CRN Exclusive: BlackStratus Launches SIEM Solution For SMB Market

Enterprise SIEM vendor BlackStratus is diving into the SMB market, revealing Monday the launch of a SIEM-as-a-Service solution that brings enterprise-grade capabilities to partners serving small to medium-size business clients.

BlackStratus, formerly netForensics, is a long-standing security information and event management vendor based in Piscataway, N.J. Over the past 17 years, according to the vendor, it has built a "booming" business serving telecom and enterprise customers with a solution to help with compliance management, correlating security events, remediation strategies and stopping attacks in progress.

Now, the company is turning its sights to the SMB market with the launch of CyberShark. What makes this announcement so important, CEO Dale Cline said, is that the SMB market is "woefully unprepared for what's happening in the world around cybersecurity" compared to its enterprise counterparts.

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"The problems the SMB faces around security are as large as and more problematic than what the enterprise is facing," Cline said, adding that they are breached at rates equal to or higher than enterprises because of underfunded security practices, and often face more catastrophic implications of a breach.

CyberShark offers the exact same SIEM capabilities as its enterprise solution, leveraging the cloud and multitenancy to bring the ability to flag, analyze, provide intelligence and report billions of security events at a price point SMBs can afford, according to BlackStratus. The solution is available as a white-label managed service offering to partners, costing hundreds of dollars a month instead of tens of thousands, Cline said. Partners pay a monthly fee for the solution and can choose how to pass those costs along to customers through a customized partner portal, he said.

BlackStratus sells only through partners, a practice that will continue with the CyberShark offering, Cline said. He said the company will first be targeting Autotask users, a market of around 7,000 partners, as the company has built an integration into the Autotask ticketing platform. The company will later expand its offerings to other partners, he said.

Cline said the new CyberShark solution presents a big opportunity for partners, both by providing an additional revenue stream and increasing stickiness with their clients around crucial security solutions.

"This is a huge step up in the ability involved in these security services," Cline said. "Their [clients] require security. If their partner is not able to solve these problems for them, they're not going to be with them a long time. [Partners] need to be offering security services."

Eugene Tawiah, founder and chief security officer of Edison, N.J.-based Complex Technologies, said he started looking at BlackStratus about a year or two ago because of its white-label managed SIEM capabilities, but didn't feel the vendor was a good fit at the time for his SMB clients because of its enterprise pricing level.

But Complex Technologies is now taking a second look with the release of the company's CyberShark solution, Tawiah said. His clients are seeing a heightened awareness around investing in security solutions, particularly with recent stories about ransomware and breaches hitting midsize health-care businesses.

"We're happy to re-engage with BlackStratus because we want to re-engage and capitalize on this market. I'm sure it will happen in others as well," Tawiah said.

As Complex Technologies is a managed service provider, Tawiah said, it is critical to offer these types of security solutions to his clients. He said it is also important to communicate the value of investing strategically in enterprise-grade quality solutions, instead of choosing cheaper solutions that are less effective.

"If the MSP is not prepared, then [clients] will go elsewhere," Tawiah said. "It is important for MSPs to get that in their wheelhouse."

The solution has been in beta for the past few months and is available to partners as of April 11.