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Next-generation endpoint security tools ready to replace antivirus

Maria Korolov | March 3, 2016
The market for next-generation endpoint security tools has doubled each of the last two years.

The market for next-generation endpoint security tools has doubled each of the last two years, and will continue to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 67 percent for the next five years -- but that growth could skyrocket if more vendors are certified as antivirus replacements.

Growth has been dramatic because most of the vendors are still very young, said David Monahan, research director at Enterprise Management Associates.

With new companies, even a small increase in revenues can translate to a high percentage growth rate.

"In addition, organizations recognize they need better prevention or detection and are buying at a break-neck pace to augment their current protection," he said. "The thought is that antivirus protects against nuisance threats and the new stuff can then focus on the rest."

Currently, the size of the next-generation market is about half a billion, according to a report released on Tuesday morning.

This compares to an IDC-estimated $9 billion for the traditional antivirus market, which translates to a relative ratio of about 5 percent.

If widespread certification happens, the cash cow the traditional vendors are still experiencing will be in jeopardy, and the relative size of the market could expand a hundredfold, said the report.

That means that either the next-generation market will grow dramatically, Monahan said, or it will grow not quite as much but the traditional market will shrink.

"Both are a possibility," he said. "If the auditors accept more of the solutions as antivirus replacement -- thus allowing business to buy the more effective solution instead -- they will then drop pay-for antivirus because it saves them money not to use two solutions when unnecessary."

In fact, two vendors, Carbon Black and SentinelOne, have already been certified as antivirus replacements.

"This was not a trivial exercise, but it offers an additional payoff for those companies," the report said. "If either of these companies gains proportionately more market share over the next year, other vendors may decide to make the investment in certification as well, but both will still have a head start of more than a year."

For example, the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard requires that retailers and other organizations that deal with card payments have anti-virus software installed on all systems that can be infected by malware.

Coalfire Systems, which is certified to evaluate vendors for PCI DSS compliance, tested Carbon Black's Enterprise Protection product can be used instead of antivirus because it was able to block attempts to install malicious software, as well as stop cyber threats that evade antivirus using zero-day and targeted attacks.

Carbon Black uses application control -- a type of whitelisting -- to ensure that malicious software is never installed on user devices.


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