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An Interview with ZeroFox’s Newest Channel Directors: Brian Cannon and Maria Lanzellotti

3 minute read

In March, ZeroFox made a historic pivot to becoming a partner-first organization, the first of its kind for our security category, and a commitment to deliver all future business opportunities through our channel partners. This decision has helped ZeroFox provide its external cybersecurity and threat intelligence solutions to more markets and a broader range of enterprises that rely on the managed service providers and advisors that know their organization’s comprehensive security challenges needs inside and out. 

Our global ecosystem of MSSPs, resellers, distributors and technology partners continues to grow. We’ve expanded our partnerships team to provide richer, strategic services for our channel partners to better capture the external cybersecurity market, customize solutions to their customers’ needs and extend the groundbreaking capabilities that have made ZeroFox a leader. We sat down with Brian Cannon and Maria Lanzelotti, two of our newest Channel Directors leading that charge to learn more about what drives them.

Meet Brian Cannon, Americas Channel Director

First, we met with Brian Cannon, our new Channel Director in the Americas, an industry vet with previous tenure at McAfee, RSA, and Kaspersky. 

Brian, you served six years in the Marine Corps Reserves. How did that experience help guide your current approach to partnerships?

Brian Cannon: Partnerships is a strategic business but also relies on understanding expectations, developing a plan to accomplish them and following through consistently. Our success is our partners’ success and our customers’ success. Each partner has a unique understanding of market needs. ZeroFox can continue to excel by gathering intelligence and transforming it into solutions that will deliver impact.

What attracted you to ZeroFox?

BC: ZeroFox has positioned itself as an ideal vendor for both large and developing channel partners, focusing on white-glove enablement and significant investments in both marketing and a talented channel engineering team. I’m excited to deepen our existing relationships here in the US and Canada and help tap into new partnerships that can make ZeroFox a go-to resource for digital risk protection, threat intelligence and corporate security.

What do you think partners are looking for as we head into 2022?

BC: Interaction. Partnerships is a relationship-building sport, and while we’ve kept our momentum with Zoom, emails, phone calls, texts, Slacks, Signals (etc.… etc.…), nothing beats a face-to-face conversation when the conditions are safe and healthy for everyone involved. I’ve been thrilled to meet more and more of my colleagues at in-person events, onsite visits, happy hours and lunches. All of this, though, serves the higher goal of better understanding their customers’ needs, finding the overlapping opportunities and enabling them to provide the solutions they need.

Last Question. You are a Dallas Cowboys fan. ZeroFox is a Ravens household, but we’ll give you a pass.  Have you ever met Michael Irvin? 

BC: Yes. He got a flat tire, and I gave him a lift to the airport. 

Meet Maria Lanzellotti, Europe Channel Director

Across the pond in Europe, external cybersecurity and threat intelligence solutions are one of the fastest-growing demands. Maria Lanzellotti, our new Channel Director in Europe, is a seasoned channel leader for threat intelligence providers and has had previous posts at Tenable, NetApp, and IBM.

Maria, how has the European market for digital risk protection and threat intelligence solutions changed in the past five years?

Maria Lanzellotti: Europe has always been a leader on cybersecurity issues from a government perspective. The EU was one of the first globally to recognize the importance of personal privacy and the fragility of data both within networks and on the public attack surface. Many enterprises are moving from a reactive cybersecurity posture protecting internal data to a proactive posture reducing external risk. Financial service institutions have had the funding and direction to deliver on this, but now we see many well-known brands following suit.

How has the channel supported this rapid growth in demand for external cybersecurity?

ML: Europe is very diverse in terms of language, business culture, buying cycles, and availability of cybersecurity expertise. Channel partners help their customers craft specific security requirements based on threat trends, help them package the right solutions based on budget, and often help them fill expertise gaps with managed services. They help accelerate mature security organizations and help facilitate growth for developing organizations.

What is your approach to enabling these kinds of partners with a formative impact on demand and needs?

ML: Just like they’re trusted advisors to their customers, we need to be trusted advisors to them. With so many vendors – and an increasing number of lenses to see external cybersecurity through – we need to ensure our partners are empowered and educated to understand their customers’ problems thoroughly and know if ZeroFox’s solutions are the right fit. We achieve this through constant engagement, consistent listening, and frequent education for their entire staff.

Last question. You’re a theatre fan and advocate for community theatre… what’s been your most exciting moment on stage?

ML: I was once in a London production of Chiave per Due (Key for Two). Our director quit just a few days before opening night where high-profile officials from the Italian Embassy and journalists were attending. But the show must go on! We had a successful performance (even if the front row overheard a few curse words from backstage).

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