Category Archives for "Managed Services News"

Jan 06

New, Changing Channel Programs: AT&T, Verizon, AWS, N-Able, Zoom, Tech Data

By | Managed Services News

Vendors are all about MDF, co-selling and partner portals these days.

Vendors continue to court the channel with market development funds, discounts and other financial incentives.

Investment in partners appears to be increasing all across the board. We’re seeing it in the networking space, with Juniper Networks expanding benefits for qualifying partners, and younger companies like Bandura Cyber getting in on the agent channel for the first time.

Multiple providers launched new partner portals last month. That includes Verizon, Lumen and Glasswall. Vendors seem to agree that automation and centralized visibility will help differentiate their partner experience from that of their competitors.

We’re also seeing some vendors double down on a co-selling strategy. That includes N-able, which is counting on direct-indirect teamwork to expand in Europe, and AWS, which reports channel integration success.

Scroll through the 17 images above to see the latest channel program updates.

Check out our November channel programs recap if you missed it.

Jan 06

New, Changing Channel Programs: AT&T, Verizon, AWS, N-Able, Zoom, Tech Data

By | Managed Services News

Vendors are all about MDF, co-selling and partner portals these days.

Vendors continue to court the channel with market development funds, discounts and other financial incentives.

Investment in partners appears to be increasing all across the board. We’re seeing it in the networking space, with Juniper Networks expanding benefits for qualifying partners, and younger companies like Bandura Cyber getting in on the agent channel for the first time.

Multiple providers launched new partner portals last month. That includes Verizon, Lumen and Glasswall. Vendors seem to agree that automation and centralized visibility will help differentiate their partner experience from that of their competitors.

We’re also seeing some vendors double down on a co-selling strategy. That includes N-able, which is counting on direct-indirect teamwork to expand in Europe, and AWS, which reports channel integration success.

Scroll through the 17 images above to see the latest channel program updates.

Check out our November channel programs recap if you missed it.

Jan 06

New, Changing Channel Programs: AT&T, Verizon, AWS, N-Able, Zoom, Tech Data

By | Managed Services News

Vendors are all about MDF, co-selling and partner portals these days.

Vendors continue to court the channel with market development funds, discounts and other financial incentives.

Investment in partners appears to be increasing all across the board. We’re seeing it in the networking space, with Juniper Networks expanding benefits for qualifying partners, and younger companies like Bandura Cyber getting in on the agent channel for the first time.

Multiple providers launched new partner portals last month. That includes Verizon, Lumen and Glasswall. Vendors seem to agree that automation and centralized visibility will help differentiate their partner experience from that of their competitors.

We’re also seeing some vendors double down on a co-selling strategy. That includes N-able, which is counting on direct-indirect teamwork to expand in Europe, and AWS, which reports channel integration success.

Scroll through the 17 images above to see the latest channel program updates.

Check out our November channel programs recap if you missed it.

Jan 06

New, Changing Channel Programs: AT&T, Verizon, AWS, N-Able, Zoom, Tech Data

By | Managed Services News

Vendors are all about MDF, co-selling and partner portals these days.

Vendors continue to court the channel with market development funds, discounts and other financial incentives.

Investment in partners appears to be increasing all across the board. We’re seeing it in the networking space, with Juniper Networks expanding benefits for qualifying partners, and younger companies like Bandura Cyber getting in on the agent channel for the first time.

Multiple providers launched new partner portals last month. That includes Verizon, Lumen and Glasswall. Vendors seem to agree that automation and centralized visibility will help differentiate their partner experience from that of their competitors.

We’re also seeing some vendors double down on a co-selling strategy. That includes N-able, which is counting on direct-indirect teamwork to expand in Europe, and AWS, which reports channel integration success.

Scroll through the 17 images above to see the latest channel program updates.

Check out our November channel programs recap if you missed it.

Jan 06

Dell Gives Popular Laptop Complete Redesign with Launch of XPS 13 Plus

By | Managed Services News

The redesigned XPS will have more power, an improved keyboard and slightly wider display.

Dell has taken the wraps off its XPS 13 Plus mobile PC, the new name of its popular business laptop. But it’s not just the brand that is new. A decade after launching the XPS 13, Dell has redesigned it with more power, improved usability and a modern look.

