Data Center Security Strategies and Vendor Leadership: North American Enterprise Survey

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1 INFONETICS RESEARCH SURVEY EXCERPTS Data Center Security Strategies and Vendor Leadership: North American Enterprise Survey Report Excerpts August 2014 By Analyst Jeff Wilson

2 Table of Contents BIG CHANGES BREWING IN ENTERPRISE DATA CENTER SECURITY 1 DRIVERS 2 ARCHITECTURE 4 VIRTUAL APPLIANCES 6 PERFORMANCE REQUIREMENTS 7 CISCO CONSIDERED TOP DATA CENTER SECURITY SOLUTION SUPPLIER 8 BOTTOM LINE 8 SURVEY AUTHOR 9 ABOUT INFONETICS RESEARCH 9 List of Exhibits Exhibit 1 New Data Center Security Solution Purchase Drivers 3 Exhibit 2 Security Solutions Deployed in the Data Center 5 Exhibit 3 Virtual Appliance Deployment Drivers 6

3 BIG CHANGES BREWING IN ENTERPRISE DATA CENTER SECURITY IT organizations around the globe are consolidating and re-architecting data centers in an effort to get the scale and agility they need to operate their businesses and manage cost. When making new security purchases for the data center, buyers have to consider a wide range of security products: from server software that protects a single machine (physical or virtual) to virtual appliances that deliver security at the hypervisor level, and even big iron security appliances that sit in the data center in multiple locations. To understand how enterprises view key vendors in the data center security space, we conducted a web survey of qualified IT purchase decision-makers at 104 medium and large organizations (over 500 employees) with their own data centers in March 2014, and this paper summarizes some of the key findings. 1

4 DRIVERS The most significant transformation affecting enterprise data centers today is the adoption of server virtualization technology as it s the building block of the virtualized data center and the first step toward the eventual rollout of SDN in the data center. 78% of respondents consider it to be a driver for purchasing new security solutions (rating it a 6 or 7 on a scale of 1 7, where 1 is not a driver and 7 is a strong driver ); rolling out virtualized servers will require them to invest in new security solutions in the data center. Applications running on virtual servers are subject to all the same threats as applications running on dedicated servers, but the security solutions that typically front-end those servers have significantly decreased visibility in a virtualized environment. This leads to incomplete security for traffic going in and out of virtualized servers and in many cases NO security for traffic flowing between virtual machines (VMs) on the same server. This problem has been exacerbated by the organic way many companies roll out virtual servers, often installing a mix of database, enterprise, and Web applications on the same physical machine (also known as VM sprawl); combined with the lack of inter-vm security solutions, this leaves many companies open to significant new threats. Data center consolidation at many large enterprises has driven increased deployment of virtualization, and the security problem is greatly exaggerated at data center speeds. SDN compatibility isn t a major driver today, and we expect next year (2015) will be a transitional year for SDN as a driver and in 2016 SDNs will be a mainstream purchase driver for data center security solutions. 2

5 Exhibit 1 New Data Center Security Solution Purchase Drivers After adding protection for virtualized servers, respondents react to a series of high-level trends, including adding new security products that can handle the massive performance upgrades happening inside most data centers, coping with regulatory requirements, and managing an increasingly hostile threat environment. 77% of respondents need solutions with increased session handling performance, and around 70% need products with throughput and interfaces to match their new high-speed networks (40G and 100G interfaces and 200G+ throughput). Nearly three-quarters need to add new threat protection technologies to get a handle on the new threats they re facing. 3

6 ARCHITECTURE When security architects look to solve the data center security problem, they have a long list of technology and business requirements to satisfy, but their product choices tend to settle into 3 basic groups regardless of whether enterprises are buying for a more traditional data center, a data center where some of the server and storage has been virtualized, or a fully virtualized data center on its way to a full SDN implementation. Large high performance appliances (firewalls, IPS, DDoS, etc.) are still required to protect data center infrastructure from attack. The applications and protocols these devices protect continue to evolve, and performance requirements continue to increase unabated. In some cases, high performance appliances can be virtualization-aware and capable of directing traffic to and from VMs and in the future will even work with SDN orchestration platforms. After the big iron comes protection of servers at the hypervisor level. The exact security functions of these products vary, and the extent to which they communicate with other security elements varies as well, but most agree it's a requirement to have something that can interact with the hypervisor and protect multiple virtual machines. Over time, these platforms will build in support for SDN orchestration as well. 4

