With hacks, malware, and more continuing to make headlines almost every day, security has become more important than ever. Add to it the fact that the past year has brought remote work to the fore, which means it’s important to ensure employees stay safe too. Barracuda Networks is one such company that offers security products for protection against email, web surfing, spam, spyware, and more. Started in 2003, it’s currently a leading company in the security space. We got a chance to talk to its Country Manager for the Indian market – Murali Urs – about various offerings by Barracuda Networks, what makes it stand out from the rivals, and what’s next for the company.

PS: the interview has been edited for the sake of brevity.

1. Could you give us an overview of Barracuda Network’s offerings, and what ties them all together?

Barracuda was one of the first companies to identify the issue of spam and develop solutions to tackle them. Since then, we have always been the leading email security vendor and have evolved to offer more SaaS security solutions across email protection, network and application, public cloud, and data protection.

Cybersecurity is increasingly becoming a priority and area of focus for countless organizations across all verticals. Barracuda envisions a safer world and believes every business deserves access to enterprise-grade security solutions that are easy to buy, deploy, and use. We protect email, networks, data, and applications with innovative solutions that grow and adapt to our customer’s journey. The mix of our product offerings gives a multi-layered approach that provides comprehensive protection to safeguard our customer’s business journey against multiple threat vectors.

2. Security is such a vast space – where exactly does Barracuda Networks’ products like email protection, application and cloud security, network security, and more slot in?

We at Barracuda offer an extensive product portfolio that covers email, application, and cloud security, networks security, and data protection.

1) Email Protection: While email continues to be the number one threat vector to businesses, malevolent hackers today use familiar language, deceptive domains, and numerous other tactics to bypass traditional email security controls in attempts to gain access to people, data, and finances. Barracuda offers Barracuda Total Email Protection, a comprehensive email security solution bundle combining advanced inbox defense, brand protection, incident response and security awareness training against social engineering attacks including business email compromise, account takeover and phishing email. Barracuda Sentinel integrates directly with Office 365 APIs to detect threats that traditional email security systems can’t. It provides AI-based protection against phishing and account takeover. Meanwhile, Barracuda Essentials provides multiple layers of security and filtering that can prevent advanced email threats like ransomware and email impersonation. The Total Email Protection gives comprehensive email protection to secure user’s business from sophisticated email-borne threats.

2) Application and Cloud Security: Application attacks are becoming increasingly complex. Our integrated Barracuda Cloud Application Protection brings a comprehensive set of interoperable capabilities together to ensure complete application security in one simple platform. Barracuda Web Application Firewall, which is a part of the Barracuda Cloud Application Protection makes the security of websites and applications from advanced cyber-threats simpler. For many organizations using traditional web application firewalls, configuring the same can take days of effort. Barracuda WAF-as-a-Service breaks the mold by offering a full-featured, cloud-delivered application security service. Deploying it, configuring it, and putting it into full production can protect all the apps from any kind of threats.

3) Data Protection: The explosion of data shared between users and businesses in the last decade has necessitated an expansion of the language that protects said data. Whether government-regulated or provided as protection within the terms of service of a company, safeguarding data is essential. Barracuda Cloud-to-Cloud Backup is a fast and resilient backup platform to protect data in Microsoft Office 365 including Teams, Exchange Online, SharePoint, and OneDrive. Meanwhile, keeping today’s complex infrastructures and targeted cyber-attacks in mind, require a complete backup strategy that protects data wherever it resides— on‑premises or in the cloud.

4) Network Security: To ensure effective network security, Barracuda CloudGen Firewalls deliver advanced security by tightly integrating a comprehensive set of next-generation firewall technologies. With protection for the entire network perimeter, it stops cybercriminals before they can reach your data. Meanwhile, as more consumers and businesses are becoming aware of the data breaches, there will be increasing discussion about the role of trust in security. Trust-based solutions that implement Zero Trust solutions will be effective mechanisms to manage privileged access to services. Barracuda CloudGen Access’ zero trust model establishes unparalleled access control across users and devices without the performance pitfalls of a traditional VPN. It provides remote, conditional, and contextual access to resources and reduces over-privileged access and associated third-party risks.

