McAfee Talks Security Strategy with 'Security Connected' Vision

McAfee discussed its security strategy, which the company has dubbed "Security Connected."

McAfee is pushing a new initiative it calls "Security Connected" that puts an emphasis on correlating information from its security products to better protect devices.

According to McAfee, the approach is meant to help businesses apply more intelligent and effective security. The enemy of Security Connected is a siloed security strategy found in many businesses where disparate technologies are used to address problems individually rather than holistically, explained Martin Ward, senior director of risk and compliance at McAfee.

"You can never chase the threat curve and think you are going to keep up with it," Ward said. "The right approach to that is to take ... a Security Connected approach, where we're connecting our security products and connecting our security intelligence so that they can all work in concert to prevent the more advanced threats that are occurring out there today."

The need for the Security Connected approach is being driven in part by the consumerization of IT, said Kevin LeBlanc, senior director of product marketing for endpoint security at McAfee.

"The challenge that customers are going through that we're seeing from an organization perspective is that consumer devices-the iPhone, Android the iPad tablet-have now become indispensable productivity work tools," LeBlanc said. "And more and more information workers ... are using these tools in our day-to-day business life, which is providing pressure on the corporations to enable access to applications and business data on the go."

"The IT landscape is rapidly changing," said Chris Christiansen, vice president of security products and services at IDC, in a statement. "Virtualization of servers and endpoints, shifting of data and services to the cloud, and the consumerization of IT is creating new holes in previously protected systems and networks. This is a fundamental shift from even just a few years ago when the bifurcation points between business and personal, outside and inside, and us-and-them was more visible."

Security Connected extends across McAfee's portfolio of security and reporting technologies, ranging from product integration to work with the company's partner ecosystem to deliver services to customers and ensure product compatibility.

Two key pieces of the strategy are the releases this week of Endpoint Security 9.0 and Security Management 5.0. Endpoint Security extends protection to any device, ranging from desktops to virtual machines to mobile devices and embedded systems. The new McAfee Security Management platform, meanwhile, offers a centralized management platform with new interfaces and software development kits to enable businesses to integrate it into existing business processes.

Under Security Connected, if a malicious file is discovered on a laptop or other device, "we'll not only send information about that piece of malware up to our intelligence cloud, but we'll also send what Website did it come from, what network port did it come from, information like that so we can ... isolate that threat and prevent it from spreading and exploding anywhere in the environment," Ward said.

"Disjointed point products simply won't work with today's businesses," said George Kurtz, McAfee's CTO, in a statement. "Security ... needs to be connected and correlated, with shared intelligence, and centrally managed."