The company launched the XPS 13 Plus during the Consumer Electronics Show (CES).

Many new Dell features debuted on XPS laptops before making their way onto the company’s other mobile computing products. Most notably, the ultrathin bezels and compact design have made the XPS distinct from Dell’s other laptops. Making the XPS equally attractive is that Dell equips these laptops with the latest processors, memory options and storage capacity.

Pund-IT's Charles King

Pund-IT’s Charles King

“The XPS 13 fundamentally altered the company’s reputation for product design and aesthetics,” noted Pund-IT principal analyst Charles King. “The XPS 13 wasn’t just a new laptop line — it was a signpost indicating Dell Technologies’ future direction. Since then, next-gen XPS 13 solutions have steadily highlighted new features and technologies developed by Dell and strategic partners.”

Dell’s XPS 13 has become popular among executives and business users. But Dell is seeking to broaden the appeal of XPS with younger customers with the new XPS 13 Plus design. Company officials say they are targeting Gen Z customers (between the ages of 10 and 25).

“The XPS 13 [Plus] represents the next step in a journey to expand what people can experience and create in our XPS products,” said Nicholas DiLoreto, senior manager for industrial design at Dell.

Focus on Usability

The XPS 13 Plus will have a 13.4-inch display with a 16×10 aspect ratio. Three screen options will include the base FHD+ (1920 x 1200), a 3.5K (3456 x 2160) InfinityEdge OLED touch display or a 4K UHD+ (3840×2400).

A zero-lattice keyboard allows for larger keys that stretch to the edge of the laptop. Instead of function keys in the top row, it has a capacitive touch veneer that displays the functions. Users can toggle between functions displayed in that top row. Also on the keyboard is a glass touchpad with haptics.

Performance and Power

The XPS 13 Plus is Dell’s first XPS laptop with Intel’s new 12th Gen Intel Core processor. The addition of enlarged dual fans that Dell says provide a 55% improvement in airflow, allows for a 28W processor. The prior versions only supported 15W.

Dell said it was able to boost the power while still maintaining the XPS 13’s basic specs. The XPS 13 Plus is 0.60-inches thick, 11.6-inches wide and 7.8-inches deep, and weighs 2.73 lb.

The XPS 13 Plus also marks Dell’s introduction of a new aluminum processed chassis with hydropower, reducing its carbon makeup. The device will ship in new packaging consisting of 100% recycled or renewable content.

Scheduled to ship this spring, expect prices to start at $1,200. The XPS 13 Plus will be available with Windows 11 or a developer edition that runs Ubuntu 20.04.

UltraSharp 32 4K Video Conferencing Monitor

Dell is also debuting a new video conferencing monitor during CES. (Like most major companies, Dell officials are participating in CES virtually this year).

The new Dell UltraSharp 32 4K Video Conferencing Monitor is designed with an IPS Black panel and is certified for Microsoft Teams. Integrated into the display is Dell’s new UltraSharp Webcam, echo-canceling dual array microphones and 14W speakers.

Dell hasn’t disclosed pricing for the new display, which is scheduled to become available March 29.

 

Jan 06

Nitel Shakes Up Leadership Team Post-Private Equity Investment

By | Managed Services News

Nitel founders Rick Stern and Ron Grason have vacated their leadership roles two months after announcing a private equity investment.

Stern, the former CEO, and Grason, formerly president, have moved to board observer roles at the technology services provider. According to a news release, they remain “investors in the business.”

Shaw, Margi_Nitel

Nitel’s Margi Shaw

Margi Shaw has moved from chief operating officer to CEO. The company also promoted Mikail Shomade to chief operating officer and Mark Dickey to chief revenue officer.

Nitel announced its partnership with London-based private equity firm Cinven in November.

“Now, with the additional firepower of Cinven and an elite leadership team at the helm, we are poised to more tightly align with the needs of customers through growth and expansion,” Shaw said.

Shaw joined the Chicago-based company in 2020. Her past employers include Comcast Business, where she led engineering operations, and Illinois-based First Communications, where she was  president for six years.

