Vordel working with Dell, Amazon to secure biz cloud

25 Mar 2010

Irish cloud security player Vordel is working with Dell to manufacture cloud security products and is on the verge of an alliance with online marketplace Amazon.com to create cloud security services for businesses.

Dublin-headquartered Vordel, which has offices in the States and origins in XML and SOA governance products, has in the past year added 32 customers to its growing enterprise client base.

Its customers include finance firms like EBS, Allianz and BNP Paribas, as well as government customers like the US Federal Government and the EU Council, as well as prominent telecoms providers like Telefonica and Telecom Italia.

Vordel’s Hugh Carroll explained to Siliconrepublic.com that the company has a relationship with Dell’s Industrial Solutions Group to manufacture Vordel Cloud Security Broker boxes that the company can then sell to financial institutions, telecoms providers and businesses in general.

“Businesses have been dipping their toe in the cloud in a low-risk way by using Google mail services and Amazon S3 storage,” Carroll explained. “But now organisations are thinking how they can best leverage the business model in a cost-effective way. They are creating new internal services and merging these with cloud services. We see our technology being used to secure future utility services and media services like IPTV.

“Vordel’s model to date has been focused on the enterprise market and the route to market is direct. We have offices in LA, Washington, the UK and France. We also have a direct route to market through major partners.”

Carroll explained that the company is profitable and has been growing at a sustained pace of 15pc a year. “(The year) 2009 was our best year yet.”

The company employs 35 people and plans to grow 30pc in Dublin and overseas. Vordel is backed by venture capitalists DJM Nominees and Elder Street.

“Right now the company’s focus is on growing revenue and profitability and the investors are happy to see that continue.”

He said the time for computing via the cloud has come for the business world. “Our heritage is Services Oriented Architecture (SOA) and the cloud is a natural extension of SOA. The whole concept is around a services-based world and we are positioning ourselves as a broker for businesses.”

Hugh Carroll

Hugh Carroll of Vordel

Vordel emerged as an idea amongst a group of Eircom.net workers in the 1990s. “A couple of smart minds came together,” Carroll explained. “Mark O’Neill, one of the original founders is still CTO and it was his brainchild.”

Speaking with Siliconrepublic.com, O’Neill said that for 51pc of CIOs, security is the biggest challenge when it comes to cloud adoption. “People are worried about their data intermingling with other people’s data and they are particularly concerned that many cloud providers won’t provide a services level agreement (SLA).

“Then there added issues like domain name servers (DNS). This isn’t the fault of cloud providers like Google because they are providing a service that depends on things other than their own infrastructure. The key behind Vordel’s Cloud Services Broker is it brokers servers, monitors and mitigates security problems.

O’Neill said Vordel’s cloud security technology is enabling VoIP users in the States to make 911 calls. “The call goes through the emergency integrator to Vordel’s hardware to validate messages. The requirement is to keep communications private, encrypted and validated.”

He explained that Vordel has forged a manufacturing partnership with Dell’s industrial group to manufacture its hardware and it has also forged a partnership with Amazon to bring the secure cloud to the business world.

“We are the comfort blanket for the CIO when he wants to use the cloud. We are in active conversations with CIOs across the world and partners see Vordel as an intermediary that enables the cloud for the corporate world.”

O’Neill concluded that the company is planning to open a west coast US office in the third quarter.

By John Kennedy

Topmost photo: Vordel CTO Mark O’Neill

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years