Security analytics startup Niara announces integration with HP ArcSight

Targeted at customers who understand sophisticated security, and for whom that security is absolutely essential, Niara goes to market entirely through partners.

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Sriram Ramachandran, Niara’s CEO and co-founder

Sunnyvale CA-based Niara, a two year old startup which has had its security analytics for advanced detection on the market since June, has announced a significant addition to its go-to-market capability through a certified integration with the HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Management solution. Niara also joined the HP Enterprise Security Products Technology Alliance Program (HP ESP TAP).

“We have seen a dramatic shift in cybersecurity because threats have become so sophisticated,” said Sriram Ramachandran, Niara’s CEO and co-founder. “Many of us at Niara came from enterprise infrastructure companies, and based on our background and observations, we decided that the prevention technologies – trying to keep the bad stuff out – wasn’t working. We assume they will get in, and focus on dealing with them on the inside.” Niara’s technology thus focuses on ensuring that attacks are revealed and responded to before they can inflict damage.

“Existing monitoring systems fall into three categories – SIEMS, log management, and network forensics – and they don’t scale adequately for performance and are limited in their analytic capabilities,” Ramachandran said. “In contrast, we use machine learning techniques to detect the threats. We also use machine learning as a force multiplier for security analysts. And we leverage customers’ existing investments in their existing monitoring tools.”

Ramachandran indicated that Niara can help all three categories of monitoring system.

“The two things where we enhance them is with scalability, and bringing machine learning and next generation analytics in,” he said. “Network forensics is a huge differentiation for Niara. There are many companies in it, but most simply ingest log information from other systems. We do that too, but we also tie it to the network infrastructure, to create a much richer picture of what’s happening on your network.”

With the HP integration, Niara can deliver results from its analytics and forensics modules to HP ArcSight ESM, allowing information to be shared bi-directionally to combat attacks more efficiently.

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Chris Peterson, Niara’s Vice President, Worldwide Sales

“The very tight relationship we have with HP in their Technology Alliance Program has given a very good integration between us and ArcSight,” said Chris Peterson, Niara’s Vice President, Worldwide Sales, who originally designed the ArcSight channel program in 2006 as their Vice President, Worldwide Channels, long before they were acquired by HP. “It will enhance any customer who owns a SIEM today because of the visibility and functionality improvements. There is a large group of ArcSight customers who are candidates for this visibility and functionality.”

While Niara is well suited for the needs of the largest of customers, it is not exclusive to them.

“Small versus large is only one dimension and is I think the wrong way to look at it,” Ramachandran said. “We are working with the largest of the large companies, but one of our top prospects has 1000 employees. Our message resonates with the Forgotten 5000 companies, as well as those at the top of the pyramid. Ultimately, it comes down to two issues. How strategic is security to the organization, in terms of its being absolutely central. You also need to have a certain level of sophistication. That’s more important than size.”

Although many of their customers are large, Niara sells 100 per cent through partners.

“Primarily, our partners are solution providers who sell security infrastructure products to their customers, and those traditional security partners are where we get the most traction,” Peterson said.

“Niara adds so much value to a customer, that it lets the partner open customers eyes’ to the investment they have already made, and give them more visibility than they have seen before. Partners are the best way to expose customers to this, and we will deliver this through the HP ArcSight partner network worldwide.”

The Niara channel is still being built out.

“We are recruiting partners in the Americas today, with the emphasis being around the partner capabilities,” Peterson said.

OEM deals are also a possibility, but nothing is yet set.

“An OEM with a few companies could be a target, but we are not in any OEM relationships yet,” Peterson added.