Dickey, Mark_Nitel

Nitel’s Mark Dickey

Shomade, Mikail_Nitel

Nitel’s Mikail Shomade

Shomade, an alumnus of Cbeyond, Birch and Everstream, joined Nitel in 2018. He previously was chief business officer. He drove customer experience for the provider, helping lead the creation of a customer portal and operations support system.

Dickey had been working as Nitel’s executive vice president of sales and marketing. He moved from Oracle to Nitel in 2020. He will build Nitel sales by increasing marketing and “augmenting efforts in both the partner channel and Nitel’s wholesale business.”

Moving Forward

Cinven and Nitel leaders have indicated that they will deepen the company’s technology platform and pursue additional acquisitions. Nitel has found traction in managed WAN services, SD-WAN and cybersecurity, but will be exploring new technologies and more international customers, the company said.

“With this team in place, we have the leadership and expertise we need to fuel our growth,” Shaw said. “We’re excited to leverage a strong core business to expand our addressable market globally through a wider scope of services. And with a continued focus on the customer experience, customers looking to capitalize on the cloud and the partners who advise them all stand to benefit greatly.”

Nitel’s Ron Grason

Nitel’s Rick Stern

Stern and Grason launched Nitel in 2003. They told Channel Futures in November that Cinven chose Nitel in part because it values “founder-run” companies.

“They seemed to understand our model and the value of our model more than the other bidders, and we felt that they would be an excellent partner in the way that they were going to keep the business whole as it is and continue on as Nitel,” Stern said.

Jan 06

Credential Stuffing Compromises More Than 1.1 Million Online Accounts

By | Managed Services News

The millions of passwords in the wild tied to email addresses provides an easy attack vector.

A credential stuffing scheme has compromised more than 1.1 million online accounts in cyberattacks at 17 well-known companies.

That’s according to New York Attorney General Letitia James. Credential stuffing is a cyberattack  in which attackers use lists of compromised user credentials to breach into a system. Users tend to reuse the same passwords across multiple online services. This allows cybercriminals to use passwords stolen from one company for other online accounts.

New York Attorney General Letitia James

New York Attorney General Letitia James

“Right now, there are more than 15 billion stolen credentials being circulated across the internet, as users’ personal information stand in jeopardy,” James said.

An attacker that gains access to an account can use it in any number of ways. The attacker can view personal information associated with the account, including a name, address and past purchases. They can use this information in a phishing attack. If the account has a stored credit card or gift card, the attacker may be able to make fraudulent purchases.

Moreover, the attacker could sell the login credentials to another individual on the dark web.

Credential Stuffing Investigation

The Office of the Attorney General (OAG) compiled credentials to compromised accounts at 17 well-known companies. Those include online retailers, restaurant chains and food delivery services. In all, the OAG collected credentials for more than 1.1 million customer accounts. All appeared to have been compromised in credential stuffing attacks.

The OAG alerted each of the 17 companies to the compromised accounts. It urged the companies to investigate and take steps to protect impacted customers. Every company did so. The companies’ investigations revealed that most of the attacks had not previously been detected.

In light of the growing threat of credential stuffing, the OAG launched an investigation to identify businesses and consumers impacted by this attack vector. Over a period of several months, the OAG monitored several online communities dedicated to credential stuffing. It found thousands of posts with customer login credentials that attackers had tested in a credential stuffing attack. Moreover, it confirmed the credentials could be used to access customer accounts at websites or on apps.

The OAG also worked with the companies to determine how attackers had circumvented existing safeguards and provided recommendations for strengthening their data security programs to better secure customer accounts in the future. Over the course of the OAG’s investigation, nearly all of the companies implemented, or made plans to implement, additional safeguards.

Easy Attack Vector

James McQuiggan is security awareness advocate at KnowBe4.

KnowBe4's James McQuiggan

KnowBe4’s James McQuiggan

“With over 8.4 million passwords in the wild and over 3.5 billion of those passwords tied to actual email addresses, it provides a starting point and easy attack vector for cybercriminals to target various online sites that utilize accounts for their customers,” he said. “These types of attacks give access to personal information about the user, their tax information and of course, their Social Security numbers for them and possibly their immediate family. Additionally, cybercriminals recognize that many organizations or users will not implement additional security measures and use the same password across various website accounts.”

