COMDEXvirtual: Symantec's Salem Emphasizes 'People And Information'

If there's one message that Symantec CEO Enrique Salem wants to get across, it is that fundamental data-centric industry trends will give solution providers more services and solutions opportunities.

Salem outlined Symantec's corporate vision, which includes a more data-centric strategy, during a keynote address Tuesday at COMDEXvirtual, the online conference hosted by CRN parent company Everything Channel. The show takes place November 16 - 17, and sessions are available on-demand until May 17, 2011.

Symantec's strategy will allow partners to take advantage key IT "mega-trends," such as the consumerization of IT, the IT-ization of the consumer, mobility, social networking and the cloud. These days, it's all about people and information, he said.

"Everything will revolve around people and information. The devices are not that important. Devices will come and go," he said.

Sponsored post

Salem said that two of the biggest emerging IT trends on the horizon are the consumerization of IT, and conversely, the IT-ization of consumers. Specifically, a wider range of disparate IT devices, such as Apple iPhones and iPads, RIM BlackBerrys and Android-based smartphones are being -- and will be -- brought into the workplace to be used for business as well as personal use, further blurring the line between work and home.

Users will continually expect to access information that's readily available and secure, even when they're on vacation or away from the office, he said.

"We expect that everything will come together. Your business and personal digital persona will come together," he said. "We expect to be able to conduct our jobs and continue with our personal lives, and have simple and secure access to all the information we need at any time."

Conversely, in a trend that Salem called the IT-ization of the consumer, Salem emphasized that more consumers are buying and investing in technology for daily personal use, but often don’t have the technical expertise or an administrative team to backup and secure those devices, Salem said.

In addition, Salem said that the cloud will continue to "drive efficiencies beyond today," both for enterprise and the SMB, as they look to cut costs and do more with less.

"The enterprise is trying to become more efficient and scalable," he said, noting that the dot-com boom was one of the few periods in IT that sacrificed cost efficiencies for the ability to build out infrastructure. "Building more cost-effective and scalable IT is what matters today," he said.

In light of a myriad of emerging "mega-trends," Salem said that security companies such as Symantec would have to focus on five key enablers: identity security, device security, information protection, context and relevance and the cloud.

NEXT: Salem Tells Partners To Build Solutions Around Key Enablers

"It's a fundamental shift of IT, where they have to think about these key pillars," he said, adding that these enablers would also prompt consumers and IT administrators to rethink their approach to security.

For example, in light of the increasing amount of information stored on digital devices, Salem emphasized that device security couldn't rely on the same old failsafe security mechanisms.

"As more and more information is going to our devices, a four-digit PIN is not sufficient," he said.

Likewise, Salem said that information protection would also require a more comprehensive approach.

"This isn't just keeping the information secure. This is also the ability to backup and recover the information and make it available when it's needed," Salem said.

Ultimately, Salem underscored that the major shifts in IT are creating a new opportunity for Symantec partners to customize solutions and offer services tailored to their customers' specific needs, data and environment that will "go beyond traditional implementation."

"How can they better use technology that creates business value? What's the right architecture for my environment?" he said. "For our partners, what we're laying out is a clear vision that will be supported by products and their services to utilize on that vision."

Register now to attend COMDEXvirtual or to access on-demand sessions.