VeriSign Expands Its Managed Security Services

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VeriSign this week rolled out an expanded managed security services offering built upon acquisitions and key technology partnerships.

At NetWorld Interop here, VeriSign introduced managed VPN and firewall services, managed intrusion detection and content vulnerability scanning services, and managed virus-scanning services.

The company already provides managed public-key infrastructure (PKI), SSL and DNS services to more than 4,000 customers.

A couple of VeriSign acquisitions -- Exault, a Chicago-based consultancy, and MSP Telenisus, Rolling Meadows, Ill. -- allowed the company to expand its managed security services portfolio, said Bob McCullen, VeriSign's senior director of managed security services.

VeriSign also forged partnerships with several security vendors in order to broaden its managed security offerings. The new services integrate technology from ActivCard, Aprisma Management Technologies, Check Point Software Technologies, Enterasys Networks, netForensics, Nokia and Counterpane Internet Security.

"We've partnered with multiple vendors in each [security category to give customers more flexibility," McCullen said.

That broad range of technology differentiates VeriSign's managed security services from boutique firms, he said.

The company is offering its managed security services direct and through the channel, and has signed on some regional security firms as partners, McCullen said.

"We try to work with partners to augment their capability," he said.

VARs can leverage VeriSign's brand name and global infrastructure, he said.

Over the past year, the managed security services market has undergone a massive shakeout, with many companies going out of business or selling off their managed security operations to competitors.

Still, the forecast for the market continues to be strong, with IDC predicting that demand for managed security will grow to $2.2 billion by 2005 from $729 million in 2000.

Driven by budget constraints and the overwhelming amount of data produced by security products, companies are looking to outsource their security, McCullen said.

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