Microsoft hosted over 17,000 attendees at this year’s partner conference, now known as Microsoft Inspire, in DC this past June. There was a lot of excitement as new programs, capabilities, and offers were announced. Make no mistake, Microsoft is focused on driving Azure consumption this next year, and as a longtime partner, we’re excited to be working with new customers and partners to go after this opportunity.
Given their portfolio of products and services, I found myself double and triple booking myself to attend sessions. I’m still catching up watching videos for the sessions I was unable to attend. I wanted to highlight the key takeaways I left with for those of you in the same boat.
First, Azure will be a focus area for Microsoft field and partners this year. There are several new programs to help drive success, both in terms of aligning incentives between direct sellers and partners and to help accelerate managed services practices for Cloud Solution Providers. Alert Logic already partners with several leading CSPs, and they look to use to either provide all of the security monitoring for their customers or to augment their own security teams who may not be as able to keep up with their growth. We were highlighted* as a recommended ISV for new CSPs building out practices for Microsoft Azure. If you are a managed service provider, please check out our Azure partner page to learn how we can help you protect your customers (and for new partners, learn how you can get $3,000 in Azure CSP credits).
There were several security sessions as well. Ann Johnson’s breakout* session provided a great overview of their security offerings, especially how they work together across different services and products, and a great overview of the current landscape. I pulled a few slides* from Ann’s presentation that will hopefully encourage you to watch the video.
This is probably no surprise to you, but the threat landscape is evolving. Attacks are getting more sophisticated, and per a study by NACD highlighted in this session, the cost of cybersecurity will be over $2 trillion dollars in 2019.
Organizations are increasing looking for a managed security partner to help protect them. We’ve seen it with our own customers--it’s tough to do it on your own with multiple environments, tools, and applications that need protection. Here are some of the other priorities Ann highlighted in her session:
Microsoft spends over a billion dollars each year on security. This includes protecting their services like Azure and Office365, building and delivering security products and services, and acquiring industry leading technologies to integrate into their portfolio. These next two slides help you understand how these investments can help protect you across your entire IT environment:
(I know that is a lot of information – this presentation* goes deeper on each of the areas covered in the reference architecture.)
There is much more in the presentation worth mentioning, so I hope the above piqued your interest and you are excited to watch the presentation.
Finally, Microsoft announced Azure Stack is now ready to order. This technology allows you to deploy Azure in your datacenter or environments where you may not have access to the internet (also know colloquially as ‘submarine-mode’). This is a differentiated offering to how other cloud platforms are tackling the hybrid-cloud model, and this may address some of the challenges that have prevented workloads moving into the public cloud.
The next few months are going to be interesting as Microsoft and partners work together to get your business to the cloud. Whether you are a prospective partner or an organization making the move to Azure, we would love to speak with you and discuss how we can help you achieve your goals without putting your initiatives, or your company, at risk.
We will be at the Microsoft Ignite tradeshow this September, and are delivering Azure focused Cloud Security Summits in San Francisco, New York City, and Dallas this year. Please see our events page for more information, and we hope to see you there.
PS – if you are in the process of evaluating Azure, or looking to expand your existing use, you may want to check out this updated eBook from Microsoft on how to transform your business by moving to the cloud.
*Please note that we included several links to the 2017 Microsoft Inspire presentations that may only be accessible if you have login access to the Microsoft Inspire Partner portal.