Iomega got on the map through the Zip drives that over the years became a part of numerous IT environments, but the vendor is working hard to transform itself into more than the "Zip drive company."

On Tuesday, the San Diego-based vendor launched an e-mail security managed service in partnership with Postini, of San Carlos, Calif. Under the arrangement, Iomega is delivering Postini’s security and compliance solutions to the small and midsize market in the United States and abroad through its network of 15,000 partners, which include VARs and distributors.

The hosted service means a recurring revenue stream for channel partners and no-touch, e-mail security solutions for customers. The Postini technology requires no hardware installation at user sites, where it blocks spam, viruses, phishing and other e-mail threats.

"The most important element of this model is that there is always someone watching out for the SMB customer," said Iomega CEO Jonathan Huberman.

Iomega partnered with Postini for the offering after identifying a dire need in the SMB market for e-mail security, he said. "Thirty percent to 60 percent of SMB companies in the U.S. don’t have an active, up-to-date e-mail security application at their site."

By partnering with Iomega, Huberman added, Postini gets a chance to expand its reach into the SMB market and internationally. For the most part, he said, Postini’s business is in the U.S. enterprise market.

Iomega is marketing the Postini technology as the Iomega OfficeScreen Managed Email Security and Spam Defense—Powered by Postini.

Jerry Jalaba, vice president of worldwide channels for Postini, said he expects the partnership with Iomega will be beneficial to all involved, including the channel partners that will make the connection with the end users.

"Iomega’s customers and channel partners will benefit from offering Postini communications security and compliance solutions, and we will benefit from Iomega’s strong worldwide channels and its focus on small and midsize businesses," he said.

Iomega traditionally has sold directly to corporations, though the company also has a channel program. VARs servicing the SMB space, however, typically did not qualify for the program because they could not meet minimum sales requirements.

But that will change through an arrangement with distributor Tech Data, in Clearwater, Fla. Tech Data will offer the service to VARs and integrators as an SKU, much like any other product the distributor carries. VARs and integrators will buy the license from the distributor, and Tech Data will put them in touch with Iomega to establish the hosted connection.

Despite its background in storage and backup, Iomega opted to build its managed services around security applications and remote access because it saw a greater need there, Huberman said. The company already offers managed firewall service and VPN services.

Huberman said Web-based backup and disaster recovery services are also in the cards. Later this year, he said, Iomega will launch remote backup and later follow that with a business continuity service.