Magic Quadrant for MSSPs, North America
North American enterprises face a wide range of options when selecting a managed security service provider for security monitoring and management. This Magic Quadrant provides MSS buyers with our advice on selecting MSSPs that meet security and compliance monitoring requirements.
For the purposes of this research, Gartner defines managed security services (MSSs) as "the remote management or monitoring of IT security functions delivered via remote security operations centers (SOCs), not through personnel on-site." Therefore, MSSs do not include staff augmentation or any consulting or development and integration services.
- Monitored or managed firewalls or intrusion prevention systems (IPSs)
- Monitoring or managed intrusion detection systems (IDSs)
- Distributed denial of service (DDoS) protection
- Managed secure messaging gateways
- Managed secure Web gateways
- Security information management (SIM)
- Security event management
- Managed vulnerability scanning of networks, servers, databases or applications
- Security vulnerability or threat notification services
- Log management and analysis
- Reporting associated with monitored/managed devices and incident response
This Magic Quadrant evaluates managed security service providers (MSSPs) that offer monitored/managed firewall and intrusion detection prevention (IDP) functions, rather than those whose main focus is on other elements of the services we have listed.
Source: Gartner (November 2012)
Allstream provides telecommunications and security services to the Canadian market. Allstream's MSSs are primarily device management and multifunction firewall services for premises-based and network-based controls. Allstream positions managed security as a key component of its bandwidth and networking services, with a focus on compliance requirements for retail, financial services and energy markets. Allstream partners with Dell SecureWorks for the delivery of advanced security management, monitoring and SIM on-demand services. Allstream's MSS architecture includes Checkpoint Technologies for the collection, correlation and reporting of data from, and management of, Checkpoint products. Allstream also manages Juniper Networks devices. Workflow and ticketing are delivered through commercial technologies. Advanced capabilities for monitoring and alerting are delivered via Dell SecureWorks. MSS operations are subject to SAS 70/S.5970 audits. Basic log management and reporting services are available as hosted or customer premises deployments. Compliance-specific reporting is available through SecureWorks-delivered services. Allstream's targeted attack protection is delivered via its DDoS protection services. Advanced analytics services embedded as a component of MSS are planned. Canadian firms seeking managed services for multifunction or network-based firewalls should evaluate Allstream.
- Allstream's network-based, customer premises equipment (CPE) and multifunction firewall capabilities are positioned to address the needs of small or midsize business (SMB) buyers and large enterprises.
- Allstream customers give good marks for security device management.
- Allstream's security portal provides limited functionality compared with that of competitors. Advanced security management/monitoring, reporting and SIM functionality are available through Dell SecureWorks services.
AT&T offers security monitoring and management services for customer-based and network-based security controls — including wireless — in addition to a wide range of other IT and telecommunications services. AT&T uses commercial technologies and self-developed technology for alert and log collection, real-time correlation, reporting and device management. Workflow is supported by the AT&T BusinessDirect portal. Query and browsing of log data are supported via commercial and self-developed technology. Three SOCs are located in the U.S., with others in Asia/Pacific and Europe. SOCs are audited to the SSAE 16 and ISAE standards, and are PCI-certified. AT&T also indicates compliance with U.S. Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA) guidelines and ISO 27001-2005. Hosted (multitenant) log management services are delivered with self-developed technology, HP ArcSight Logger and Trustwave Intellitactics security information and event management (SIEM). Customer premises log management is delivered via Intellitactics. Log management and MSS functions are access through different portals. Integration of functions into a single portal is planned. AT&T's advanced threat offering is the Security Event and Threat Analysis (SETA) service, which includes correlation and analysis of data from customer devices and the AT&T network, with customer-specific configuration and response templates. Enterprises requiring a global service provider with a broad range of service offerings and deployment capabilities that include CPE and network-based options, or customers of other AT&T services seeking MSSs from an incumbent provider, should consider AT&T.
- AT&T's Gartner customers are aware of AT&T's MSS and often include AT&T in competitive MSS evaluations.
- Its MSS offerings can be delivered in hybrid combinations that include network-based and CPE delivery options.
