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The secrets of making money out of Security

01 May 2007

A couple of years ago security was the hot topic yet research carried out by IDC – the Forecast For Management Survey -  showed that security had dropped out of the list of top-of-mind concerns for New Zealand CIOs in 2006. Jenna Griffin, IDC market analyst, says this isn’t an indication that security is less of an issue; rather, it’s more reflective that security is increasingly becoming a commoditised area of the overall IT landscape. “While commoditisation is having an effect on security as a top-of-mind concern, this doesn’t lessen the impact security and security concerns have on other aspects of the market – such as development and sale of hardware,” she says. Traditionally security would typically mean bundling the existing hardware with software to provide a secure IT environment, says Griffin.“Trends that we see today, however, show that strategies are far more invasive as they now include all aspects of the organisation. Security is beginning to exert influence over an organisation’s IT spending at a more strategic level.”Griffin says the trend towards managed security services (MSS) will continue for the next three years as organisations become more accepting of remote management and complexity skyrockets.“IDC expects MSS will become a primary means of protecting an organisation’s security needs, particularly as this relates to data centres, business continuity and disaster recovery. This use of MSS enables end users to focus more on their core competencies.”Griffin also highlights identity management as another driving force as well as physical security, which she says is adding an additional dimension to the traditional concept of IT security.“In many respects, the security market has come full circle with the increased focus on physical security being reminiscent of the early days of the IT sector, when physically securing the hardware was tantamount to a secure organisation.”As opposed to hardware being the crux of the security world, organisations are finding that this only makes up part of the solution, she says. “The early stages of the security procurement process have far greater influence over the hardware that is purchased. An increase in security assessments and the development of security strategies and road maps have seen a rise in the influence that service providers – particularly security consultants – have in the deployment of hardware.”Outside of the enterprise space, Griffin says there is significant opportunity in the SME and consumer space as increased adoption of IT within the SME market will translate into a greater need for security. “One thing remains certain; threats in the IT space will never cease and hardware will need to continue to adapt in order to complement other security products in providing an overall secure computing environment.”

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