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Infrascale Doubles Down on Ransomware Focus

Infrascale, a cloud backup and disaster recovery solution provider that recently relaunched its partner program with a strong emphasis on ransomware, on Thursday unveiled a new ransomware program intended to help partners educate and protect their clients.

"Partners need to be equipped with the knowledge to educate their clients about the pervasiveness of the threat and the characteristics that make one company more vulnerable than the next. Just as important, they must also be equipped with the right technology to detect, combat and mitigate against ransomware to quickly restore encrypted data and systems," said Infrascale's new channel chief Chris Sterbenc in a statement.

El Segundo, Calif.-based Infrascale calls its new effort the Ransomware Antidote Program. Educational tools include an online quiz, e-books, presentations and guidance documentation. Technological tools include a feature called Anomaly Detection, which notifies partners and their clients when the count of new or changed files passes a user-defined benchmark -- such as happens when encrypting ransomware infects a system and starts resaving all the files as encrypted documents that the user would have to pay a cryptocurrency ransom to decrypt.

Other parts of Infrascale's suggested ransomware approach, similar to that taken by many other cloud backup and disaster recovery vendors, involve having solid cloud backup tools available. In Infrascale's case, its products include Infrascale Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS) and Infrascale Cloud Backup. The DRaaS offering allows partners to boot virtual machines from a local appliance or a public/private cloud to recover ransomware encrypted files right away. Infrascale positions the cloud backup offering as helping protect endpoints like laptops, desktops and mobile devices that are likely to be the first systems affected in a ransomware attack.

The ransomware program comes a little over a month after Infrascale rebooted its partner program around a three-legged market focus of protecting organizations from downtime, ransomware and data loss.

Infrascale has a substantial base of about 900 partners, but it had a flat partner program, which was strained by the company's acquisition in 2014 of Eversync Solutions Inc., which focused on customers with higher-volume data requirements than the SMB customers served by most of Infrascale's partners.

The October partner program relaunch created a three-tier structure with Registered, Preferred and Elite partners.

"With the introduction of the disaster recovery product and the growth that the ransomware is driving, it made some sense to stratify it out," Sterbenc said in an interview.

The ransomware program is also emblematic of Infrascale's current inclination to spend money on channel partners through market development funds (MDF), spiffs, referral rewards, deal support and other means. "We've got a really simple process for these guys. It's not one of those super-convoluted programs with point accruals. Unless it's something really stupid, we'll approve it," Sterbenc said. "Our ROI on MDF is crazy good. We literally can't spend enough of it."

Posted by Scott Bekker on November 17, 2016 at 1:20 PM