Organizations can protect their customers, users or employees by requiring a multifactor authentication (MFA) from an authenticator app or possibly an text message with a code needed to log in with the password, McQuiggan said.

“If users set up accounts with the previously exposed passwords, they are making it easy for cybercriminals to steal their data,” he said. “Users should ensure they are using strong passwords or passphrases for their various website accounts and, where available, MFA to secure their accounts. This way, in the event of a password credential stuffing attack, it will reduce their risk of exposure to losing their sensitive information.”

Stop Using Old Passwords

Users need to stop using old passwords that were involved in data breaches, McQuiggan said.

The easiest way to see if one’s accounts have been involved in a breach is to check HaveIBeenPwned.com, he said. It tracks email addresses and phone numbers that have been in data breaches over the past 15 years.

Sam Jones is vice president of product management at Stellar Cyber.

“The best practice for enterprises to prevent credential stuffing is to stick to the basics,” he said. “Enforce strong MFA and go passwordless if possible. For end users, given we still live in a password world, the best thing you can do is ensure you don’t reuse passwords across services.”

Jan 06

New, Changing Channel Programs: AT&T, Verizon, AWS, N-Able, Zoom, Tech Data

By | Managed Services News

Vendors are all about MDF, co-selling and partner portals these days.

Vendors continue to court the channel with market development funds, discounts and other financial incentives.

Investment in partners appears to be increasing all across the board. We’re seeing it in the networking space, with Juniper Networks expanding benefits for qualifying partners, and younger companies like Bandura Cyber getting in on the agent channel for the first time.

Multiple providers launched new partner portals last month. That includes Verizon, Lumen and Glasswall. Vendors seem to agree that automation and centralized visibility will help differentiate their partner experience from that of their competitors.

We’re also seeing some vendors double down on a co-selling strategy. That includes N-able, which is counting on direct-indirect teamwork to expand in Europe, and AWS, which reports channel integration success.

Scroll through the 17 images above to see the latest channel program updates.

Check out our November channel programs recap if you missed it.

Jan 06

HP Presence Will Be Present on New Commercial PCs, Workstations, Monitors

By | Managed Services News

HP is optimizing its CES 2022 lineup of commercial products with its new Presence video conferencing technology.

HP is refreshing its commercial PC, workstation and monitor portfolios with expanded support for its HP Presence video conferencing technology. The company unveiled the new wares this week in connection with the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2022 in Las Vegas.

Launched last fall, HP Presence includes software and hardware designed to simplify participation in and management of video conferences. The initial rollout included software and peripherals such as a standalone meeting controller, cameras, a soundbar and HP Presence Hub.

The October launch also comprised of a handful of PCs with Presence. Among them: the EliteOne 800 G8 All-in-One, the second-generation x360 Elite DragonFly Max and the HP Presence Mini Conferencing PC. Besides supporting the HP Presence software, these PCs are optimized for auto-frame, lowlight and backlight adjustment, two-way noise reduction and come with dual-facing 5MP webcams.

Now HP is including Presence broadly across this year’s crop of new commercial PCs, workstations and monitors. Specifically, that includes HP’s Elite Dragonfly, Elite, ProBook and Z Workstations. Further, the company is including HP Presence with one PC among its consumer brands, a new Envy desktop. Also, HP will ship several new monitors optimized for HP Presence.

HP's Andy Rhodes

HP’s Andy Rhodes

Moreover, HP is adding two new capabilities to the Presence software. The first is an appearance filter that uses artificial intelligence “to clean up and enhance the look of individuals in real-time,” said Andy Rhodes, general manager and head of HP’s commercial systems and display solutions group. The second is a new application called myHP. The latter is a customizable dashboard that lets users apply consistent video settings across the different conferencing solutions including Zoom, Microsoft Teams and Google Meet.

“In this new hybrid world, any little elements that distract from our productivity are very, very unnerving,” Rhodes said. “And so being able to do it very easily from one place, that’s what myHP is all about.”

