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Ctera teams with Varonis on new file monitoring, controls

Varonis adds another storage provider to its growing list of partners, and Ctera offers increased protection and controls for users via a new partnership.

Cloud storage vendor Ctera will keep its clients' files protected and locked down through a new partnership with data security specialist Varonis Systems.

The Ctera Enterprise File Services Platform will feature integration with the Varonis Data Security Platform to "add an enhanced level of visibility and control for enterprise users" according to Jim Crook, senior director of marketing at Ctera.

The integration is undergoing testing with a handful of clients but will roll into general availability in July.

"One of the key differentiations for Ctera was our focus on security," Crook said. "We were built from the ground up to provide a full, secure cloud platform … We're adding all this Varonis integration into what was already a very strong and very secure structure."

The Varonis integration will offer many of the benefits in the company's own standalone product. Administrators can use visualization tools to see what files users are accessing -- particularly those with sensitive or regulated information -- and from where the files are being accessed, along with full audits of files on-prem or in the cloud.

Data is protected according to industry-relevant standards, such as HIPPA or GDPR. Administrators can also get valuable feedback from Varonis, with detection of exposed files and inactive user accounts through a given Ctera permission structure.

Ctera's Enterprise File Services Platform allows enterprises to move previously on-premises and legacy data storage into a variety of environments, including public, private and hybrid clouds. Ctera claims the security provided by Varonis specifically helps protect enterprises against accidently lax security protocols from edge users, leading to potential gaps for ransomware or other malware.

"The Varonis solution is very complimentary with what we provide," said Liran Eshel, CEO of Ctera. "It allows you to make a security decision based upon file traffic … The integration is very simple. We can collect all that data from all those sites and give you them in one place."

Ctera's Enterprise File Services Platform allows users to access files through a "global file system," which caches frequently accessed files and sends less-used data to public cloud storage. The platform works with all major public clouds and can operate within private clouds, as well.

Ctera is also available through partnerships with storage gateway appliance vendors such as Dell, HPE, and IBM. The company's competitors include Nasuni, Panzura and Netapp.

What Varonis brings to the table is a higher level of data management.
Steve McDowellSenior technology analyst, Moor Insights & Strategy

Steve McDowell, a senior technology analyst at Moor Insights & Strategy, called the partnership a positive as both are long-standing, stable companies in their respective fields of storage and security.

"What Varonis brings to the table is a higher level of data management," he said.

The additional security protections offered by Varonis can let Ctera better position itself as an all-encompassing edge-to-cloud service.

"They can take a broader look," he said. "It allows enterprises to find holes and protect against potential liabilities."

McDowell said the partnership most likely will benefit Varonis the most, which faces a more crowded and competitive field in the security sector.

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