Wednesday, April 22, 2009

RSA Conference 2009: Analysts Sifting Thru the Rubble of the Economy, Address the State of the Security Business

RSA Conference 2009, 4/22/09

In a panel discussion on the "State of the Security Business," several leading industry analysts held forth on what is ahead in 2009 and 2010.

Just as in every other walk of life, the current global economic instability is significantly impacting even savviest of people's ability to see beyond yesterday and today, at least without any degree of confidence.

Nevertheless, there were some take aways:

Panel moderator, Sarah Friar, lead software analyst for Goldman Sachs, led of with some projections: global IT spending down 9%, software spending down 5% and based on a recent CSO survey, security spending down 2%.

"Although the US and Israel have dominated the security market hitherto," John Pescatore, Gartner's lead analyst for Internet security suggested that as we pull out of this slide in 2010, "there are powerful reasons for increased global competition," and therefore, "growth in the security market is not going to be rflected on NASDAQ."

Chris Christiansen of IDC provided some clarity in the frenzy of hyperbole swirling around "Cloud computing," he encouraged people to think of the "Cloud" as infrastructure, and SaaS as applications.

Nick Selby of 451 Group remarked that "people are under seige in large organizations," and that he was "starting to see collaboration in independent groups that would never have collaborated even a few years ago." For example, Selby added, as malware is increasingly targeting specific industries, "nanks and pharma are looking proactively at attacks, before they are hit."

-- Richard Power