VARs: Unsure About Your Managed Services Strategy?Take Baby Steps and Use the Right Tools

NORTHBROOK, IL, June 6, 2006 – Vendors of all shapes and sizes are boisterously pitching managed services as the next big revenue stream for VARs. An entire industry of software tools has sprung up, virtually overnight, to help VARs become MSPs. But many VARs don’t understand how much the shift fundamentally alters their business model.

A few vendors still caution VARs to test the waters with less dramatic toe-in-the-water pilot projects. “You might be ready to offer managed services, but you first want to make sure your customers are ready to buy managed services,” said Brandon Buhai, COO of Beyond-IP, LCC. “We’ve seen too many VARs leap on these trends before their customers are ready.”

To explore the waters of managed services, Buhai recommends VARs first look for low-cost, low-risk product offerings that can be delivered as managed services and/or offered as a stand-alone product. This gives the customer a choice and helps the VARs evaluate and adequately prepare for rolling-out managed services in the future.

One example is Beyond-IP’s Automated Scanning -- an automated vulnerability management appliance that performs a security mapping of a client network and simulates attacks originating from either the internal or the external network.

Beyond-IP’s Automated Scanning is available within a security operating center (SOC), an ASP farm, collocation or as an outsourced service. With so many choices, the Automated Scanning Vulnerability assessment solution can quickly become part of a VAR’s business.

Once the security scanning is complete, the software generates a detailed vulnerability report specifying the security breaches, along with practical solutions to fix those vulnerabilities. This data can be easily used to meet client needs and instruct VARs on which services to sell.

Managed tools should not only provide clients valuable analyses of their network assets and security situation, but also help VARs leverage the same data to guide their upselling strategy to further penetrate accounts.

“The security sale is a natural sale,” said Buhai “because it fits with existing business models.”

Beyond-IP’s system allows VARs to locate and expose security breaches and vulnerabilities, listing their exact location and description, complete with suggested solutions. The system is able to either simultaneously scan all pre-configured IP addresses or schedule tests for specific IP’s at specific times.

“Beyond-IP’s scan gives the specialist absolutely all the information available on any IP at any given time. This is a distinct advantage over traditional, ad-hoc vulnerability testing solutions that take more time to produce less comprehensive results in a less efficient manner.” Buhai adds, “Automated Scanning gives specialists complete information about his hosts at any specific time, allowing him to better manage his security function.”

Each scan includes the widest range of security tests available today. The Automated Scanning mechanism, updated 3 times daily for new vulnerabilities, includes general security tests, specific tests for Windows 9x/NT/2000/XP/2003, UNIX, Novell, etc., and special firewall, application-level, and network router checks.

About Beyond-IP, LLC

For organizations concerned about regulatory compliance or dissatisfied with the network security audit services provided by their consulting firms, Beyond-IP provides an Automated Vulnerability Management Appliance that provides a higher quality, lower cost network vulnerability assessment and management than any other alternative. The Automated Vulnerability Management Appliances performs a security mapping of your network and simulates attacks originating from either the internal or the external network. Once the security scanning is complete, the software generates a detailed vulnerability report specifying the security breaches, along with practical solutions to fix those vulnerabilities. Beyond-IP’s solutions allow simplified measurement, monitoring and management of vulnerabilities over time. To learn more, visit www.beyond-ip.com.

Contact for Beyond-IP, LLC

Ben Bradley
ben@maconraine.com
630-221-9844