Management 5.

McAfee Endpoint Security 9, which integrates into a single management platform, offers broad endpoint protection for all devices, including desktops, laptops, tablets, servers, storage, virtual machines, mobile and embedded systems. McAfee Security Management 5 provides a comprehensive management platform for monitoring, management and reporting that scales to any sized organization and protects all endpoints, networks and content.

Further connecting the channel partners was the McAfee Channel Community, which went live this week, designed to provide a comprehensive forum for channel partners and distributors to access resources and connect with other partners and McAfee personnel.