Security Spending Among Small Businesses Tops $19 Billion: AMI

The increase in cloud-based security spending is being driven by the proliferation of mobile devices and BYOD initiatives.

Small and midsize business spending on-cloud based security solutions is driving the worldwide market for SMB security, which is expected to experience an overall compound annual growth rate of more than 10 percent from 2011 through 2016, according to IT research firm Access Markets International Partners€™ 2012 "Global SMB Security Market Assessment." Security spending among SMBs topped $19 billion in 2011, according to AMI Partners.

Cloud security services currently accounts for nearly 17 percent of the worldwide security spending and is projected to increase to 24 percent by 2016, according to the report. Among the key drivers of cloud-based security are weak economic conditions and capital expenditure restraints, making the cloud payment model a more attractive way of procuring information and communications technology (ICT) solutions.

€œSecurity is a complex issue with rapidly changing permutations. Widespread lack of technical resources and expertise is leading to an increasing desire to outsource the problem among small and medium businesses,€ comments Hugh Gibbs, AMI Partners vice president of research for EMEA (Europe, the Middle East and Africa) and report author. €œThis is presenting major opportunities for managed service solutions€”particularly for skilled, local channel partners and managed security service providers.€

The increase in cloud-based security spending is also being driven by the proliferation of mobile devices, both officially purchased company-sanctioned devices and employees€™ own devices being used for both private and work-related activities. Bring-your-own-device (BYOD) initiatives are also heightening security concerns among small-business IT departments, where support for the mobile workforce can strain resources, the report said.

With this in mind, the report suggests several approaches security vendors should be considering in the SMB security space, including easy-to-deploy cloud service offerings within competitively priced service bundles. AMI research indicated bundling could increase potential service uptake by a factor of four or five. AMI also recommends vendors offer products and services through a variety of different channels, including cloud-enabled local channel partners, service providers and retail/e-tail stores.

The report, which AMI noted will publish soon, also covers current and planned on-premise and cloud security solution usage, key ICT and security priorities, highlighting mobility as the current challenge for SMB management, and channel usage and preferences among SMB security vendors. Overall, the study explores the market opportunities that are and will be available to security vendors worldwide.