The Unified Threat Management (UTM) solutions market has grown recently due to its attractive network security approach and the increased demand for integrated security. Small and medium businesses (SMBs) are satisfied with current UTM solutions, but enterprise and high security organizations will require best-of-breed operability to fulfill their needs. According to Frost & Sullivan, vendors looking to penetrate this market must offer developed products, with commercial grade functionality first and foremost, as penetration into the large enterprise customer markets will be crucial to sustain high growth rates.
"The UTM concept is based on the assumption that a combination of security solutions bundled in the same appliance will create a better security umbrella for organizations," says Ariel Avitan, Frost & Sullivan's Industry Analyst for Network Security Technologies. "Another main advantage of UTM solutions is their low cost in comparison to purchasing many different security solutions. These two advantages are driving the rapid adoption of UTM solutions by SMB customers."
UTM vendors have traditionally targeted SMB and SOHO/ROBO network and these customers will continue to value broader product coverage and cost effective solutions. In 2009, these segments accounted for 53.6 percent of market revenues globally. However, total market revenues are expected to shift towards the enterprise market, as UTM products improve in functionality and reliability.
Typical UTM solutions include a Firewall, IPS/IDS, an AV (Antivirus), an AS (Anti-Spam) component and a VPN. "While the ability to provide higher level security such as AV and AS attracts enterprise customers, the restraint of such solutions lays in their lack of ability to inspect the amount of data going through an enterprise-size network," adds Avitan.
A critical area of improvement for UTM vendors is product performance. While the value proposition of UTM solutions lies in their ability to integrate a wide breadth of security applications, large organizations will continue purchasing best-of-breed security solutions if their security standards are not being met by the UTM solution.
According to Avitan, "The need for high performance security products in the market was the spark that led a number of network security companies to develop solutions to deal with the intensity of enterprise data flow."
One of these solutions is proposed by Wedge Networks, the company behind the BeSecure line of products. Wedge Networks has developed a patented next generation deep content inspection engine called the "SubSonic engine," capable of detecting, flagging, and blocking malware, spam and viruses at very high accuracy rates while screening high volumes of data with very low impact on network performance.
The Wedge BeSecure was tested already and found superior to the leading UTM solutions with an accuracy rate over 98 percent in malware detection and blocking, against some 86 percent for the leading UTM solutions. "These results are no surprise when the leading UTM solutions are based on packet filtering, or shallow application inspection, e.g. web filtering, that do not accurately detect malware embedded in the application layer," says Avitan.
Frost & Sullivan believes that companies with an innovative approach to developing new solutions will increase their market share in the content security market. "They effectively plugged a security hole for organizations who struggle to find solutions that fit their data throughput needs while maintaining high detection accuracy, a fit that is critical for their business continuity and is not met by UTM solutions offered in the market today," concludes Avitan.
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