Managed Security Services Gain Momentum
By Ericka Chickowski
Traditional security vendors and managed security service providers (MSSP) vied for attention at the Gartner Security Summit. The spate of announcements made at this event should underscore for channel partners the momentum behind security services and cloud deployments in the security niche, which has traditionally held on to on-premise models longer than many other IT fields.
According to figures from Transparency Market Research, the global cloud security market will reach $6 billion by 2016, while a Gartner report forecast that by 2015, 10 percent of all IT security enterprise capabilities will be delivered in the cloud.
Meanwhile, Infonetics Research reported that the managed security market grew 12 percent last year to reach $13 billion. The services growth trend was seen in action at the Gartner Security Summit with some key announcements.
First up to bat was Dell SecureWorks, which announced the Targeted Threat Hunting service, designed to analyze threat intelligence data to find indications that hackers may be lurking in an organization's network. This move puts pressure on other MSSP players to up their threat intelligence offerings in order to deal with heightened levels of the advanced persistent threats (APTs) that are targeting customer environments.
Another announcement was made by IT risk management firm Agiliance, which unveiled its Mobile Trust Service, which offers real-time risk scoring of mobile devices and applications before bring-your-own-device (BYOD) initiatives hit the network. The firm said the offering is designed both for enterprises and for MSSPs looking to supplement their existing mobile security offerings.
"The Agiliance Mobile Trust Service gives MSSPs that are offering MDM [mobile device management] or MAM [mobile application management] services the ability to centralize security risk monitoring, assessment and management," said Torsten George, vice president of worldwide marketing, products and support for Agiliance. "It provides automated assessment and scoring of mobile application and device risks before they connect to the network, and maintains continuous risk monitoring after devices are network-enabled."
Meanwhile, on the identity and access management front, privileged identity vendor Lieberman Software rolled out a version of its Enterprise Random Password Manager (ERPM) in a software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform. The firm calls it the industry's first security-as-a-service privileged identity management platform.
"The additional capabilities and service offerings broaden what our current channel providers and system integrators will be able to offer," said Jess Richter, vice president of strategic alliances for Lieberman Software. He emphasized that the addition of a security-as-a-service offering broadens deployment options for partners with customers that are seeking greater flexibility. "System integrators and managed service providers, including managed security service providers, can offer this as a value-add to their offerings or embed it into their existing solutions."
Richter's comments echo what many vendors in security and IT have stated as their intentions in delivering SaaS and cloud products. While partners have generally been wary of vendors offering delivery mechanisms with the potential of channel conflict given the ability to go direct to customers, most vendors believe the channel will play a role selling these services. A study by Forrester Research of 50 top independent software vendors found that 79 percent believed their channel partner program would play a strategic role in growing SaaS revenue.
Ericka Chickowski, a Channel Insider contributing writer, specializes in technology and the channel.