Untangle Inc., provider of comprehensive network security for SMBs, announced the results for its annual Voice of the Channel and 2021 Predictions Report. The report surveyed Untangle’s global network of Channel Partners to better understand current trends and barriers faced when protecting clients against emerging cybersecurity threats and other customer barriers within the market. 

In a year that saw a majority of organizations transitioning to a remote workforce, cyber attacks were also on the rise. However, while phishing (68%), malware/virus (53%), and ransomware (47%) were among the top 3 types of cyber attacks Channel Partners’ customers were victims of in 2020, compared year-over-year, this is a downward trend seen from last year’s survey; phishing (84%), malware (84%), and ransomware (63%). The survey found that both Channel Partners and their customers are more aware than ever of these types of cyber attacks and, by association, were offered more advanced service portfolios from service providers to combat these threats.

Notably, the survey finds that while Channel Partners previously called out limited budgets as a key issue for supporting their clients, they now predict spending on cybersecurity will significantly increase in 2021. This is likely due to the large growth in customer inquiries following the news of major cyber attacks and data breaches that happened in 2020.

Additional report highlights include:

  • As Channel Partners saw the majority of their clients’ businesses moving to a remote workforce due to COVID-19, 75% of respondents say that the most requested security feature by clients was VPN connectivity.  The next most requested features were Endpoint Security (12%), and then Cloud Migration ( (6%).
  • Remote access technologies, and securing them, will remain prominent as 55% of Channel Partners expect at least 50% of their customers to continue working remotely.
  • 85% of our Channel Partners predict that the cybersecurity part of their business will grow in 2021, further backed up by 69% of Partners reporting an increase in customer inquiries following the news of major cyber attacks throughout 2020.
  • Surveyed Channel Partners believe the 3 biggest cybersecurity threats the channel will experience in 2021 are 1) Employees who do not follow rules (32%), 2) Ransomware (31%), and 3) Phishing (23%). 

“Knowing what types of problems our 1,100+ partners are trying to solve, and what technologies they are looking at for 2021 has a direct impact on Untangle's roadmap plans,” said Scott Devens, CEO at Untangle. “For 2021, we see an increase in the need for easy to use VPN technologies – and a growth of cybersecurity spending due to recent major cyber attacks. .”