- AT&T is an established and stable service provider, with a presence and delivery capabilities in multiple geographies.
- Its MSS portal lacks standardized asset reporting and the log browsing capabilities available in several competitor portals.
- MSS customers report that their positive regard for AT&T's MSS can be tempered by frustrations caused by a broader relationship with AT&T for other nonsecurity services.
Bell Canada's service portfolio includes professional, hosted and managed services for network, video, contact center, customer experience and unified communication solutions, in addition to professional services and MSSs. Bell's security management business is primarily more-traditional account-based outsourcing delivery, rather than shared remote security monitoring.
Bell delivers its MSS using commercial SIEM technologies (custom software may be used for log collection) and device management technologies. Log management is supported with HP ArcSight deployed as a hosted or CPE option. MSS and log management are addressed via separate portals. Bell's security operations in Montreal and Ottawa are ISO 27001-certified. Bell's targeted attack detection capabilities are embodied in its DDoS protection offering. Enterprises seeking an established vendor for MSS delivery in the Canadian market should consider Bell.
- Bell offers on-site staff augmentation to support customer SIEM deployments as an option with its remote MSS.
- Its MSS capabilities are well-known in the Canadian market.
- Bell has strong delivery experience with large governmental entities in Canada.
- The correlation display capabilities and ticketing support of the Bell MSS portal are not as rich as competitor portals. Display of correlated log data or firewall/IDP data with user data, for example, is available only as a custom-developed capability.
BT offers managed security and other security services as part of its larger portfolio of telecommunications and IT services. MSS offerings include monitoring and management of customer premises deployed devices and network-based technology. BT's MSS architecture uses self-developed technology for log and event collection, correlation, query, reporting and device management. Commercial technology supports workflow. The BT MSS portal provides role-based access, access to correlated events, reports and ticketing/workflow. Assure Analytics, an extension to the MSS portal, provides additional analysis and visualization capabilities. Log management services provide basic reporting and retention capabilities, with access provided via a separate log management portal. BT has three SOCs in the U.S. and 10 more in other regions. U.S. and U.K. SOCs are ISO 27001-certified. Capabilities to detect targeted attacks and provide advanced analytics is based on botnet detection, DDoS prevention, analysis of network traffic and authentication events from OSs and applications, and on the data visualization features of Assure Analytics. BT customers seeking managed security deployments in multiple regions and with flexible delivery options should consider BT.
- BT's security service delivery capability includes complex MSS deployments, including options for premises-based and network-based security monitoring, device management, and security dashboards.
- BT has a presence and security service delivery capabilities in multiple geographies.
- BT's efforts to consolidate and focus its MSS have resulted in low visibility and little knowledge of BT's MSS capabilities among Gartner customers in North America. Potential customers should consider current capabilities and planned service enhancements.
- BT's log management service lacks the breadth of security, operations and compliance reporting available in competitor offerings.
Savvis, A CenturyLink Company (CenturyLink-Savvis), provides global cloud-based services, including infrastructure as a service, software as a service (SaaS), Web hosting, colocation and network services. Its MSS has been primarily focused on CenturyLink-Savvis infrastructure service customers. Its MSS architecture includes commercial and self-developed technology for data collection, correlation and analysis, reporting, and device management. Commercial tools support workflow functions. MSS operations are audited under SSAE 16 (SAS 70), PCI Data Security Standard (PCI DSS), and CenturyLink-Savvis expects U.S. Government TIC 2.0 certification by the end of 2012. Log management functions are delivered with a combination of Tibco (LogLogic) technology and self-developed technology. Log management functions are available through the MSS portal. Advanced analytics to detect targeted attacks are embedded within the CenturyLink-Savvis MSS capabilities, based on DDoS detection/mitigation, Web application firewalls (WAFs), network and host IDS/IPS, and file integrity monitoring. CenturyLink-Savvis' infrastructure and network services customers should consider the company for managed security.
- CenturyLink's acquisition of Savvis provides an opportunity for a broader range of enterprise and SMB customers to acquire MSSs.
