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5/11/2010
08:33 AM
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Verizon Enters Cloud Security Market

Small and medium businesses have been moving their IT infrastructure into the cloud, but one challenge has been determining how to secure such applications. To address such concerns, Verizon Business has developed a new suite of cloud-based security services.

Small and medium businesses have been moving their IT infrastructure into the cloud, but one challenge has been determining how to secure such applications. To address such concerns, Verizon Business has developed a new suite of cloud-based security services.Verizon Business has delivered a variety of managed network services to small and medium businesses, such as mobility, contact centers, hosting, VoIP, and security, and has been gradually migrating them to the cloud. The company plans to deliver its new security services in three phases. In June, the company will offer a secure gateway service that features anti-virus, anti-spam, anti-malware and URL filtering services. In the fall, the vendor plans to add network firewalls and intrusion detection and prevention services. In early 2011, Verizon will make its Denial of Service detection and mitigation services available in the cloud. The company did not announce pricing for its services.

Verizon has been a prime supplier of managed services to small and medium businesses for many years. The company first started with network services and has branched into related areas. The vendor offers a number of services, however, the services sometimes can be delivered in a cookie cutter fashion that does not always match a customers business needs. In addition, the vendors services can be expensive.

Recently, the company has been facing more competition. Cable companies have been moving aggressively into the managed services market and have developed a wide  and ever expanding -- array of services. In addition, movement to the cloud has blurred the delimiters between Verizon and some of its traditional IT partners. Consequently, the company finds itself immersed in a highly volatile marketplace. Verizon has done a good job delivering services that appeal to small and medium businesses and moving into cloud fits with their desires. The company seems to have the resources and reputation to emerge as a key player in this market segment, however, customers will easily be able to find alternatives if the vendor fails to delivers robust, cost competitive security services.

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