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- Ron Karjian, Managing Editor
Data managers find themselves working against the clock to mine significant value from the floods of incoming data filling their lakes beyond capacity. Rest assured, their companies are well aware of the uphill battle they face in turning all that information into gold and providing a competitive advantage.
As a result, big data and business analytics top the list of broad business initiatives this year, according TechTarget's "2018 IT Priorities Survey" of North American companies. Specifically, their planned software purchases include cloud-based applications, business analytics and intelligence, big data processing and management, data integration, artificial intelligence and data visualization.
Dramatic rise seen in security spending
To improve data integrity protection inside and outside companies, another kind of software figures prominently in 2018 corporate spending plans. Gartner estimated that worldwide enterprise security spending will reach $96 billion this year -- an 8% increase over last year. Security services will account for more than half of all security spending, with infrastructure protection a distant second. The largest spending increase over last year belongs to identity and access management.
In addition to cyberattacks, data breaches and the move to digital business strategies, the research firm cited U.S. privacy and security laws, including the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act and the National Institute of Standards and Technology as well as the European Union's impending General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), to be among the major reasons for increased enterprise security spending in 2018. GDPR, according to TechTarget's survey, is on the broad initiatives radar screen for 8% of North American companies as they prepare for the impact of the regulation's May 25 debut.
"Overall, a large portion of security spending is driven by an organization's reaction toward security breaches as more high-profile cyberattacks and data breaches affect organizations worldwide," Gartner analyst Ruggero Contu said in a press release.
Over the past two years, increases in security spending have risen dramatically, and by 2020, Gartner predicted that almost twice as many organizations (60%) will invest in multiple data security tools to help bolster data integrity protection, including data loss prevention, encryption, and data-centric audit and protection tools. Forrester surveys indicate that 74% of global enterprise security technology decision-makers place a high or critical priority on improving security monitoring, and a good portion of them have implemented or are expanding their implementation of security information management and security analytics.
Shift to behavior analytics, endpoint response, outsourcing
There's also a shift among IT leaders toward endpoint detection and response as well as user entity and behavior analytics, according to Gartner. That trend will disrupt traditional markets such as endpoint protection platforms and security information and event management (SIEM). Nevertheless, SIEM, along with security testing and IT outsourcing, will be among the fastest-growing security subsegments driving growth in the infrastructure protection and security services.
Skills shortages, technological advances and cyberthreats will continue driving the move to automation and outsourcing to bolster data integrity protection. As a result, organizations are seeking "external help from security consultants, managed security service providers and outsourcers," Contu explained. By 2019, Gartner predicted total enterprise spending on security outsourcing services will comprise 75% of the spending on security software and hardware products, up from 63% two years ago.