- CenturyLink-Savvis can provide a broad range of security controls as a component of network and cloud infrastructure services.
- CenturyLink-Savvis' security expertise is enhanced by its Arca Common Criteria Testing Laboratory.
- Current customers and prospects should require CenturyLink-Savvis to provide updates to its service delivery road map as the integration activities among the security services delivered by Savvis and by CenturyLink are rationalized.
- The CenturyLink-Savvis MSS portal is not as rich as several competitor portals in correlation of IPS data with other data sources, or with integration of ticketing functions with enterprise ticketing systems.
CGI provides a broad range of services, including managed security, IT and business outsourcing, consulting, and system integration. CGI provides services globally to major vertical markets, including government, financial services, manufacturing, retail and distribution. CGI uses several commercial technologies for event and data collection, and a commercial SIEM for correlation and alerting. Report creation and display are done by self-developed technology. Ticketing/workflow and device management are done with commercial products. Log management services are based on HP ArcSight Logger, Tibco (LogLogic) and Splunk deployments, with hosted services available for Logger and LogLogic. CGI is authorized to process "particularly sensitive" information for the Government of Canada, and its MSS operations conform to the Corporate Quality Program, which is ISO-9001-2004-certified. Operations centers are located in the U.S. and Canada to serve customers in each country, with no data access or information sharing across SOCs.
The CGI MSS portal includes role-based access, predefined executive and operations reports, and the ability to view vulnerability scan results. Ad hoc reporting, compliance-specific reports and access to log data are available via the console of the commercial log management technology for customers of that service. Real-time correlation across network and other monitored technologies is available via communication with the SOC, not via the MSS portal. Log management reports and read-only access to log data are available through the MSS portal. CGI offers advanced threat detection via correlation of customer logs with external IP reputation feeds to identify traffic to or from potentially malicious sites. Organizations in government, financial services and insurance markets, as well as those requiring MSS delivery in the U.S. and Canada, should consider CGI.
- CGI is a recognized MSS provider to Gartner customers in Canada; however, it is less visible in the U.S. outside of the government vertical market.
- Customers give CGI good marks for MSS delivery and for strong security expertise in the context of overall IT outsourcing.
- CGI's country-specific MSS operations are designed to isolate Canadian customers from concerns about the U.S. Patriot Act, and to provide services in each country to government customers.
- CGI's MSS portal lags that of competitors in features related to the display and analysis of security incidents, and user-defined reporting.
- CGI's MSS delivery, based on customer requirements in the U.S. and Canada, precludes sharing of detailed data among SOCs, and reduces the traditional MSSP value proposition of greater visibility across a large number of customers and devices to detect trends and early indications of adverse activities.
Clone Systems is a pure-play MSS and PCI-certified provider offering services for SIEM, IPS, vulnerability scanning and secure private clouds for retail, financial services, healthcare, education and other vertical markets. Clone delivers services primarily in North America, but it has a European presence and plans additional expansion there and into Asia/Pacific markets. Clone delivers its MSS primarily with self-developed technology for data collection, analysis, reporting and workflow. Commercial and self-developed technology is used for device management. Log management is delivered with hosted HP ArcSight, McAfee Nitro, OSSIM, Splunk and CorreLog SIEM technologies. Log management functions are accessible through the MSS portal. Clone has two North American SOCs and one in Europe, each staffed 24/7. MSS operations are PCI-compliant. Targeted attack detection capabilities are delivered via MSS support for WAF, next-generation firewall and next-generation IPS technology. Midsize organizations looking for a vendor-neutral MSS to address regulatory compliance requirements and security monitoring should consider Clone.
- Clone offers flexible contracting that includes month-to-month and subscription-based services.
- Clone customers offer positive feedback on security expertise and service delivery, including adding value beyond the scope of MSS coverage.
- Potential MSS buyers seeking extensive and proactive interaction with MSS SOC analysts for threat management should validate that Clone support capabilities are appropriately aligned with customer expectations.
- Customers should monitor Clone service delivery and ensure that business expansion is positively affecting service levels.
