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Inside Symantec Community Blog

Hello ISPs, are you listening?

Created: 10 Sep 2012
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Hello ISPs, are you listening?

Christos Ventouris, CISA, CISM, CISSP, and Technology Manager for Symantec, wants his ISP to provide the same security for the devices he uses at home as the ones he uses at work. It’s BYOD in reverse.

My life is governed by Internet enabled devices. I have two laptops, one tablet, one desktop, a smartphone and two recently acquired Internet connected TVs. These seven devices dominate my day—whether it’s for work or entertainment.

Then there are the devices my family uses: two laptops for the children, plus a smartphone and a tablet for my wife. That number is set to grow as more devices dominate the Ventouris household. Still, working for Symantec has its advantages, as it means I can work on the Web without worry, knowing the Symantec network has the appropriate security measures to safeguard my data. However, when I’m at home, I jump into CISO mode: checking the home network is secure, our data is safe and our devices are free from malware. 

But wait. I am just a typical family man who wants to work and play on the net without having to worry about data protection or Internet security. I don’t have the time to back up more than two terabytes of data, protect my kids from accessing inappropriate content, secure my wife’s access to her favourite e-shops, or manage my bandwidth so I can watch the latest streamed moves. Maybe I need an in-house IT guy?

I blame the ISP provider. Maybe I’m spending too much on my ISP for a telephone I rarely use and a plain cable DSL Internet access. So I went online to check out alternative ISPs that could offer me that little bit more than I’m paying for right now. My blood was beginning to boil by this point. The ISP competitive offerings were much the same as I’m getting now, give or take a few Euros. How on earth, I wondered, do these guys still make money, compete and keep their customers?

I am not happy paying just for a landline and an Internet service. I want my ISP to provide services to my family the same way Symantec provides me with services when I am using its network. If you’re reading this Mr ISP, here’s my shopping list: back up my data on my ISP’s cloud, protect our email from spam and viruses, block inappropriate content from my kids’ laptops, deliver the necessary bandwidth to watch my favourite TV show, and safeguard my Internet transactions from fraud. It’s not much to ask, is it? Just give me a dashboard view of the services so I can check everything is OK. Indeed, I’ll pay a premium to get it. After all, it will save me at least five hours every week buried on a laptop screen, fixing issues, backing up data and troubleshooting. That is almost a day every month.

So come on you ISPs. There are technologies available right now that will let you build enterprise-class services tailored for millions of families like the Ventouris household. In fact, it’s one of the few differentiating strategies left—an innovative way of distinguishing your services and preventing the steady stream of customers crawling to your competitors.

Think of it as BYOD in reverse. With BYOD, we want bring our personal gadgets to work. I want the opposite: to enjoy the same security and protection at home as I do at work. That’s not much to ask is it?