By: Lorna Garey, Channel Partners
**Editor’s Note: “7 Minutes” is a feature where we ask channel executives from startups – or companies that may be new to the Channel Partners audience – a series of quick questions about their businesses and channel programs.**
Because customers don’t have enough to worry about, the subset of the deep web known as the dark web is more than a place to buy illegal drugs, find bomb-making instructions and malware. It’s a busy marketplace for stolen data as well, with medical records fetching a premium. A recent study by Keeper Security says email address and password combos cost between 75 cents and $2.25; PayPal account credentials are $1.50; and a complete medical record fetches up to $1,000. University email account credentials are also popular.
ID Agent is looking to help partners offer affordable protection of client or end customer data. The company’s credential monitoring system scans the deep web for specific types of information. If a cache of compromised data is found, it can launch an incident response plan to monitor the information and, if misuse is detected, act to protect the victim’s identity. For larger breaches. partners may want to bring in a specialized incident-response provider.
IANS Research says dark web monitoring is an underserved market, meaning customers are potentially using consumer-grade or DIY options, like haveibeenpwned.com. We asked Matt Solomon, sales lead for ID Agent, to explain why MSPs and resellers should add Dark Web ID to the list of security services on offer.
Channel Partners: Tell us what customers love about your product or service. What’s the secret selling sauce?
Matt Solomon: Two elements we hear our customers rave about with Dark Web ID is that it truly provides a differentiator, something their customers haven’t had access to before. Dark Web ID combines human and sophisticated dark-web intelligence with search capabilities to identify, analyze and proactively monitor for your organization’s compromised or stolen employee and customer data. Additionally, our live data-prospecting tool is giving them the opportunity to start conversations with new prospects and reach back out to older prospects that haven’t yet come on board for their services.
CP: Describe your channel program — metal levels, heavy on certifications, open or selective, unique features?
MS: We welcome MSPs of all levels including strategic partners and resellers. We offer tiered options for tracking various amounts of customer domains, and as your MSP scales up, the cost per domain decreases. The packages also include access to our Live Data Prospecting tool. There are many benefits to partnering with us – high margins, sales enablement, dedicated channel team – highlighted here.
CP: Quick-hit answers: Percentage of sales through the channel, number of partners, average margin. Go.
MS: Currently, 80 percent of our sales is through the channel, and that percentage is growing. We do have some legacy enterprise accounts and still tackle enterprise-level customers that are not competing with our MSP partners. We currently have around 55 partners in the U.S. and the rest of the world. Margins are healthy. MSPs can usually offset the annual cost by incorporating our service into one or two client engagements thus leading to considerably higher-margin engagements.
CP: Who are your main competitors, and what makes your offering better?
MS: In the MSP/SMB space, we are uniquely priced with our offering and the first to serve this market aggressively with credential monitoring. I often get asked about “free dump sites,” but you get what you pay for. You often see outdated, repurposed or incomplete data with incorrect attribution. Being priced aggressively to sell into the SMB space, combined with the live prospecting tool, makes our offering extremely unique.
CP: How do you think your technology portfolio will change in the next three years?
MS: We are constantly enhancing the platform, looking at new ways to add insight and attribution. We have spent a considerable amount of R&D dollars on completing a fully automated monitoring platform that integrates in active directory and other systems of record to automate the security and incident-response capabilities. In the not-too-distant future, I expect the separation between corporate identity monitoring and personal identity monitoring to disappear. Organizations will have to consider both the organization’s and person’s identity monitoring as one in the same.
CP: How do you expect your channel strategy to evolve over that timeframe?
MS: I expect channel sales to become 90-95 percent of our business in the near future.
CP: What didn’t we ask that partners should know?
MS: What other downstream revenue opportunities do your partners have? For example, we have provided identity and credit monitoring services to millions of federal employees who had been exposed to breaches, and now we’re offering that same service to our partners so they can service their clients in either a pre-breach employee benefit offering or a post-breach response.
Want to learn more about the deep web? Join us at Channel Partners Evolution in Austin, Sept. 25-28, for our concurrent education session, Shining Light on the Dark Web, where we’ll discuss how the dark web works, what it means to businesses and ways to manage the threat it could represent. Register now!