CSC delivers its MSS as a stand-alone service and as a complement to its IT outsourcing and consulting services to enterprises and government agencies. CSC's MSS capabilities use a variety of commercial SIEM technologies for data collection and correlation and real-time alert generation. The self-developed portal provides access to alerts, reporting, ticketing and workflow. Commercial technologies are used for device management. Log management is delivered via Symantec Security Information Manager and HP ArcSight in North America, with hosted and customer premises deployments available. CSC has four SOCs in the U.S., one in Europe and three in the Asia/Pacific region. U.S. SOCs are ISAE 3402 to SSAE 16 audited, and comply with ISO 20000, ISO 9001:2008 and ISO 27001. Capabilities to address targeted attacks are embedded in CSC's MSS services and include a customer-facing advanced analytic team. Near-term plans call for the optional deployment of CSC's advanced threat detection solution to augment the MSS services. CSC outsourcing customers and enterprises in the defense industrial base and financial services industries should consider CSC for MSS.
- CSC's updated MSS portal supports extensive customization, as well as improved reporting and dashboard features.
- It offers flexible delivery options that include on-site staff as liaisons between CSC analysts and customer staff.
- CSC security expertise supports its strong presence in the U.S. federal government and critical infrastructure markets.
- CSC has low visibility to Gartner customers looking for stand-alone MSS.
- Its MSS delivery capabilities differ across North America, Asia/Pacific and European regions. Potential MSS customers for multiregional deployments should validate that required capabilities are available where needed, and that CSC's plans for a standardized global SOC infrastructure will meet deployment requirements.
Dell SecureWorks' is part of Dell Services, and offers MSSs and security consulting services. Dell SecureWorks' MSS delivery is based on self-developed technology for log and alert collection, for real-time correlation and analysis, and for presentation/reporting via portal. Device management is also delivered via self-developed technology. Commercial technologies or SecureWorks' own technologies that are hosted or deployed on customer premises are used to log retention and reporting. Dell SecureWorks Counter Threat Unit provides threat intelligence, malware analysis and analytic support for MSS operations. Customers may buy these services as part of an MSS subscription. SOCs operations are subject to SAS 70-Type II/SSAE 16 audits, as well as audits by financial industry supervisory agencies. One facility meets ISO 27001 standards. Five SOCs are located in the U.S., with additional SOCs in the U.K., India, Mexico and Eastern Europe. Dell SecureWorks portal is full-featured, with role-based accounts, extensive customization data display features, and correlation across the data sources collected. Predefined compliance reports include support for PCI, energy, banking and U.S. Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Act requirements. Log management functions are available through the MSS portal. SecureWorks also offers services to manage customer-deployed SIEMs from HP ArcSight; RSA, The Security Division of EMC; and Tibco (LogLogic). Advanced attack detection is offered within existing MSSs and includes correlation with database attacker, threat feeds, correlation and analysis of historical events to identify anomalies, and matches to attack patterns. SMBs seeking to meet compliance requirements and enterprises looking for full-featured MSSs should consider Dell SecureWorks.
- Customers of Dell Services for IT infrastructure management can leverage the Dell relationship to access MSSs from a trusted vendor.
- Gartner customers offer strong praise for Dell SecureWorks' MSS delivery, security expertise and relationship management.
- Dell SecureWorks' recently upgraded MSS portal provides a flexible and customizable platform for data display, reporting and workflow support.
- MSS customers should continue to monitor SecureWorks service delivery to confirm that ongoing integration into Dell, MSS geographic expansion and the establishment of a Dell security products group do not dilute its MSS focus and delivery capabilities.
HCL Technologies offers MSS and security consulting as part of a broad portfolio of IT services for consulting, integration and outsourcing. HCL's MSSs are delivered via commercial technologies for data collection, analytics, portal reporting and workflow, and device management. HP ArcSight, Tibco (LogLogic), BlackCloud (Netforensics), RSA enVision, or IBM QRadar is used for log management, which is offered as a customer premises or hosted deployment. Access to log management functions is available via the MSS portal. HCL has one U.S.-based SOC, and five others in multiple regions around the world. In addition to undergoing SAS-70 Type II audits, all MSS data centers have the following certifications: ISO 9001, ISO 27001, ISO 2000-1, ISO 14001:2004. Capabilities to address targeted threats and provide advanced analysis are based on network behavior analysis, statistical analysis, IP reputation and geography, DNS and proxy monitoring, and security intelligence feeds. Enterprises that use HCL for IT services, and are seeking MSSs from an incumbent partner, should consider HCL.
