• United States
larry chaffin
CEO and Chairman of Pluto Cloud Services

A conversations with Yuval Baron CEO of AlgoSec

Aug 17, 20116 mins
Cisco SystemsData BreachData Center

Yuval talks about what makes his company different and a leader

 Today I am going to continue my conversations with market and vendor CEO’s. Today our guest is Yuval Baron CEO of AlgoSec.  I would like to thank Yuval for taking the time to answer my questions and provide us with more insight to his company and himself. What is the state of the network security policy management market and do you still see growth? Even though firewalls have been deployed for nearly 20 years, it took some time for solutions like ours, that help organizations automate security policy management, to emerge and mature. I am happy to say that the market for network security policy continues to grow at an impressive rate and AlgoSec is experiencing triple digit growth in 2011. For those familiar with Geoffrey Moore’s technology adoption lifecycle, I would say our market has certainly “crossed the chasm” and is now entering the “tornado” stage. As such, all signs point to continued growth of the category.There are a handful of players in this space, all of which have good products and are worthy competitors. I don’t think one competitor stands out from the rest across all regions as far as we are concerned. We dedicate most of our effort and focus meeting the customer’s needs and ensuring they are satisfied.

Who do you see as your biggest competitor and why?

Yuvol Baron

The category has originally focused on firewalls, which are by far the most difficult and time-consuming to manage. (This has been validated in a survey> that we conducted earlier this year.) That said, we are constantly evaluating expanding our offering to additional devices where we feel we can automate complex security management processes for organizations.Well I would like to keep some surprises in the bag for our customers, and the market. But I can say that we will be adding support for next-generation firewalls in the next version, among many other exciting capabilities. Version 6.1 which we have just released contains more features that help customers automate key workflows. For example, we have added an out-of-the-box workflow for removing firewall rules. It’s a well-known fact that firewall rules are added but are rarely removed because of lack of visibility into the impact of removing them. We heard from a major financial organization that it took them 3 years of hard work to reduce the size of their firewall rule-set from 1400 to 750. Automation would have saved them many millions of dollars.  Our market segment has to further grow to become attractive to the big players to enter it themselves or acquire vendors. The market is growing fast so this may change quickly. On the other hand, I don’t see smaller entrants entering this space, as the existing players have been around for several years and have made a  substantial investment.What new verticals, segments do you see AlgoSec moving into within the next few years?One vertical that we are focusing on increasingly is Managed Security Service Providers (MSSPs) which are under increased pressure to both optimize their service delivery and increase their revenues by providing additional services to their customers. AlgoSec’s solutions are uniquely positioned in a sense that they allow MSSPs to do both. We have been fortunate to work with some of the world’s leading MSSP to better tailor or products to their needs. For example recently Dimension Data> integrated AlgoSec to streamline and automate security operations for clients and generate incremental revenue from new policy compliance management services. Additionally they reduced cost of service and improved quality of service. Absolutely, I think our solutions are quickly becoming “must-have” for every organization with more than handful of firewalls. Most organizations that find out about this space end up purchasing a solution, and one of our biggest challenges is to raise awareness for AlgoSec and the category.In addition to questions about technology and roadmap, I think every customer wants to feel safe about his or her purchase and wants reassurance that the vendor will be there to help after the sale takes place, not just before it. I often speak to potential customers to reiterate our commitment to making them successful, including our unique money-back guarantee. Perhaps more importantly, I regularly speak to customers after we have sold to them to make sure they are satisfied.Do you see AlgoSec doubling in sales within 5 years?We have more than doubled our sales in the first 6 months of 2011 compared to the same period last year, so we expect our sales to grow by 500%-1,000% in the next 5 years.Some people think that AlgoSec offering is similar to other companies.We already have technology partnerships with all major firewall vendors and additional players in the change management space  such as HP and BMC. These partnerships are important to our customers and to us. iPad, iPhone or Android? Which do you own?Believe it or not, none of the above.  However, I prefer open systems and thus I’m in favor of Android.I play the clarinet. When I was young I played in a band. I like to listen to Jazz music.I like to travel. A few weeks ago I had a wonderful vacation in Costa Rica. If you visit there – I recommend the Royal Corin hotel near Volcano Arenal. I ride mountain bikes a lot. This is my favorite vehicle.

Will we one day see network security policy management move into new markets or products?

Where do you see your product expanding to next and what new options will you add to the current product?

Do you see consolidation in the marketplace or more companies starting up in this space?

Let’s talk about the cloud, what is AlgoSec doing in the cloud now?

Cloud means more virtualization of everything, and specific to our space, firewalls and security devices. We already shaped our offerings to enable organizations to seamlessly manage the security policy in a virtualized environment.

Additionally many MSSPs are managing firewalls in the cloud for their customers. We are enabling them to streamline service delivery and ultimately serve more clients at a lower cost. We also enable MSSPs to provide services around compliance, risk assessment and security policy optimization, in which they provide their customers much needed visibility and control over the security policy.

Could you one day see every network operations center with AlgoSec Security Management Suite?

What is the one question when meeting with potential customers that you get the most and why?

What is the biggest misconception about AlgoSec that people believe or hear?

Once they take a close look they often realize that AlgoSec offers more profound technology, more automation and better customer approach.

If you could partner with one company right now to expand your product line or sales who would it be and why?

What kind of songs are on your MP3 player?

Being an executive like myself you have to have a release. Mine is golf or my handheld satellite radio. What is yours?

Fly, drive or train; which would you take the most if you had the chance?