Mimecast doubles down on Australian investment as whaling, Office 365 drive customers to cloud security

Strong growth in the Australian operations of cloud-based security vendor Mimecast has validated the company's decision to invest heavily in expanding its local operations and headcount, the company's local country manager has said while reporting strong growth on the back of customer concerns about securing Microsoft's Office 365 productivity suite as well as fighting targeted attacks and 'whaling' fraud.

Mimecast opened its Australian office in in July 2013 to formalise a market presence that had previously been managed by partners, subsequently partnering with Nuix for a large-scale email migration system and opening dual NSW data centres to boost local capacity and response time.

With the number of local channel partners doubling in the last 12 months – and significant customer wins including home designer Porter Davis, book publisher Penguin Random House, fashion store Forever New and healthcare organisation Calvary Health – Mimecast has recently seen “fairly significant growth”, country manager Nicholas Lennon told CSO Australia.

That growth had proved strong enough to support a further strategic investment in the region. Announced in late August, that investment has significantly expanded the Melbourne office and opened a Sydney office; together, the two support a headcount of 40 people – up from just seven employees in 2013.

Some 40 percent of those employees are technical, Lennon said – reflecting the demand for value-added solutions and rapid customer support. This support capability is also being extended to global customers by positioning the Melbourne office as the fourth location in the company's global 'follow-the-sun' customer-service network.

“We've seen significant growth across all regions and all categories,” Lennon said, attributing the interest to customer recognition that cloud-based security tools offer more rapid response to new and changing threats as they morph. “Innovation is critical when it comes to email security,” he said. “The types of attacks that organisations deal with are moving quickly, and what's going to impact people in 6 months' time may not be known now.

We have, for example, seen an increase in attacks that don't have malware but socially engineer communications using LinkedIn or Internet data to impersonate a senior executive.” Such whaling attacks have costed businesses over $US2.3 billion in the last 3 years, according to an FBI report released earlier this year.

Experts blame time-poor and unquestioning employees who often share too much personal information online, providing a cornucopia of information that cybercriminals can use to tailor whaling and phishing attacks that have been frighteningly successful.

Mimecast's anti-whaling tool, Impersonation Protect, has been “heavily adopted” by Australian customers, Lennon said, particularly as they more actively expose their businesses to the cloud by embracing Office 365 and other cloud applications as everyday business platforms. “In the last 12 months we've really seen a move from cyber security to cyber resilience,” Lennon said.

“Customers recognise they may get attacked and owned at some point in time, which really brings the continuity and archiving story into play. These areas are contributing to the growth we've seen globally, and are very strong in the local Australian market.”

With room to spare in its newly expanded Southbank, Melbourne regional headquarters, staff growth is a key priority for Lennon as the company continues working to stay on top of a local market that is likely to be increasingly driven by compliance, security, and business-continuity objectives. With Australian breach notification legislation seemingly inevitable and set to boost expectations around data protection and governance, securing the cloud will be increasingly crucial in the long term.

Gartner recently predicted that the need to prevent data breaches from public clouds will drive 20 percent of organisations to develop data-security governance programs by 2018.

Join the CSO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags whalingwhaling attackMicrosoftMicrosoft Office 365cloud based solutionscloud securitycyber security

More about CSOCustomersFBIForever NewGartnerMicrosoftMimecastNuixRandom House

Show Comments

Featured Whitepapers

Editor's Recommendations

Solution Centres

Stories by David Braue

Latest Videos

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Will your data protection strategy be enough when disaster strikes?

    Speakers: - Paul O’Connor, Engagement leader - Performance Audit Group, Victorian Auditor-General’s Office (VAGO) - Nigel Phair, Managing Director, Centre for Internet Safety - Joshua Stenhouse, Technical Evangelist, Zerto - Anthony Caruana, CSO MC & Moderator

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: The Human Factor - Your people are your biggest security weakness

    ​Speakers: David Lacey, Researcher and former CISO Royal Mail David Turner - Global Risk Management Expert Mark Guntrip - Group Manager, Email Protection, Proofpoint

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Current ransomware defences are failing – but machine learning can drive a more proactive solution

    Speakers • Ty Miller, Director, Threat Intelligence • Mark Gregory, Leader, Network Engineering Research Group, RMIT • Jeff Lanza, Retired FBI Agent (USA) • Andy Solterbeck, VP Asia Pacific, Cylance • David Braue, CSO MC/Moderator What to expect: ​Hear from industry experts on the local and global ransomware threat landscape. Explore a new approach to dealing with ransomware using machine-learning techniques and by thinking about the problem in a fundamentally different way. Apply techniques for gathering insight into ransomware behaviour and find out what elements must go into a truly effective ransomware defence. Get a first-hand look at how ransomware actually works in practice, and how machine-learning techniques can pick up on its activities long before your employees do.

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Get real about metadata to avoid a false sense of security

    Speakers: • Anthony Caruana – CSO MC and moderator • Ian Farquhar, Worldwide Virtual Security Team Lead, Gigamon • John Lindsay, Former CTO, iiNet • Skeeve Stevens, Futurist, Future Sumo • David Vaile - Vice chair of APF, Co-Convenor of the Cyberspace Law And Policy Community, UNSW Law Faculty This webinar covers: - A 101 on metadata - what it is and how to use it - Insight into a typical attack, what happens and what we would find when looking into the metadata - How to collect metadata, use this to detect attacks and get greater insight into how you can use this to protect your organisation - Learn how much raw data and metadata to retain and how long for - Get a reality check on how you're using your metadata and if this is enough to secure your organisation

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them Featuring: • John Baird, Director of Global Technology Production, Deutsche Bank • Samantha Macleod, GM Cyber Security, ME Bank • Sherrod DeGrippo, Director of Emerging Threats, Proofpoint (USA)

    Play Video

More videos

Blog Posts

Market Place