CEO Series – Alert Logic CEO Gray Hall “Security is Key to the Growth of the Cloud”


Alert Logic CEO Gray Hall shares that as we are entering a state of phenomenal cloud growth, an era of critical security has emerged as we are also facing an era of more critical apps. Cloud computing is increasingly considered quite simply as compute capacity, and it is a long time coming. Hall has been very vocal in stating that Security is Key to the Growth of the Cloud. The industries of cloud, hosting and security, have the opportunity to provide better IT security solutions in the cloud than enterprises can implement inside their own data centers. This part of Hall’s message speaks to the business models in security that does not necessarily address the cloud. This was part of his keynote at the 2012 Hosting and Cloud Transformation Summit earlier this year.

In a conversation with Hall, he shared a lot of the ideas and the tremendous growth that have happened at Alert Logic. Their revenues are showing tremendous year-over-year growth. The company has more than 1800 customers and partners with more than half of the largest hosting and cloud providers including Rackspace, NaviSite, SunGard, and others. Alert Logic fulfills what they see as the best approach – addressing how businesses use IT in the cloud. The solutions are truly cloud based, not merely SaaS offerings; for example, they are able to operate in an on-demand nature and shared pool scenarios. Let’s take a look at the Cloud Readiness Framework. This model was developed by Alert Logic to ensure optimal integration with Service Provider partners. Below is the technical, operational, and business element framework that illustrates some of the features and how this model is implemented:

Alert Logic also features the first Web Application Firewall that is architected as a Security-as-a-Service solution. The architecture has been built from the ground-up for the cloud. This multi-faction approach to delivering security tools from cloud to cloud is unique.

“You can’t shoehorn classic security into the cloud, it just doesn’t work”

Many other vendors purport to have a cloud-based security solution, but are more focused on taking their on-premise security and placing them into cloud models. Among Alert Logic’s greatest advantages are very open API’s that allow productive and integrated workflows across the service.

Despite only having four major product lines, the demand for those products is great. Alert Logic has tremendous growth potential as the alignment with major cloud providers and an ever-increasing base of customers indicates that they clearly stand apart. To the future, Hall sees that established security players will have to move to SaaS at a minimum and that the largest will be moving very slowly. He would love to see more momentum behind cloud portability as well, and Alert Logic has offered to help make that happen. This last year they transitioned an acquisition of ArmorLogic, an enterprise firewall product and integrated this into their own offerings in less than six months. This coming year, Alert Logic will be focused on adding more elements to their native offerings, such as a Scan Watch which will add monitoring and management to the product line. With their API focus, and common user interface across all their products, there appears to be no one else on the market today with such an extensible platform.

Gray Hall is a 20 year industry veteran and joined Alert Logic in 2009. He was a co-founder and president and CEO of VeriCenter, one of the pioneers of managed IT services. VeriCenter enjoyed great success under his leadership, and was eventually sold to SunGard. Hall spent several years in the venture capital industry and formerly led the formation and launch of IBM’s Center for Scalable Computing Solutions. He is also wears the hat of Chairman of the Board of Directors of Mezeo Software, Inc, which is a leading provider of cloud storage software.