Initially, HP will offer the new Presence features on the next generation of its Elite Dragonfly laptops launching at CES. HP will extend them to its other PCs and workstations later, Rhodes said.

Elite Dragonfly G3 for Windows 11

HP’s Elite Dragonfly, which the company introduced in 2019, has emerged as the company’s premium commercial mobile PC offering. The second-generation Elite Dragonfly debuted during last year’s CES. Now, HP is launching two new third-generation models, one with Windows 11 and the first Elite Dragonfly clamshell notebook.

The new Dragonfly G3 is powered by Intel’s 12th Gen processors. HP has enhanced the Elite Dragonfly with a 13.5-inch display and a 3:2 aspect ratio, which offers more vertical height.

HP's Ann Lai

HP’s Ann Lai

“With the benefits of a larger screen, we’ve also been able to redesign the rest of the product,” said Ann Lai, HP’s senior director of commercial experiences, software and conferencing solutions. “It’s more comfortable and you have more room to work.”

Lai added that the new Dragonfly has larger keys and a bigger trackpad. It has two USB-C Thunderbolt 4 ports and one USB-A 3.1 charging port and is available with three display options. It is also available with 4G LTE and 5G LTE connectivity and up to 32 GB of LPDDR5 RAM. Despite the slightly larger display, HP said it has maintained the 2.2 lb. weight of the Elite Dragonfly.

First Dragonfly Chromebook x360

HP is also adding its first x360 form factor Dragonfly Chromebook. Optimized for video collaboration, HP claims it’s also the first Chromebook with a haptic trackpad. Designed to provide a better user experience than traditional mechanical trackpads, haptic trackpads have become a staple of Apple MacBooks. More recently, haptic trackpads have begun appearing on Windows PCs.

The new DragonFly Chromebook is also the first to support Intel’s vPro security, according to Lai. It also supports 4G LTE and 5G LTE, has two USB-C Thunderbolt ports and one USB A 3.2. The Chromebook also works with the optional HP Wireless Rechargeable USI Pen.

A breakdown of 12 new PCs, workstations and displays launched at CES with support for HP Presence appears in the slideshow above.

 

Jan 06

This Week in Ransomware: New Mexico, Portugal, Hospitality Chain, More

By | Managed Services News

In one attack, hackers sent a fake news alert about the Portugal president’s removal from office.

This week in ransomware, cybercriminals unleashed a fresh onslaught of attacks targeting a wide variety of organizations.

The increasing volume of ransomware attacks has prompted our new feature, this week in ransomware. We’ll list the latest attacks along with commentary from cybersecurity experts.

Bitglass, a Forcepoint company, on Thursday announced findings from its 2021 Malware and Ransomware Report. It shows ransomware has become the No. 1 priority on the minds of IT and security leaders, and they expect the cyber threat to get worse. Compounding this problem is that IT and security teams are still trying to figure out how to deal with the rapidly proliferating ransomware threat.

The report, a joint venture with Cybersecurity Insiders, surveyed hundreds of cybersecurity professionals across numerous industries.

Ransomware a Growing Threat

According to the findings, 75% of respondents believe malware and ransomware will be a larger cyber threat to their organization in the next 12 months. As a result, organizations are tackling the malware and ransomware problem head on with increased spending (50%) and changing IT security strategies (40%).

Further insights from the report include:

  • Sixty-eight percent said they would not pay the ransom to recover data affected by a ransomware attack.
  • Lack of budget (50%), evolving and sophisticated attacks (49%) and growing proliferation of threats (36%) are obstacles IT security teams now face.
  • Cybercriminals continue to use classic social engineering techniques to get their ransomware into an organization. Those include phishing emails (61%), email attachments (47%) and user visiting malicious websites (39%).

Holger Schulze is founder of Cybersecurity Insiders.

Cybersecurity Insiders' Holger Schulze

Cybersecurity Insiders’ Holger Schulze

“With high-profile malware and ransomware attacks capturing recent headlines, organizations have elevated this problem to a top priority,” he said  “However, our research shows that IT and security teams face an uphill battle as they continue to struggle to figure out how to effectively deal with the looming ransomware threat.”

Scroll through our slideshow above for the latest ransomware news.

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