7 Finally, there s protection of individual server instances with traditional server security software. We asked respondents about their basic strategies for deploying security in the data center, and they clearly favor a multi-layered approach, with many respondents already deploying a mix of hardware appliances and virtual appliances. More than half deploy server-level security software per-vm despite the fact that this is the most expensive and most difficult to manage data center security deployment model. It s interesting to note that many respondents expect to decrease their use of hardware appliances in the data center 2 years out; this is part of a larger shift toward virtualized infrastructure, with forward-thinking buyers clearly expecting cloud solutions to impact their architecture. We expect future deployments of SDN to shift the balance of hardware and software appliances in the data center. We believe this (migration from hardware to software) will likely be the case for higher-layer security technologies first (messaging, IPS, application, web protection), and we believe that there will always likely be hardware security infrastructure for DDoS mitigation and firewalls. Exhibit 2 Security Solutions Deployed in the Data Center 5

8 VIRTUAL APPLIANCES Given that nearly all respondents plan to deploy virtual appliances for security by 2014, it makes sense to look more closely at the impact of virtualization on security. Virtualized server environments (from a single virtualized server in a wiring closet at an SMB running a mix of apps to a massive data center used to deliver cloud services) present unique challenges when it comes to security. So what drives respondents to deploy virtual appliance solutions? Respondents rated factors in the decision to purchase virtual security appliances for their data centers, on a scale of 1 7, where 1 is not a driver and 7 is a strong driver; the next chart shows the percent of respondents rating each factor 6 or 7, or a driver. Overall, the drivers are a mix of specific security issues (preventing new and inter-vm threats) and configuration/management issues (maintaining server configurations, improving server performance, and gaining visibility). Exhibit 3 Virtual Appliance Deployment Drivers 6

9 PERFORMANCE REQUIREMENTS As mentioned earlier, many data center network upgrades have happened in the last 2 years, and more are coming. It is not uncommon to see 10G and 40G switch ports in the data center, and demand for 100G-capable security gear is right around the bend in fact, over 600K 40G or 100G Ethernet ports shipped in 2013, many to data centers. 70% of respondents indicated in the drivers question that upgrading security appliances to gain access to high speed network interfaces is a purchase driver. So we asked respondents to indicate their current maximum interface requirement for security appliances in the data center and what they expect it to be in The unavoidable trend is toward higher speeds. 46% of respondents indicate they already have a need for 40G ports on security gear now, and 55% say they ll need 100G interfaces by After port speeds, we asked respondents to tell us what maximum stateful inspection throughput they will require their high-end firewalls to support in the next year, and 65% are looking for platforms with over 100G of aggregate performance, with 36% saying they need 500G and above. Firewall companies need to help customers accurately spec high-end firewalls and give realistic estimates of real-world performance to build important trust during the purchase process. The final performance metric we asked respondents about was connections per second; in the drivers question above we already identified this as a key driver for new purchases, so the question is, how many max connections do security solutions in the data need to support? Only 2% of respondents are looking for solutions in the <50K range, and the largest group (28%) are looking for roughly 500K to 1M CPS. For many data centers, max connection performance requirements have increased significantly in the last 3 years, with buyers looking for new solutions that support from 3x to 10x their existing security devices. 7

10 CISCO CONSIDERED TOP DATA CENTER SECURITY SOLUTION SUPPLIER In an open-ended question, we asked respondents whom they consider to be the top 3 security solution suppliers for data centers, a measure called unaided brand awareness, which provides a good view of overall brand strength. Cisco is the clear leader here for the second year in a row, leads in overall supplier familiarity, and scores the highest in all 10 leadership criteria we asked respondents about (technology innovation, security, management, price/performance, price, financial stability, service and support, product roadmap, product reliability, and solution breadth). BOTTOM LINE Big changes are brewing in enterprise data centers, and buyers need to deploy security architecture that not only adapts to new network architectures and tremendous performance increases, but that can also stand up to increasingly powerful and deceptive attacks. Respondents to this survey spent an average of $16.9M on security products for the data center in 2013, which they plan to grow to an average of $31.0M in 2015 (a 84% increase), and they re making investments in a wide range of technologies and architectures. Vendors need to deliver the range of threat protection buyers want (firewall, IPS, web security, sandboxing, DDoS) on a range of platforms (from physical to virtual) with an eye towards preparing them for SDNs over the next few years. 8

11 SURVEY AUTHOR Jeff Wilson Principal Analyst, Security Infonetics Research ABOUT INFONETICS RESEARCH Infonetics Research is an international market research and consulting analyst firm serving the communications industry since A leader in defining and tracking emerging and established technologies in all world regions, Infonetics helps clients plan, strategize, and compete more effectively. REPORT REPRINTS AND CUSTOM RESEARCH To learn about distributing excerpts from Infonetics reports or custom research, please contact: North America (West) and Asia Pacific Larry Howard, Vice President, North America (East, Midwest, Texas), Latin America and EMEA Scott Coyne, Senior Account Director, Greater China and Southeast Asia 大 中 华 区 及 东 南 亚 地 区 Jeffrey Song, Market Analyst 市 场 分 析 师 及 客 户 经 理

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