Kaspersky has hired RSA sales leader Randall Richard to grow the company’s threat intelligence business and revolutionize its approach to the channel in the enterprise.
The Moscow-based platform security vendor has tasked Richard with extending the company’s threat intelligence engagements beyond the Fortune 10 to service businesses in the Fortune 100 or Fortune 200, Richard told CRN exclusively. Randall started Feb. 10 as head of enterprise sales at Kaspersky North America after nearly four years as the global sales manager for RSA’s fraud and risk intelligence division.
“People tend to have the tools they need to give them visibility,” Richard said. “But now it’s all about gaining context and understanding around what you’re seeing.”
Kaspersky has historically been more focused on generalist VARs and MSPs who could sell their endpoint security technology into a large quantity of businesses, Richard said. But when it comes to consuming threat intelligence, Richard said customers want to work with partners that have a more sophisticated and mature security practice capable of providing guidance and thought leadership.
As a result, Richard said Kaspersky has begun talking with MSSPs that have dedicated incident response teams as well as channel partners that have developed portals capable of ingesting Kaspersky’s threat intelligence and offering it up to their customers. Most Kaspersky enterprise security partners today also serve SMB customers, but Richard said a new initiative for Kaspersky is to have enterprise-only partners.
Richard said Kaspersky is taking to market threat intelligence bundles that include machine-readable threat feeds that address everything from phishing to malicious hashes. Clients can consume a single Kaspersky threat feed or fuse several of them together, according to Richard.
For more sophisticated organizations, Richard said Kaspersky also offers APT (Advanced Persistent Threat) reports about the most pernicious targeted threats that can be devastating when they hit. These APT reports are typically consumed by larger organizations, but Richard said slightly smaller organizations with sensitive data and networks might also be interested in them as well.
Richard said Kaspersky’s enterprise sales organization has been doing lots of proof of concepts (POCs), offering partners and customers the chance to look at the company’s intelligence and see if it fits their use cases. The company has put together offerings that address phishing attacks orchestrated by bad actors that prey on people’s fear around COVID-19 to get them to click on malicious links or content.
Kaspersky and its partners last year did a great job of staying close with existing customers and improving their renewal rates, Richard said. This year, Richard said Kaspersky is focused both on growing the number of partners the company is working with as well as growing the number of net new business opportunities identified by partners.
Kaspersky North America has more ambitious revenue goals this year, and in order to hit those numbers, Richard said the company must identify ways that make sense for existing customers to increase their investment with the company. Richard believes that can be achieved primarily through growth of Kaspersky’s cyber threat intelligence portfolio.
“I’m really focused on customer intimacy and making sure that we have that trusted advisor status with our customers,” Richard said. “And I feel the channel has really set the standard for that.”