IDC sees bright future for IT security services

The results of a new study from research firm IDC gives a strong thumbs up to the fast-evolving information security services sector, predicting that the market for such services will increase to more than US$23.5 billion in the next four years.

The study, "Worldwide and U.S. Information Security Forecast 2003 - 2007," provides a five year forecast for the information security services market, which includes a wide range of activities, from application testing to training and outsourced security strategy planning, IDC said in a statement.

Demand for stronger application security and security for wireless networks will drive the growth of the information security services market, as will the continuing trend toward outsourcing network security functions such as application security testing, disaster recovery and management of network security devices, according to IDC.

IDC predicted more than 20 percent annual growth in spending for information security services, as enterprises look to security services companies to help them understand security risks and develop comprehensive plans to address those risks.

The competitive field for information security services has swelled in recent years, as traditional players such as Internet Security Systems Inc. and BearingPoint Inc. (formerly KPMG Consulting Inc.) have found themselves competing for security consulting and management business against traditionally product-oriented companies such as Symantec Corp.

Companies operating in the information security services space will have to put more effort into differentiating the value of their services from those of their competitors in order to win business, IDC said.

(IDC is owned by International Data Group Inc., which also owns IDG News Service.)

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