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Business leaders beyond CIOs are becoming concerned about data security: IDC


With focus on the digitalisation, cyber security is getting heightened attention from businesses and governments. In an interview with EC’s Mohd Ujaley, Vivek Gautam, Research Manager, Software & Services, IDC India, says “Increasingly business leaders beyond CIOs are becoming concerned about data security in their organisations.”

What trends did you witness in the enterprise security business space last year?

In 2015, most importantly we saw cyber security getting heightened attention from businesses and governments alike. Increasingly business leaders beyond CIOs became concerned about data security in their organisations. As a fall out we saw security budgets swell. Also enterprises started realizing that having best-of-breed security products doesn’t mean they can’t be breached. Not only they need to continuously monitor threats but also be prepared to swiftly respond to contain the severity and length of attacks.

From products or technology perspective two key trends were noticeable. Firstly security features are increasingly being architected or embedded into products. For Instance Windows 10 has Windows Hello, a biometric technology that uses fingerprint, iris, and face recognition as alternative to passwords. Similarly Cisco announced new offerings with embedded security across the network. Secondly the notion of security as a platform, as against series of point products or devices on network, gained traction.

What’s the outlook for the enterprise security business segment for 2016?

The outlook for overall enterprise security space is quiet healthy. IDC estimates the India security software market will grow at around 12% in 2016. Even faster growth is expected in the security services space. On security appliance side our estimates indicate growth in higher single digits.

In terms of various segments network security, end point security including mobile and Identity & access management are expected to lead market growth. Similarly on services side we are seeing good uptake of managed security services.

From enterprise demands perspective, which verticals are primarily propelling the demand for enterprise security business?

From vertical standpoint, banking & financial services and IT & ITES are key drivers of India IT security market. In addition manufacturing especially pharma, engineering design, government including defense are also contributing to overall demand in good measure.

How have the technology shift such as cloud, mobility, virtualization, BYOD impacted the overall enterprise security business in India and globally?

Adoption of this new style of IT characterised by cloud, mobility, social, analytics etc. have waned the traditional boundaries of organisations. Today we have employees and even business partners accessing corporate data and applications via multiple devices and platforms. With more applications being put on cloud and BYOD trend, IT administrators may not always have full visibility and control of security policies and practices being followed by employees and 3rd party providers. For instance often information or data traffic from mobile workers don’t even cross corporate networks. All this have added to complexity of managing security and in turn pushed market growth higher.

How do you look at the recent European Court of Justice Judgment which termed the data transfer pact between U.S. and Europe invalid? Will it impact the dynamics of the security business in the world?

European court’s judgment is more on data privacy issue and may have ramifications from regulatory perspective. Fundamentally the judgement termed Safe Harbor agreement flawed and upheld EU citizen’s “right to privacy”. As such it may not have any direct imminent impact on security market dynamics. However to comply with the ruling large companies like AWS, IBM, Facebook, Google etc. may not be able to transfer data freely. This will drive the demand for data center space in EU countries and indirectly the demand for datacenter security products & services.

What are the major challenges that enterprise security business face today and how they could be overcome?

Most prominent challenge enterprises face is lack of skilled security professionals. Shortage of qualified personnel puts pressure on IT departments to recruit, train and retain critical staff. So managing an in-house team of security professionals can be costly affair, especially for SME’s with limited financial resources. To overcome this organisations are increasingly relying on managed security services. Such services not only provide access to trained workforce but also are cost effective. Managed Security Service Providers (MSSPs) are able to spread investment in analyst, security software, hardware and facilities across multiple clients, reducing cost per client.

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