Information and Data Security Spending Solidifies

After experiencing its first quarterly loss in over four years earlier in 2008, the network security appliance and software market rebounded last quarter, said Infonetics Research in a recent report.

"Most network security vendors noted good growth in North America, and good pipelines for the rest of the year,? said Jeff Wilson principal analyst for network security at Infonetics Research in a statement. Wilson?s report, "Network Security Appliances and Software," demonstrated that worldwide network security spending was up $1.4 billion, a 6 percent gain over first quarter numbers. Each worldwide region except Central and Latin America saw gains, including North America, which bumped up by 9 percent.

Wilson postulated that the up-and-down nature of security spending this year has to do with the struggle between a soft economy and the jump in attack volume enterprises have faced in 2008.

?Though the economy is still depressed overall, staggering increases in attack volume have forced companies to continue making new investments in security," Wilson said.

According to data released by the volunteer-based Shadowserver Foundation, botnet infections quadrupled over the last three months.
Infonetics findings jibe well with results released last week by Forrester Research that found that 96 percent of IT security professionals expect their budgets to increase or stay the same in 2009. The survey found that approximately 21 percent of security decision makers at enterprises and SMBs expected to increase their security spend in 2009.

Security may be the only IT subsector that most organizations will leave untouched by the budgeters? red pens?according to a survey conducted by ChangeWaveResearch (also released in late August) who reported that 29 percent of enterprises will cut IT spending in the fourth quarter of this year. Even more disconcerting, 39 percent predicted that they would not increase IT spending levels until second quarter of 2009 or later.

?The brief period of stabilizing we picked up in May has given way to another major leg downward," ChangeWave director of research Paul Carton said in a statement. "In fact, you have to go way back to the middle of the last recession to find a ChangeWave survey projecting this big of an IT spending downturn."

As a result of these cuts and continued security spending, the chunk of spending that security makes up within overall IT operating budgets continues to rise. Forrester Research found that the ratio will jump by 2 percent this year to a total of 10 percent.

While network security remains a focus, Forrester found that even more concern was directed to IP and data protection, which survey respondents listed as their top priority in the next year.

The rising number of data breaches and public outcry over skyrocketing incidents of resultant identity theft has made an impact on enterprise spending plans. According to the Identity Theft Resource Center, which tracks data breaches reported in the news, by late August the number of public breaches in 2008 exceeded the number of breaches reported in all of 2007.