Jul/Aug 19 - ChannelVision Magazine

As a company that provides its products and services 100 percent through the channel, WatchGuard works closely with partners to help them give customers simple, intel- ligent and secure Wi-Fi solutions. To better understand the impact of secure Wi-Fi on customers and the channel, we recently did a Q&A ses- sion with a variety of partners and end-user organizations. Here’s what they had to say: Q: As a solutions provider serving the restaurant and bar industry, how has secure Wi-Fi measured as a priority for your customers’ clientele? Cliff Gurdin, owner and director at solution provider Eat IT Drink IT: “For most restaurant guests, reliable and secure Wi-Fi has to be on top of the menu, while restaurant owners need to ensure they are fully PCI com- pliant at all times and able to protect both guest and company data.” Q: How has putting your trust in security technology, delivered through your IT solutions provid- er, enabled your business? Alan Wogan, founder and direc- tor at end customer Homeslice Pizza: “While people come to Home- slice for our pizzas and relaxed, friendly environment, it’s surprising how upset they can get if they can’t get access to a Wi-Fi network, and as a business we can’t afford the risk of a security breach ... It means we have one less thing to worry about and can focus on delivering the ultimate pizza dining experience.” Q: For SMBs, such as your customer Homeslice Pizza, how important is it that they have ac- cess to enterprise-grade security solutions for their Wi-Fi? Gurdin: “Recent events have shown that no company, whatever the size or whatever it does, is secure from potential cyber attacks or security breaches. As well as financial loss, In their Own Words D elivering a trusted wireless environment to employees, customers and partners is critical to protecting them from hackers looking to easily exploit the weak or non-existent security of traditional Wi-Fi networks. However, building these trusted frameworks can be a real challenge for organizations, which is why many turn to MSSPs (managed security service providers) and VARs. Mobile & Wireless Channel partners and their customers discuss the importance of secureWi-Fi By Ryan Orsi companies can’t afford to suffer reputa- tional damage that can impact revenue and expansion for emerging brands.” Q: What did your wireless situation look like before, and what specific challenge(s) prompted your deci- sion to build out the existing net- work with secure Wi-Fi? Rick Baker, corporate relations man- ager for end customer SIFF: “We had semi-adequate coverage for staff usage, and virtually no guest Wi-Fi. That was a unique problem that required a unique solution.” Sarah Wilke, executive director at SIFF: “We just weren’t able to get wire- less coverage in those spaces. For us to transfer films between our locations, we really needed a robust network … In order for us to use point of sale through the wireless network, we needed some- thing that was reliable and, particularly, something that was safe.” Q: As a managed services provider that secures nearly 550 million trans- actions daily across retail and hospitality industries – safeguarding the billions of point of sale (POS) transactions and the systems con- nected to them – how important is secure Wi-Fi to your core business? Dustin McCreight, solution manag- er at MSP NCR: “One of the things that’s 44 Channel Vision | July - August, 2019