5 Companies That Had A Rough Week

The Week Ending May 12

Topping this week's roundup of companies that had a rough week is Tanium, which saw its OEM relationship with VMware come to an end this week.

Also making the list this week were distributor ScanSource, whose third-quarter sales took a hit from uncertainty created by Avaya's recent bankruptcy filing, and Cisco, Microsoft and Intel – all of whom scrambled to fix significant security flaws in their products.

Not everyone in the IT industry was having a rough go of it this week. For a rundown of companies that made smart decisions, executed savvy strategic moves – or just had good luck – check out this week's Five Companies That Came To Win roundup.

Tanium Challenges Continue As VMware Ends OEM Relationship

Tanium was hit with the latest in a series of challenges this week when VMware ended its OEM relationship with the cybersecurity technology company. Sources told CRN the breaking point came over conflicts related to the OEM deal payment structure and challenges in supporting Tanium's complicated technology.

Multiple sources told CRN that VMware had ended the relationship with Tanium and began informing its channel partners. Spokespeople for both companies described the end of the OEM deal as a mutual decision and said the two would work to service joint customers.

In recent weeks Tanium has been hit by reports of a troubled company culture and was criticized for exposing a client's private network information without permission in demonstrations. The company has also been hit by a number of top-level executive departures, most recently CFO and COO Eric Brown in March.

ScanSource Sales Take A Hit From Avaya Bankruptcy

ScanSource, a distributor for Avaya networking technology, saw its Q3 sales hit by a slowdown in Avaya-related sales – a situation ScanSource executives blamed, in part, on the uncertainty created by Avaya's recent Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing.

This week ScanSource CEO Mike Baur said some of Avaya's large enterprise customers had delayed upgrade and expansion decisions because of Avaya's bankruptcy filing in January. That led to a decline in Avaya-related sales for ScanSource.

Avaya is one of three vendors, along with Cisco and Zebra, which accounted for more than 10 percent of ScanSource's overall sales in fiscal 2016.

ScanSource reported that communications and services revenue dipped 2.1 percent in the quarter with uncertainty around the Avaya bankruptcy partially to blame.

Intel vPro Security Flaw Potentially Affects Thousands Of Enterprise PCs

Intel disclosed this week that its vPro processors have a security flaw that hackers could use to hijack computers.

The security flaw affects vPro processors that businesses purchase and deploy to secure large fleets of PCs. The flaw can potentially allow attackers to gain control of the manageability features on those systems.

Intel said it was working to address the problem as quickly as possible with computer makers expected to begin making updates this week.

The news comes just a week after Intel disclosed a critical flaw in the remote management features of processors in its Active Management Technology, Intel Small Business Technology and Intel Standard Manageability technology.

Microsoft Issues Emergency Patch For Critical Anti-Malware Security Flaw

Intel wasn't the only company scrambling this week to fix a security vulnerability. Microsoft developed and issued an emergency update to fix a flaw in the Windows anti-malware software that could not only allow hackers to bypass Windows protections, but to take control of a device

Security experts like the Krebs on Security website said the flaw was the most serious Windows bug in recent memory. Microsoft issued the patch on Monday, one day ahead of its traditional "Patch Tuesday" rollout of software fixes.

The flaw was discovered over the weekend by Google security researcher Tavis Ormandy.

Cisco Patches WikiLeaks Security Vulnerability Affecting Hundreds Of Devices

And sticking with the theme of security flaws, Cisco this week said it had patched a critical flaw in its IOS software – a problem that affected more than 300 models of Cisco routers and switches.

The security flaw could allow attackers to remotely execute malicious code and take control of the affected devices. Cisco's Catalyst switches were most affected, along with Cisco's IE 2000 and 4000 Industrial Ethernet switching series.

The vulnerability originally came to light in March after WikiLeaks exposed CIA documents.