- HCL's portal has user-customizable displays and graphics that provide drill-down views to underlying alert or log data.
- HCL offers flexible service delivery options for MSS and other security services, and can adapt operations to meet specific customer requirements.
- MSS customers offer mixed feedback on HCL's MSS delivery, including reports of lack of proactive support, lack of reporting and improper service execution.
- Potential MSS customers should require security-specific service levels for service delivery, reporting, relationship management and remedies.
HP offers professional and managed services for security, as well as security technologies for SIEM, application and network security, in addition to a large portfolio of IT products and services. HP uses several commercial technologies for data collection, correlation/alerting and query. Reporting is done via commercial and self-developed technologies. Workflow and ticketing use self-developed technologies and ticketing tools for customer deployment. Device management is done with commercial technologies. HP offers a portal for MSS and uses the HP ArcSight console for log management. HP offers a separate governance, risk and compliance-oriented portal for executive dashboards. HP has two SOCs in the U.S., and five more across Europe and the Asia/Pacific region. HP operations in the Americas and other locations are certified in ISO 27001, ISO 20001 and ISO 9001, and are SAS-70 audited. The HP MSS portal provides role-based access, ticketing and security reporting features. Log management is delivered via HP ArcSight ESM and Logger in hosted or customer premises deployments. Log management features are available via the HP ArcSight portal. HP's targeted attack detection and advanced analytics capabilities are embedded in its MSS offerings, and are supported with threat feeds, vulnerability information, the detection capabilities of HP ArcSight and expert analysis. Enterprise and midsize companies with HP IT services should consider HP for managed security.
- HP is a large, stable provider of MSSs and other security services, with a multiregional presence and delivery capabilities.
- HP has leveraged its security intelligence capabilities — which are developed internally and through product acquisitions — to support the delivery of MSSs.
- The HP MSS portal lacks the security event correlation and reporting capabilities available in competitor portals. Potential customers should validate that enhancement plans meet their deployment and operations requirements.
- MSS buyers seeking stand-alone MSS engagements may need persistence to navigate the large number of security and IT outsourcing services offered by HP.
- Prospective MSS customers should validate current HP offerings and monitor ongoing support for when MSS engagement includes security technologies from HP competitors.
IBM's MSSs are available as a stand-alone service and as a component of larger infrastructure outsourcing. IBM MSSs are delivered with self-developed technology for data collection, correlation, log query and reporting. The portal and ticketing/workflow are also self-developed technologies. The MSS portal includes a logged chat feature with SOC staff. Log management is supported as a hosted service with self-developed technology and with IBM QRadar. Support for customer-deployed SIEM is also available via remote management of IBM's QRadar, as well as HP ArcSight and RSA enVision. IBM has three U.S. SOCs and one Canadian SOC, with six others located in Europe, Asia/Pacific/Japan and South America. IBM SOCs globally are SSAE 16/SAS 70 Type II audited, and the IBM Japan SOC is ISO 27001-certified. IBM's advanced analytics and targeted attack detection capabilities are embedded in its MSS and hosted SIEM offerings. These include the use of IP reputation data, privileged user monitoring, OS event monitoring and application event monitoring available via IBM's self-developed technologies and its QRadar SIEM network monitoring (QFlow), as well as knowledge of the threat landscape and attack indicators. Enterprises with global service delivery requirements, and those with strategic relationships with IBM, should consider IBM for MSSs.
- IBM's capabilities are often known to Gartner customers looking for MSSs, and IBM is included in competitive evaluations by Gartner customers.
- Its MSS capabilities include support for customer-deployed SIEM that is integrated into its standard MSS offerings.
- IBM has global delivery capabilities and is a large, stable service provider for MSS and other IT services.