3. Are there any specific type of organizations that use Barracuda?

Cybercrime will go where money can be made with simple methods like spear-phishing, malware, and ransomware to create the most damage. In fact, any business that has customers, employees, and transactions is a target, therefore, every industry needs to make sure it is prepared to deal with security issues. The COVID-19 pandemic and the transformational pressure it has created on work habits and work environments will continue to provide increased attack surfaces. With enterprises remaining distributed and remote workers continuing to be vulnerable to human error for attacks, every business, from all sizes and all industries, needs to have the highest level of vigilance against those who would take advantage of this situation and should team up with a trusted security partner to secure its business, data, and users.

4. How does Barracuda stand out from the competition since the space has established players as well as new-age startups?

From 2003 till today, Barracuda Networks has continued to focus on its five core values: think customer, drive innovation, take ownership, deliver outcomes, and succeed together.

Barracuda is a channel-dedicated company and values all partnerships. Our award-winning partner program helps our channel partners strengthen and scale their offerings to win more business. We provide training and certification on the product and technology knowledge to our partners, and when their clients will require their services to overcome, this better position them to help their clients achieve their goals. Depending on a partner’s needs, different levels of participation in the program are available. These include sales support such as free customer evaluations, joint account calls, or online demo access; marketing support with tools for lead generation and brand awareness; as well as product training with interactive webinars or onsite training. These enable our partners to go to market with the best products, services, and support in the industry.

Moreover, we are an innovator in the market to deliver security products that are easy to buy, deploy and use. We are the first security provider to offer firewalls and secure SD-WAN service built natively on Microsoft Azure. We have been introducing innovative products and technology that are relevant to the market and customer needs. For instance, Barracuda extended zero trust capability with Barracuda CloudGen Access to secure remote access under distributed enterprise environment. Recently, we also upgraded Barracuda Cloud-to-Cloud Backup that lends users the flexibility to restore Microsoft Office 365 data from Teams, Exchange, SharePoint, and OneDrive data either fully or with highly granular detail.

We adopt a customer-centric approach. We have over 350 people providing the customers 24×7 technical support via phone, live chat, online portal, and e-mail, which has helped our organization drive high customer retention of 110 percent. Meanwhile, we are also investing in brand marketing to ensure that our customers know and trust us and as well as our partners.

5. Could you shed a light on your marketing strategy?

We have always believed in offering our customers world-class products, services, and support and so our marketing strategy has been aligned with the same approach. Our primary target is to emphasize the customer experience throughout the journey and stay committed to our partners. To make it possible, we are going to make investments in brand marketing to ensure that the customers know and trust us and also our partners. For instance, Barracuda has been developing qualified leads, co-op funding, ready-made programs, co-partner promotions, and hosting its own webinars and annual partner and customer conferences with its partners to educate them on the latest security issues and update them on Barracuda’s newest innovations.

Meanwhile, Barracuda Networks continues to keep its partners up to date with the latest industry trends, product, and market knowledge, through webinars, workshops, and annual events.

6. How has the ongoing pandemic affected Barracuda – both in terms of users and the business itself?

The evolving threat landscape under the pandemic makes security a priority for businesses. Cybercriminals have been capitalizing on the global pandemic to launch new attacks, for example, our recent research finds attackers have shifted to leveraging the vaccine in their targeted spear-phishing attacks to steal money and personal information. The threat landscape is becoming more challenging as cybercrime will go where money can be made. This means every industry should be prepared to deal with security issues. Thus, to tackle such a threat landscape, we at Barracuda continue to deliver innovative products that are relevant to the market and address customers’ security concerns. Recently, we introduced the revamped Barracuda Cloud-to-Cloud Backup to back up the growing Office 365 data; Barracuda Cloud Application Protection 2.0 for comprehensive web application and API protection; Barracuda CloudGen Access, a zero-trust model for securely managing a remote workforce with instant provisioning of a company or employee-owned devices. All these products are flexible to deploy and operate, minimally invasive to the users, and address customer needs to cope with the growing concern on security and cloud adoption.

7. Any new features that Barracuda Networks is working on?

We have been emphasizing our partners’ success with an intention to help them find new business, expand, and grow and succeed together. To make it possible, we have revamped our partner rewards program whereas our channel team has initiated Barracuda Academy. This new addition to our partner enablement program will involve a series of monthly workshops designed to provide Barracuda partners with tools, training, and resources to successfully sell Barracuda solutions. Besides these, we continue to deliver innovative security products that are easy to buy, deploy and use, and address market needs to help our partners to sell products successfully.