Integra Telecom has launched new cloud-based security services for SMBs and regional enterprise markets across the United States. The move comes less than one week after Integra named Ken Worcester its first ever channel chief. Integra's long-term goal is to create a cloud-based suite of managed, network security solutions to protect companies from malware.

Worcester said he was in search of cloud partners for Integra when he became channel chief on Sept. 8. Integra's first effort is a cloud firewall service based on Palo Alto Networks' enterprise firewall. In a prepared statement, Integra Telecom Director of Cloud Services Richard Shimizu said this is the first of multiple forthcoming cloud services.

Integra says its cloud security suite efforts will give businesses highly sophisticated data protection and management solutions. Those solutions, in turn, will also be available to channel partners.