- Gartner customers note recent improvements in MSS delivery and customer care by IBM. MSS customers and prospects should closely monitor MSS delivery for consistency and quality.
- IBM's MSS supports multiple security technologies, including many from IBM competitors in the IPS and SIEM markets. MSS customers should monitor planned and actual MSS support for their platforms of choice.
Nuspire Networks offers managed security, network gateway and help desk services. Nuspire's MSSs are typically delivered via its own multifunction appliance, but customer-owned technologies are also supported. Nuspire offers endpoint security, log management and rogue wireless detection services. Nuspire delivers MSS via its self-developed technology for data collection, analysis and alerting, reporting, workflow, and management of its MSS devices. Log management is delivered via Nuspire's own technology, or via eIQnetworks, BlackCloud (Netforensics) or SIM One, with hosted and customer premises deployment options available. Log management functions are available via a separate log management portal. Nuspire has one SOC located in the U.S. that is staffed 24/7. It plans a second U.S. SOC by early 2013. There is a partner-run SOC in Latin America. Capabilities to detect targeted attacks are embedded within the MSS offering and include correlation of log events with rogue wireless access detection and matching events with attack scenarios. Buyers that require compliance-oriented MSS at multiple locations (such as branch offices or retail) and include help desk and network services should consider Nuspire.
- Nuspire's MSS can be bundled with network management and other services for customers with limited resources to support multiple vendor relationships for these services.
- Nuspire customers offer positive feedback for effective deployment to a large number of locations across multiple geographic regions, for flexibility to mesh with customer incident response processes, and for ongoing MSS delivery.
- Potential customers with stand-alone firewall and IDS/IPS technologies should validate Nuspire's support for all devices anticipated in scope for MSSs.
- Customers should ensure that Nuspire's road map for adding capabilities to correlate user data in the Trax portal will meet deployment and operations requirements.
Perimeter E-Security focuses on email and MSSs to small and midsize organizations and the financial services vertical. Perimeter's MSS architecture includes commercial SIEM technology for data acquisition, analytics and reporting. Log management is delivered via Alert Logic, a cloud-based provider of log, vulnerability assessment and threat monitoring services. Perimeter has one SOC in North America and a 24/7 Level 1 support center in the Asia/Pacific region. SOC operations undergo SSAE 16 SOC 2 audits, banking regulator annual audit and third-party review, and validation of security controls and policy. A Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) compliance audit is expected to be complete in 1Q13. Finance customers and SMB/midmarket customers seeking compliance and security outsourcing should consider Perimeter.
- Perimeter customers give it strong praise for device management and customer care.
- Perimeter offers an array of compliance-oriented services for organizations subject to banking regulations, PCI and other compliance requirements.
- Perimeter's MSS portal lacks correlation display capabilities, which are available only via a separate services partner portal. Integration to a common portal is planned. Potential buyers should evaluate whether the future road map and timing are adequate for expected needs.
- Perimeter does not appear often in MSS evaluations among Gartner customers. Prospective customers outside of Perimeter's core markets may need to seek out engagement with Perimeter.
SAIC's MSSs are a component of an extensive portfolio of IT outsourcing, system integration and consulting services. SAIC's primary markets include government, critical infrastructure and healthcare. SAIC subsidiary, CloudShield, offers a network security platform to enterprises, telecommunication providers and government customers, and SAIC offers services for CloudShield deployments, as well as integrating, managing and monitoring of a variety of third-party security technologies. SAIC delivers MSSs with a combination of self-developed and commercial technologies. Log and alert collections are done with self-developed appliances. Real-time alerting and correlation, log query and reporting, ticketing, workflow and device management are handled with commercial technologies. Log management is delivered via hosted and CPE deployments of IBM QRadar, HP ArcSight Logger, Splunk and other SIEM products. Access to raw log data is available via the separate log management console. SAIC's MSS operations have been certified by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security as a Trusted Internet Connections (TIC) service provider. Targeted threat protection and advanced analytics are embedded in standard MSS offerings, and are delivered with a combination of commercial technologies, SAIC-developed technologies (such as CloudShield) and internal security expertise. Enterprises with MSS deployments that will involve significant implementation and integration work should consider SAIC's strengths in delivering those services, as well as its ongoing monitoring and log management capabilities.
