Most of us access multiple applications and data every day in our personal lives: from online shopping, to making banking transactions, and accessing health services virtually. As a result, the majority would have encountered Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) in some form. Moreover, in our professional lives, it is likely that MFA would be used as the cornerstone across most enterprise cyber security policies.

As you may already know, and recognize, Cisco Duo as a leader of MFA. However, MFA alone is not enough to prevent bad actors from gaining access to important applications and valuable data by impersonating individuals. This has become increasingly critical as 80% of hacking breaches involve either brute force, or the use of lost or stolen credentials, according to the 2022 Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report. To that end, a Zero Trust architecture will become increasingly critical to maintain a robust cybersecurity posture amid an increasingly complex cyber threat landscape.

This is where Cisco Duo comes in, with its offering of a greater measure of control than MFA.

In line with our recent partner webinar titled “Maximize your Profitability with Cisco Duo,” I would like to share some thoughts on how Cisco partners and customers can embark on the Zero Trust journey with Cisco Duo.

Never Trust, Always Verify

MFA serves as a core element of Zero Trust, a security model that establishes trust through continuous authentication and monitoring of each network access attempt. Essentially, organizations should treat every access attempt as if it originates from an untrusted network, such that access is only granted when trust has been established. According to Grandview Research, the global Zero Trust security market size was valued at USD 19.8 billion in 2020, and is expected to register a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15.2% from 2021 to 2028.

Cisco Duo works by verifying the user first, followed by the device. It offers organizations the means to enforce different policies and enact different layers of protection based on the user identity and their location.

As the leading MFA solution, Cisco Duo can be deployed organization-wide for all applications regardless of the environment or operating system. This is incredibly useful in today’s hybrid work environment, with employees working across a large number of applications and networks. Duo acts as a security thread that ties all data and operations together. Notably, it integrates with major enterprise cloud app providers, including Microsoft Office 365, Google Apps, Box and Salesforce.

In addition, Duo easily protects data in the cloud and on-premises, offering businesses peace of mind when accessing critical data. It also covers users that are part of the organization’s wider ecosystem, including contractors who are not in the the active directory.

Businesses and customers alike are reaping the benefits of Duo

Duo is easy to use and manage. Businesses are already experiencing this, having deployed Duo in a matter of minutes, not days, minimizing downtime and optimizing productivity. This is why Duo continuously achieves the highest Net Promoter Score – a guide that measures the likelihood of the customer recommending Duo to a friend.

At Cisco, we are working with the University of Queensland, which has implemented Duo as a Zero Trust security control to protect its sprawling network of people, systems and intellectual assets. Duo’s enrollment and authentication processes made it easy for even the most tech-averse users to get up and running with MFA, and it is also easy for the University to integrate it from the backend. The Duo rollout to full-time staff has been so successful that the University of Queensland plans to expand its deployment to part-time staff and eventually to students.

Achieving better security outcomes with Zero Trust

Duo serves as a gateway for organizations to implement Zero Trust holistically.

When customers are happy with Duo, we find they are more likely to continue to discuss other Zero Trust components and Duo can work with various applications as you see in the diagram below.

Secure Any Corporate Application


Our objective is two-pronged: first, to deliver better security outcomes for customers and enable them to evaluate their security infrastructure as a whole.

Second, we aim to enable Cisco’s partners to be more profitable and successful when selling our security portfolio. To this end, we are working towards ramping up the adoption rate of Duo in the APJC market which will in turn, present greater opportunities for our partners to diversify their product offerings and drive awareness and adoption among customers in this space.

Across the board, we have seen partners increase their available wallet share and boost their profitability through several pathways. This includes adding Duo into their SaaS portfolio and capitalizing on greater service opportunities through integration into customers’ existing application stacks. We recently announced a new offer – Step Up, to increase the profitability of our partners when selling Duo. Connect with your Cisco contacts to learn more!

In addition to the Step Up offer, a fantastic route to market for Duo is as a Managed Service. Duo has a great offer here with the Duo Managed Service Providers (MSP) Program which supports partners with the provision of curated security solutions for MSP that are scalable and easy to set up.

Finally partners can maximize their benefits with Not for Resale (NFR) Incentive Duo licensing at zero cost for internal use, demo and evaluation usage.

Not for Resale Duo Licensing


Towards a secure and resilient future

As workforces, operation models and IT systems become more hybrid and distributed, and the world becomes more and more interconnected, ensuring security resilience will be paramount for the survival and success of businesses.

Learn more about the full capability of Duo by tuning into the replay of our Partner Webinar: Maximize your Profitability with Cisco Duo, where we discussed ways to drive better security outcomes for your customers and, in the process, build revenue streams for your own organization.

Remember, Cisco Duo is far more than MFA; it’s a control point that encompasses the user and policy verification. It’s only with this understanding that you can leverage the full suite of capabilities Duo offers for not just the customer’s benefit but the profitability of your business as well.

So connect with your Cisco Duo contact today and happy selling.


Replay Partner Webinar: Maximize your Profitability with Cisco Duo



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Simon Islin

Regional Manager, Cybersecurity Channels

Security Sales APJC