Microsoft expands benefits for security partners

Software giant says it will offer higher financial payouts to members of its Security Software Advisor program

Companies that advise customers to purchase Microsoft's new and expanded line of Forefront security software will have extra financial incentives from the vendor through an expansion to the company's security partner program.

Microsoft said Thursday it would offer higher financial payouts to members of its Security Software Advisor (SSA) program. Microsoft's security channel partners can now earn as much as a 30 percent margin by advising companies to buy select products in Microsoft's security portfolio.

Microsoft also has expanded the number of deals that are eligible for financial benefits from the vendor, the company said.

More information about the expansion to Microsoft's SSA program, which was launched in July, can be found at this Web site. There are about 1,700 partners currently in the program.

Microsoft has recently expanded its line of enterprise security products, which is a fairly new business for the software vendor. Companies that are trying to build their customer bases in a market where they have not traditionally played typically use partners that have more experience selling into that market.

Some of the products included under the SSA program are Internet Security and Acceleration (ISA) Server, Forefront Security for Exchange Server and Forefront Security for SharePoint.

Microsoft launched Forefront Security for Exchange Server and Forefront Security for SharePoint earlier this month; those products are aimed at protected Microsoft's messaging and collaboration products against malware, spam, inappropriate content and unwanted files. Last month, Microsoft released a public beta of Forefront Client Security, an antivirus protection product for laptops and server OSes.

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