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BackBox Reinforces Focus on Network Security Automation with Launch of Managed Service Provider Program and Key Executive Hires

BackBox, a leading provider in network automation, security and management, announced an enhanced focus on solving network security challenges via automation with two key executive hires and the launch of a formal Managed Service Provider (MSP) and Managed Security Services Provider (MSSP) Program. BackBox welcomes Josh Stephens as Chief Strategy Officer and Gautam Shankar as Vice President of MSP Sales.

“This is a culmination of efforts around a product that was engineered by some of the best minds in cybersecurity,” said Andrew Kahl, CEO of BackBox. “Our solution has reached a point where we can scale it for businesses of varying types and sizes to improve network security posture. Josh’s 29 years of experience in cybersecurity, network engineering and cultivating software companies will prove to be critical in the execution of scaling BackBox’s network security automation solution to companies worldwide.”

“MSPs and MSSPs play an important role in our network security automation strategy because smaller companies generally don’t have a dedicated network engineer or access to the talent needed to automate network capabilities. Small and medium businesses (SMBs) have few options when it comes to network security, and therefore outsource network security to MSSPs,” Kahl continued. “This is why I’ve brought Gautam on to lead our efforts to focus on driving value to these markets. One of my top priorities at BackBox is to fuel the growth of our MSP and MSSP programs, thereby bringing our unique network security automation benefits to more companies around the world.”

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Stephens’ nearly three decades of experience encompasses military service as a Network Engineer and Cybersecurity Specialist in the United States Air Force; building highly complex networks for some of the world’s largest banks, airports and major enterprises for International Network Services (INS); and being a member of the founding team at SolarWinds. Stephens has also held senior leadership positions at Idera, Itential, and Elsewhere Partners where he most recently served as CTO. Stephens has expanded his strategic influence as an angel investor and board director in several companies, some of which include Evo Security, (now a part of Google), and ActivTrak.

In his new role at BackBox, Stephens will be focused on product growth, strategy, providing value to managed security providers, forging key technology partnerships and helping to architect a community program to enrich the experience of BackBox customers.

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“It’s hard to look at what’s happening globally and not come to the realization that we are losing the war on cybercrime,” Stephens said. “This is a rallying cry for network security companies around the world to put more emphasis on protecting our networks and continuously improving perimeter security. What’s exciting about BackBox is that it can be used to fuel a culture of continuous network security posture improvement through automation. Network security is a priority for organizations of all sizes, but mid-level companies in particular face the biggest hurdles because internal teams struggle to keep up with patch management, compliance validation and remediation; all in addition to the increasing complexity of modern, multi-cloud network environments. BackBox is unique in that the solution makes light work of keeping networks up-to-date and secure through practical, easy to use automation.”

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Shankar, an experienced cybersecurity and information technology leader, has led partnership programs at companies like Salesforce, Oracle, and RSA. He specializes in helping enterprises with digital transformation, complex enterprise security solutions such as network security, information and data security, identity management, vulnerability management, risk and compliance and endpoint security.

At BackBox, Shankar will focus on building a mutually beneficial MSP/MSSP channel program to bring the benefits of network security automation to more companies, with a particular emphasis on reaching SMBs.

“SMBs face a unique set of challenges when it comes to network security,” said Shankar. “SMBs typically lack the internal expertise and resources needed to protect their networks from the onslaught of cyber threats. My primary objective at BackBox is to help MSPs and MSSPs accelerate their capabilities around network security automation, as they are critical, strategic partners for organizations around the world in strengthening their security posture.”

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