MSSP, Content, Security Program Controls/Technologies

Key MSSPs Embrace Palo Alto Networks Cortex Security Platform

At least five major MSSPs (managed security services providers) have embraced Palo Alto Networks' new Cortex platform. Cortex, an artificial intelligence-based continuous security platform, leverages a data lake. The lake enables organizations to store and analyze data that is normalized for advanced AI and machine learning to identify threats and orchestrate responses.

Also, Palo Alto Networks has announced Cortex XDR for threat detection, investigation and response. Cortex XDR leverages network, endpoint and cloud data to uncover cyber threats, automate threat investigations and stop cyberattacks.

MSSPs Embrace Cortex XDR

Key Cortex supporters include such MSSPs as BDOCritical StartON2ITPwC and Trustwave -- although each MSSP may have different use cases for the Palo Alto offering.

For instance, Trustwave, a Top 100 MSSP, now hosts Cortex XDR managed services and has added support for Palo Alto Networks WildFire and Threat Prevention, cloud-based security subscription services for Palo Alto Networks next-generation firewalls.

By contrast, PwC and BDO will launch Cortex XDR offerings that extend threat monitoring, detection and response services to Palo Alto Networks customers.

MSSPs Critical Start and ON2IT also have integrated Cortex XDR into their managed security services. Critical Start uses Cortex XDR data as part of its Zero-Trust Analytics Platform, and ON2IT has incorporated Cortex XDR into its Zero Trust SOC app.

Cortex XDR will be generally available the week of March 4, 2019.

Palo Alto Networks Introduces Traps 6.0

In addition to its Cortex announcement, Palo Alto Networks has unveiled Traps 6.0, a new version of its endpoint protection and response solution.

Traps 6.0 includes a Behavioral Threat Protection engine that stops cyber threats in real-time. It also can be used in combination with Cortex XDR to help organizations detect and response to cyber threats across their entire digital infrastructure with a single agent.

Traps 6.0 is now available to organizations globally.

What Does Cortex, Traps 6.0 Mean for Palo Alto Networks?

The Cortex and Traps 6.0 releases could help Palo Alto Networks accelerate its revenue growth following a profitable second quarter of fiscal year 2019.

Palo Alto Networks recorded total revenue of $711.2 million in 2QFY19, up 30 percent year over year. The company also posted 2QFY19 billings of $852.5 million, which represented a 27 percent year-over-year increase.

Furthermore, Palo Alto Networks in February announced plans to acquire Demisto, a security orchestration, automation and response (SOAR) platform provider, for $560 million. The Demisto acquisition supports Palo Alto Networks' mission to use AI and machine learning to help its customers automate their security operations.

Dan Kobialka

Dan Kobialka is senior contributing editor, MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E. He covers IT security, IT service provider business strategies and partner programs. Dan holds a M.A. in Print and Multimedia Journalism from Emerson College and a B.A. in English from Bridgewater State University. In his free time, Dan enjoys jogging, traveling, playing sports, touring breweries and watching football.