The market for security software made a strong showing in 2008, jumping nearly 20 percent to $13.5 billion, according to Gartner.
The figure represents a roughly $2 billion increase for the market over 2007. Of particular note was an increase in demand for appliance-based products within e-mail security and secure Web gateway segments of the market, the analyst firm stated.
"In 2008, the security market did not show any noticeable impact from the economic downturn," said Ruggero Contu, principal research analyst at Gartner, in a statement. "A double-digit growth in a challenging economic climate shows that security remains a key priority for CIOs and IT security leaders."
The top five vendors - Symantec, McAfee, Trend Micro, IBMand EMC- will sound familiar to many. Their collective market share, however, is falling - underscoring the idea that new players and specialist vendors can challenge established leaders in the market, the analyst firm stated.
Symantec continued to be the market leader, accounting for 22 percent of worldwide security software revenues in 2008. That number, however, was down about 2.4 percent from 2007. McAfee experienced the strongest growth rate among the top five vendors, with its revenue jumping 20.5 percent in 2008.
According to Gartner, the segments in the appliance-based products that recorded the fastest growth in 2008 were: security information and event management (SIEM), e-mail security boundary and secure Web gateway appliance with 50 percent, 37.7 percent and 29.9 percent increases, respectively.
Web access management (WAM) and endpoint protection platform (EPP) were the slowest performing segments, due to the maturity of the technology, the firm said. Gartner expects the market to continue to grow in 2009, but at a much smaller rate of about 9 percent.
"During times of economic uncertainty and budget restrictions, IT security leaders increasingly need to show business value and cost-effectiveness for security measures, and this has impacted and slowed sales cycles," Contu continued. "However, new product delivery methods, such as software as a service and host-based offerings, and expected increasing interest from the small and midsize business sector will sustain growth in the market in 2009."