Tampa Bay Tech Leaders: Cybersecurity, Compliance, and A New Partnership With Tech Data

Cybersecurity and everything it entails can get super complicated, super fast. Thankfully, we have great minds like Michael Ferris at Abacode to help us navigate that massively complex web! - Full Stack Talent

Roxanne Williams: Abacode is hot in the news right now due to the announcement of their partnership with Tech Data. For folks who haven’t heard about it yet, can you give us the 30,000-foot overview of the partnership? What will it accomplish?

Michael Ferris: Tech Data is a global company that provides products and solutions to partners. We’re one of the global partners in that value chain. They, along with us, have identified that the world is becoming more regulated when it comes to cybersecurity. There’s a regulation in Europe called GDPR that is spilling over into the US. Any company doing business in Europe has to comply. We all understand that this is going to be the de facto of what happens in the US. Because of that, Tech Data wanted to address the issue.

We stood up a Governance, Risk and Compliance practice to address this need, and our partnership with Tech Data is a win for everyone. As a result, we can collaborate with all of their partners and partner clients and say, “If you are in a regulated industry where you must comply to a certain regulation, we have a services practice to help get you there and prepare you for an audit, attestation or certification.” We don’t perform the audit, attestation, or certification, but we act as their liaison to guide and implement the controls necessary to meet their specific regulation.

This is a critical service. Most companies who now find themselves required to meet a compliance standard don’t have the internal resources to be able to implement these protocols and pass the assessment or become certified. Consequently, we fill a very big void, and it’s only escalating. Our partnership with Tech Data is a key component to help get the word out. This includes educating people on what regulations are coming down the pipe and what it means to their business. It’s a long-term relationship and we’re very excited about it.

Roxanne: Have you already gotten traction from the partnership?

Michael: Yes, we’ve already started having calls with their team and partners. And again, it’s a very informative call. It’s about educating the potential client or partner about how long will it take, average costs, and what they/we will need to do to meet this regulation.

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