Cloud security

Jay Chaudhry tells how his company offers a unique approach to cloud security
Jay Chaudhry, serial entrepreneur and CEO of Zscaler.
Jay Chaudhry, serial entrepreneur and CEO of Zscaler.


Jay Chaudhry, CEO of Zscaler, tells CommsMEA how his company offers a unique approach to cloud security.

CommsMEA Tell me about Zscaler?

I started this company in 2007, a time the industry expected cloud computing to happen. We realised that security should be cloud-based as well. So I had developed lots of security appliances before in my previous start-ups, and most of the companies I started were box companies, appliance companies. But I compared appliances to power generators that we used to buy for our home years ago when there was no running electricity. I thought these boxes are like power generators. If you can get services from the cloud securely with the proper policy control, why would anyone buy boxes?

CommsMEA So how does Zscaler fit in to the security equasion?

It is very hard to keep buying and deploying ‘pointy’ products, so our ultimate goal was to eliminate the need for them. Our reasoning was that if we are your check-post, why don’t we do everything in one place rather than multiple places. It is like if you go to the airport and have the first check for your tickets, the second for passport, and the third for customs etcetera. It slows things down, so we actually consolidated all the point products. We are like five start-ups in one and doing all the comprehensive check-posts between the user and internet.

CommsMEA So you developed the company to offer a more comprehensive security solution?

I started this cloud-based company to say let’s build our security around the internet, so we sit between the user and the internet. We act like a check-post to make sure nothing bad comes in and nothing good comes out. That was the dream, the mission. If you look at security companies, you put them in a few buckets: you need to protect your servers, then you need traditional firewall appliances to take care of that. Then you need to protect the users. First of all people started out protecting users by putting anti-virus, but anti-virus does not work because signatures are always out of date as the bad guys keep moving things fast.

CommsMEA How is the business model when you work with operators?

In the Middle East, operators are our go-to-market partner. They leverage our technology and they also know the country-level requirements and regulations. They also have customers, so clearly we are enabling them to have the local cloud in each of these countries. They can have a cloud powered by Zscaler and they market and support their customers. Zscaler provides the cloud and the security, but it is locally deployed and locally managed. Countries in the Middle East really require that traffic termination inspection must happen in-country, data must stay in-country, so our architecture is designed to be able to do that also.

Editor's Choice

The robots are coming: Impact of AI on executive search
As the technology industry’s elite struggle to agree on the potential impact of AI and a raft of people queuing up to advise on the potential disruption it will cause, this article by John Curtis-Oliver, Partner at Boyden studies the potential impact on the executive hiring and the executive search industry.
Saudi Football changes pitch from MBC to STC
The news comes just a few days after the release of Saudi businessman Waleed al-Ibrahim, who has management control of MBC. Reuters reports senior Saudi officials saying that Ibrahim agreed to an “undisclosed settlement after admitting to unspecified violations”.
CEO hiring: The outsider effect
Outsider CEOs were found to be better suited than insider CEOs according to a KWR study that compared the performance of ‘insider’ and ‘outsider’ chief executive officers in the mobile telecoms operator (telco) sector of emerging markets (EMs) in the Middle East and Africa (MEA), and Asia-Pacific (APAC).

Most popular

Don't Miss a Story

You may also like

Mobile penetration reaches 70% in least developed countries of the world
Digital skills gap identified as a key barrier to ICT and internet use in LDCs
New model proposes device to device networks for improved mobile services
D2D technology works similarly to personal hotspots shared between individuals
Bahrain leads the Arab world in ICT development index
However, substantial digital divides continue to exist between regions and countries
A billion 5G subscriptions by 2023: Ericsson Mobility Report
UAE telcos commit to have 5G infrastructure by 2020