Who you gonna call?

On the promise of strong growth forecasts, the managed security services market is attracting a diverse and growing roster of competitors.

The marketplace includes "a lot of big guys, little guys, telcos and just about anybody who was ever a value-added reseller" of security products, said Allen Vance, director of product offerings at Internet Security Systems Inc.

"Trying to compare them one against another is difficult," said Matthew Kovar, a senior analyst at the Yankee Group, who divides companies according to the markets they serve and the cost of their services. Those costs range from $500 to about $5,000 per month, Kovar said, noting that the government market largely fits into the high end.

Costs vary according to the size of the operation, the services offered and preset service levels, such as incident- response times.

For those fees, organizations receive one or more of several services, which the SANS Institute, a research and educational or.ganization for system administrators and security professionals, divides into six categories:

* Intelligence gathering, which involves actively monitoring Internet data sources for potential threats.

* Vulnerability assessment, which entails regularly scanning Internet-accessible systems and private networks and reporting scan results to customers.

* Firewall and virtual private network management.

* Incident response, which could involve a range of actions, including shutting down an infected host or conducting a forensics investigation.

* Policy compliance, which entails making sure that intrusion-detection systems and firewall activities comply with secu.rity policies.

* Virus scrubbing of all incoming and outgoing e-mail messages.

Featured

  • People
    Federal CIO Suzette Kent

    Federal CIO Kent to exit in July

    During her tenure, Suzette Kent pushed on policies including Trusted Internet Connection, identity management and the creation of the Chief Data Officers Council

  • Defense
    Essye Miller, Director at Defense Information Management, speaks during the Breaking the Gender Barrier panel at the Air Space, Cyber Conference in National Harbor, Md., Sept. 19, 2017. (U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Chad Trujillo)

    Essye Miller: The exit interview

    Essye Miller, DOD's outgoing principal deputy CIO, talks about COVID, the state of the tech workforce and the hard conversations DOD has to have to prepare personnel for the future.

Stay Connected

FCW INSIDER

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.