Priyanka Pugaokar

cloud

Mumbai: In recent years, cloud computing is gaining prominence in India and the growth of cloud vendors such as Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure reflects the uptake on the adoption of the cloud model.

According to a TechSci report, the cloud services market in India is projected to grow at CAGR of 22 per cent during 2015-2020. Although the cloud business is growing rapidly, the public cloud adoption is plagued by data security and reliability issue. In addition, the dearth of quality IT infrastructure is hampering the widespread adoption of cloud services in India. Hence, the cloud services security provider (CSSP) model is gaining traction in the country, where partners can play a vital role in addressing the security issues associated with the migration to the cloud.

In an exclusive interaction with Channel Times, Anil Bhasin, Managing Director, India and SAARC of Palo Alto Networks, highlighted how security vendors can become enablers of the adoption of the CSSPs model in India.

“Cloud is a huge reality in India and customers are looking at cloud for cost saving and agility. The question though is how much movement of applications we would see on cloud and what would those applications be. Security is one of the obstacles in moving to cloud and here CSSPs will come in a big way. CSSPs will see huge adoption in India in the coming years. We as a security vendor are supporting the CSSP program globally and in India,” Bhasin said.

US based next-generation security company, Palo Alto Networks offers both on-premise and cloud based security to enterprises. The company recently organised its first ever cyber security summit in India, where it talked about its vision of prevention focused cyber security approach and also showcased its some of the latest security solutions to its partners and customers.

Palo Alto Networks has an indirect engagement in India and all its products and solution offerings routes through partners. The company now intends to build a strong network of security specialist partners in India. “There are certain channel partners who do almost everything. But we believe that this approach is not appreciable for a niche area like security. Therefore, we are looking for specialist partners, who have certain expertise around security,” Bhasin said.

Globally Palo Alto Networks works with alliance and technology partners such as VMware, Citrix, Aruba, Arista, RSA, Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure to name a few. The company is also focusing on building unconventional channels. According to Bhasin, these unconventional partnerships are as strategic as the traditional channels.

“We work very closely with VMware for datacenter virtualization. We work with Arista on the cloud side and we also have different engagements with other strategic partners. We leverage our channel strengths in terms of giving customers consultancy, professional services and operational services”, Bhasin said.

In India, Palo Alto Networks has over 200 SI partners offering various solutions of the company. Basin shared his thoughts on the much talked about MSSP model among the Indian channels. “MSSP as a concept has been there since long in the Indian market. It is nothing but the outcome driven services, whether it is based on SLA or any other financial model. MSSP model does become very key go to market in the SMEs sector, where you don’t have very large IT teams and massive infrastructure. So we definitely see the requests coming in but the top end of the market is still dominated by the traditional channels,” he said.

Speaking about the key thrust areas of Palo Alto Networks in 2017, Bhasin said, “We will continue to build a strong ecosystem of security specialist partners in India. We would like to earn our trust with customers as cyber security partners and not as an OVM. Our focus area will be to work with every customer who believes that cyber security is an important aspect of their business. We will also focus on reshaping the thinking of the market education in terms of importance of cyber security.”