Barracuda CEO welcomes government effort to tackle cybercrime

Barracuda CEO Hatem Naguib has welcomed the government’s intervention in trying to stem the tide of cyberattacks, while one MSP talks cybersecurity challenges for public sector.

Posted 11 May 2023 by Christine Horton

Barracuda CEO Hatem Naguib has welcomed the government’s intervention in trying to stem the tide of cyberattacks on businesses and individuals.

As part of these plans, UK technology managed service providers (MSPs) will be treated as critical service providers – such as those that provide water, energy, transport, healthcare and digital infrastructure. This is aimed at protecting essential and digital services against increasingly sophisticated and frequent supply chain attacks.

“It’s interesting. I’m never a big fan of bureaucratic situations,” Naguib told Think Digital Partners at the cybersecurity vendor’s partner conference in Dubrovnik, Croatia (pictured). “But I think we’re overdue to have government involved in helping with what is clearly a situation from a security perspective. When you think about the role of government in helping, there’s no bigger responsibility than helping the UK, EU and the US. We’ve seen them step up now and say, ‘we’re going to have to work together.’”

The CEO said governments are also helping to pursue perpetrators of cybercrime

“Basically, customers are getting mugged in the street. Whose responsibility is that? It’s great to see government stepping up and raising the bar for all of us. This isn’t a one vendor solution; all of us are in this together. Barracuda has been at this for 20 years … we welcome that elevated level of engagement to make sure that everybody’s getting protected.”

Speed of movement a challenge in the public sector

Elsewhere at the event, one top Irish MSP noted that huge challenges the public sector faces around implementing cybersecurity.

James Finglas is managing director at MJ Flood Technology. Parent company MJ Flood is the largest Irish-owned supplier of managed print services, digital technology and security systems in the country.

“It’s a real challenge, because the public sector is constrained by procurement, and it’s constrained by budget – they really are swimming against that against the tide as a sector, while they are probably one of the single biggest targets [for cybercriminals] that there are. And it’s not one that’s easily answered,” he said.

Finglas said cost remains the key consideration for the public sector. “As it should be, as it’s public sector,” he noted. “But distilling that noise and actually get them something that represents value as opposed to cost is a challenge.”

JP Kehoe, VP of Barracuda’s Managed XDR business, added that MSPs don’t just bring products to the table, but “an entire value proposition, support, advice, or guidance – that’s what they do for businesses. I think that gets missing or in direct line into product sales.

“I don’t think the public sector is any different to everyone else, but their speed, and agility to adopt is a challenge. So, we’re all affected equally, but others are able to move faster. That’s one of the key things: speed of movement.”