Kaspersky has confirmed that it will commence winding down its hosted security service this month.
In an email to SC Magazine, Kaspersky confirmed its announcement from August 2012 that it was ceasing to sell Kaspersky Hosted Security (KHS), but that all existing customers would be fully supported through to August 2013.
Now it is passing users to partner Spamina after ‘an exhaustive study of the SaaS market'. “Spamina has proven to be extremely successful at providing their customers with industry-leading hosted email and web security services,” it said.
“Having integrated Kaspersky Lab's industry leading engine as a substantial component of our malware detection system, we ensure customers have the same high level of protection they've become accustomed to with KHS. In addition, Spamina offers additional valuable features such as email continuity, automatic email backup, optional webmail access, rules engines, great spam and malware filtering protection, cloud-based architecture, Kaspersky Lab's anti-virus engine as well as a partner console for easily setting trial accounts, activating licenses and manage your contract renewals from a single point console.”
Kaspersky confirmed that it and Spamina had developed a special migration offer for KHS customers, and it had also introduced Managed Service Provider to offer resellers the opportunity to offer Kaspersky's products to their end-users under a managed service, with monthly billing available.
Asked why this decision had been made to end its hosted security service, Kaspersky said: “Kaspersky Lab sees very strong market potential for its endpoint protection suites. We plan to allocate significant resources to the projects that will deliver the highest value to our partners and customers. This means that Kaspersky Lab's flagship B2B endpoint protection suite products will continue to be the main focus of the company's development efforts.
“Kaspersky Lab has maintained our KHS business for two years. The technology we've deployed is excellent and the satisfaction among our customers is high. We've always believed that we should provide our customers with the highest level of service quality while employing a channel strategy that rewards partners with a handsome profit margin.
“After careful analysis, we have come to the conclusion that KHS business model is not sustainable over time and that we have to invest our future efforts into areas where we will continue to build strong business relationships with our valuable channel partners.”
Commenting, Joel Smith, CTO of AppRiver, said that while there is still a market for hosted security, doing cloud was ‘not easy'. He said: “It requires a lot of management and you do not know until you are doing the service.
“I don't run into Spamina in the market, but this is a good revenue component for them, but users will need a service. Email is not security, but it is smart to think of it as one piece. The small-to-medium business will think of it as a piece of security; the small-to-medium enterprise will think of it as one and manage it as one also, they think that the inbox should be managed for them. Larger businesses will own their own email and take care of themselves.
“We see email as being an economy of scale and ramped up with cloud services. If a user does it in the data centre they end up with issues and more costs. If you are a pure play security provider, then it is different from other models. Some users will go with a pure play provider such as Symantec, but like Kaspersky it is not their core service.”
Asked if he felt that email was a declining sector, Smith said it was not as it facilitates work so much, but users do not want to manage it themselves.