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Kaspersky North American Channel Chief: Security Offered By Native Cloud Providers Is Very Minimal

Michael Novinson
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Native cloud providers don't have anything in place from a security standpoint that matches the capabilities of what Kaspersky Lab can offer, according to the company's channel chief.

Many clients moving to the cloud mistakenly think that their Infrastructure as a Service, Desktop as a Service, or Disaster Recovery as a Service provider is inherently secure, according to Jason Stein, Kaspersky's vice president of channel for North America. But the cloud isn't secure in the way these customers think it is, Stein said.

"Native cloud security is weak," Stein said Friday during Kaspersky's Trusted Advisors Summit in Scottsdale, Ariz. "They're not as secure as what we bring to the table … The security that they provide is very, very, very minimal."

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Nonetheless, Stein said 38 percent of customers fully rely on cloud service providers when it comes providing complete security protection. This comes with inherent risks since much of the security offered by these cloud providers is left up to the customer, according to Stein.

Even though some 49 percent of clients are moving over to outsourced IT infrastructure providers, Stein said that they aren't nearly set up from a security standpoint.

"We're in discussions with some of them to see how we can help layer on top of their services to help protect them better," Stein said. "Because they realize that their clients are asking for more security."

Kaspersky offers a single integrated product from a single console using a single source code that can protect all cloud services and workloads, Stein said. From a reactive technology standpoint, Stein said Kaspersky's hybrid cloud offering provides firewalls and firewall management, URL filtering, file integrity monitoring, anti-phishing and log inspections.

Moving into proactive and advanced capabilities, Stein said Kaspersky's offering embraces heuristic technology to provide device control, application control, exploit blockers, and memory protection.

For enterprise customers – which many businesses with more than 300 employees consider themselves to be – Stein said Kaspersky delivers account management, cloud API integrations, and unified security orchestration, monitoring and reporting.

Kaspersky provides integrity, monitoring, and anti-malware protection for both Windows and Linux servers, Stein said. In the public cloud arena, Stein said Kaspersky supports Microsoft Azure and Amazon Web Services in both bring-your-own-license and pay-as-you-go models, ensuring that customers are protected regardless of how they come to Kaspersky or what types of cloud services they're looking for.

Cloud adoption in unstoppable, Stein said, with 23 percent of customers planning to increase their use of public cloud services over the next year, an additional 22 percent looking to grow their corporate private cloud during that timeframe either on-premise or in the data center, and another 21 percent moving to expand their hybrid cloud infrastructure, or doing a combination of public and private cloud.

Kaspersky can set up risk and threat modeling to help address the lack of visibility and security transparency that can be problematic in hybrid cloud, Stein said. The company's layered approach addresses DNS and DDoS attacks, Stein said, as well as spoofing attempts.

From a Software as a Service standpoint, Stein said Kaspersky is seeing lots of increased action around Office 365 in the form of spam, malware, phishing, or disappearing emails. Four-in-five data breaches happen via phishing emails, Stein said, with a lot of them purporting to be from the C-suite.

"There's a lot of vulnerabilities that are coming in, and Microsoft's not catching all of them," Stein said. "And they've even admitted to that."

Microsoft did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Kaspersky's email security offering provides the same anti-spam, anti-phishing, and anti-filtering protection as its peers, Stein said, but comes in at a friendlier price and doesn't overload monitoring and administration. Some email offerings from competitor require an IT administrator just for this portion, which Stein said can be difficult for resource-constrained clients.

In contrast, Stein said Kaspersky's email security offering provides enhanced visibility while still being lightweight and offering a simple initial set-up and rollout. The offering can just layer on top of the protection Microsoft provides around Office 365, according to Stein.

Nearly 70 percent of JBK Network Consulting's clients haven't embraced cloud security because they believe they're safe without it, according to Jim Grant, owner of the Bowling Green, Ky.-based solution provider. Grant frequently raises the exploits being thrown around in the cloud with customers, but said they aren't always receptive to the message.

"I have continual arguments with my customers on this," Grant said.

From an offering standpoint, Grant said Kaspersky provides more feature sets for the price around Office 365 than its peers. And in public cloud, Grant praises Kaspersky for delivering a complete feature set of offering around both Azure and AWS that provide protection down to the hypervisor level.

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