Sonic Wall Sets Blistering Pace of Channel Sign Ups and Launches Sonic Wall University and Marketing Programs

SonicWall announced key milestones since it spun off as an independent cybersecurity company and introduced the SonicWall SecureFirst Partner Program on November 1, 2016. Over 10,000 partners have already registered as SonicWall resellers, and the SecureFirst Partner Program is now open to partners in Asia Pacific. Today SonicWall also introduced two initiatives designed to help these partners secure customers in the shifting cyber arms race – SonicWall University to train partners on cybersecurity, and new global marketing programs and incentives to help the SonicWall channel deliver their cybersecurity solutions and services for small and medium-size businesses (SMBs).

Partners Flock to SonicWall in Record Numbers
In its first 150 days as an independent company, SonicWall has charted unprecedented growth in partner engagement across numerous metrics, including:

·         Since launching the SecureFirst Partner Program, which provides expanded sales and technical enablement in addition to aggressive partner rewards and deal protection, over 10,000 partners have registered in 150 days.
·         Partners have registered for SecureFirst from 90 countries, underscoring the global nature of the cyber arms race and the extensive reach of SonicWall’s channel. This number is expected to climb, as today the SecureFirst Partner Program launches in Asian Pacific.
·         Record numbers of partners have participated in SonicWall educational events, including attendance at SonicWall Virtual PEAK Performance in March 2017 which more than doubled year-over-year to over 1,300 partners. 

“The response from SonicWall’s channel partners to our spin out far exceeded even our own expectations,” said Bill Conner, President and CEO, SonicWall. “We’re excited that 10,000 partners have already joined the SecureFirst Partner Program and pleased to welcome 2,000 new partners to SonicWall. Today, we are announcing major investments in education and marketing to help enable these 10,000 partners to assist their customers with securing their business. We know these cyber threats are shifting and small to medium-size businesses are increasingly becoming targets, but they often lack in-house expertise and rely on trusted partners to keep their infrastructure secure.”

SMBs Face Mounting Cybersecurity Challenges
SonicWall has also made unprecedented investments in mining and analyzing data collected by the SonicWall Global Response Intelligent Defense (GRID) Threat Network which collects real-time data from more than a million sensors worldwide. Key findings as reported in the SonicWall 2017 Annual Threat Report include that ransomware attack attempts, one of the most insidious new threats, grew by 167 times year-over-year to 638 million and in the majority of cases is launched via email. Additionally, SonicWall research shows that 62 percent of Internet sessions are now encrypted with either SSL or TLS, providing greater data security but also building a dark channel that threat actors can leverage to launch encrypted attacks.

Many small to medium-size businesses are extremely shorthanded when it comes to having the resources on hand to address these new advanced threats. Information security non-profit ISACA predicts a shortage of two million cybersecurity professionals by 2019. Partners are invaluable IT consultants helping SMBs put in place the technologies to detect and prevent security breaches, but partners continue to clamor for more focused real-time education.

New SonicWall University Enables Partners to Bridge the Cybersecurity Threats and Skills Gap
To address the lack of trained cybersecurity resources available to SMBs and enable SonicWall partners to provide the best real-time industry offerings to their customers, SonicWall unveiled today SonicWall University. This channel enablement program is designed as an extension of the SecureFirst Partner Program, helping communicate insights SonicWall has gleaned from the SonicWall GRID Threat Network to the partner community in a structure they can learn from easily.

More than 5,600 individuals in the SonicWall channel already have earned technical certifications through existing SonicWall certification programs which will continue. Now partners can also access SonicWall University with rich enablement content, tools and resources delivered via an on-demand, web-based platform. SonicWall University highlights include: 

·         Specialized, role-based training and accreditation tailored to the three different audiences of sales, systems engineers and support team members. This opens up training to new audiences beyond traditional post-sales technical certification.
·         All of the training modules SonicWall uses to educate its own employees are now available to partners, and will be updated regularly with up-to-the-minute content based on the SonicWall GRID Threat Network.
·         In addition to the curriculum developed by SonicWall, third-party content from industry sources as well as SonicWall partner-contributed content will be hosted. SonicWall expects this partner-to-partner collaboration and enablement to scale up significantly and accelerate knowledge transfer for all who participate.

“Since SonicWall became an independent company focused 100 percent on cybersecurity solutions and 100 percent on channel fulfilment, we have seen a massive spike in partner engagement,” said Steve Pataky, Vice President, Worldwide Security Sales, SonicWall. “The interest partners have shown in the SecureFirst Partner Program, and the early buzz by partners about today’s launch of SonicWall University, underscores just how big of a priority high-quality enablement is to continuing to deliver the best possible security solutions through our partners. With these enablement programs, customers can turn to any one of our army of 10,000 proven and fortified partners to protect themselves against shifting cybersecurity threats.”

New Marketing Initiatives Shift Focus from Breach Detection to Breach Prevention
In addition to SonicWall University, SonicWall unveiled today a major marketing campaign in response to partner requests to help educate prospective and current customers on the most pressing cyber  threats today. Partners can access prepackaged campaign materials and apply for market development funds online through a new SonicWall Partner Portal. Partners can earn special discounts and rebates for using these programs to drive business.

The goal of the campaign is to help partners educate their customers on how to best protect their infrastructure from today’s cybersecurity threats. SonicWall’s next-generation, real-time cyber defense platform, which is built on a cloud-based multi-engine sandbox that captures malware to not only identify but also automatically block advanced threats. This capability is uniquely designed to help SMBs who lack the internal resources to pore through volumes of data on potential threats and react in time to prevent security breaches. SonicWall’s new marketing campaign will help educate SMBs on the three most prominent threats, identified in the SonicWall 2017 Annual Threat Report:

·         How to stop ransomware, using multi-engine cloud-based sandboxing.
·         How to protect against SSL and TLS encrypted threats using a next generation firewall with SSL/TLS Deep Packet Inspection (DPI). 
·         How to catch advanced phishing and other email-borne attacks using an email security solution with multi-engine cloud based sandboxing. 

SonicWall channel partners from around the globe have been supportive of all the partner enablement initiatives, including the launch of the SonicWall University and the global marketing campaign:

From APJ: “As a partner in Asia Pacific, we are delighted with the enhanced access and investment of the new on-demand technical resources and courses SonicWall University delivers to our teams,” said Cary Wu, SecuUnion. “Since SonicWall has been independent, we have continued to push boundaries and together we have built more opportunity. SonicWall's excellent track record of committing to innovation and delivering on their promise to better protect our customers is something we can always count on.”

Availability of SonicWall University
The SonicWall SecureFirst Partner Program is open today to partners in the Asia Pacific region. The program introduces improved partner rewards, deal protection and expanded technical enablement on the SonicWall portfolio. Please visit the SonicWall SecureFirst Partner registration page to learn more and sign up.

SonicWall University is available globally now at no cost to authorized partners participating in the SonicWall SecureFirst Partner Program.