- SAIC's security services are well-known among Gartner customers in the U.S. federal government market.
- Its MSSs are supported by deep security expertise that includes professional services and security intelligence, as well as threat research.
- SAIC's focus on specific markets and large service deals results in limited visibility for its MSS capabilities among Gartner customers outside those vertical markets.
Solutionary is a pure-play MSSP and security consulting provider. Solutionary's MSS platform is largely self-developed and used for data acquisition, correlation and analysis, and reporting. Commercial technologies are used for device management. Log management is delivered hosted or on-premises with self-developed technology, and access to log management functions are available via the MSS portal. Solutionary will also accept log feeds from customer-deployed SIEMs. Solutionary has two SOCs in the U.S. It undergoes an SSAE 16 Type II audit, a financial oversight audit and customer audits. Targeted attack protection is embedded in the MSS offering and includes IP reputation and location data, as well as statistical and behavioral/profiling analysis. Enterprises and midsize businesses that need flexible and customizable security monitoring, device management and log management services should consider Solutionary.
- Solutionary gets high marks from Gartner customers for flexibility in designing and deploying MSSs, and for strong service delivery.
- It often appears in competitive MSS evaluations by Gartner customers.
- Solutionary's recent investment in greater security and threat intelligence capabilities should result in greater access to those by MSS customers.
- Access to all log data via the MSS portal is still under development. Potential customers should validate that the Solutionary road map for delivering full log access for browsing and query will meet deployment requirements.
- Solutionary is largely a provider of services in the U.S., but it plans further expansion to other regions. MSS customers should monitor service road map commitments during the expansion to ensure timely delivery of promised enhancements.
Symantec provides security monitoring, security management, security intelligence services, messaging security services and a range of security products. Symantec's MSS includes the option of an enterprisewide pricing model for security monitoring services that enables customers to add/remove devices in scope as needed, up to a preset limit.
Symantec's MSS architecture is based on self-developed technology for event and log collection, with a combination of self-developed and commercial technology for correlation, analytics and reporting. Ticketing/workflow and device management are based on commercial technology. Log query and browsing are enabled via self-developed technology. Symantec DeepSight security intelligence and analysis support MSS operations and are available to customers as a component of MSS or as a stand-alone subscription. SOCs are located in the U.S., the U.K., India and Australia, with a SOC planned for Japan by year-end 2012. SOCs are audited for ISO 27001 and SAS-70 Type II/SSAE 16. PCI compliance is planned by year-end 2012. Symantec's role-based portal includes user-created reporting for device logs, asset tagging and logged chat sessions with SOC staff. Log management services are delivered via Symantec Log Collection Platform, stored in Symantec SOCs and available to customers via the MSS portal. Log management services include predefined operations and management reports, as well as PCI and SOX compliance reports. Users can build and share customer queries of the log store. User-created reports are planned by year-end 2012. For customers that have deployed HP ArcSight Logger for select technologies, Symantec can import Common Event Format logs from Logger, and provide access and reporting through the MSS portal. Enterprises seeking an established MSSP should consider using Symantec.
- Symantec's MSS offerings are well-known to Gartner customers, and Symantec often appears in competitive MSS evaluations.
- Symantec's Gartner customers typically offer strong positive reviews of Symantec's MSS delivery and the quality of customer interactions with Symantec's SOC analysts.
- Internal organizational changes at Symantec have resulted in customers experiencing easier procurements of MSS through familiar channels.
- Symantec's enterprisewide pricing options remain challenging for some customers to compare with typical pricing presentations from other MSS vendors. Traditional per-device pricing is still available for MSSs.
- Prospective MSS customers should evaluate whether Symantec's limited security consulting services or partner-led security services will meet their requirements for service initiation and for ongoing project work throughout the course of the MSS relationship.
Trustwave's MSS includes services built around its own security technologies, including unified threat management (UTM), SIEM, network access control, WAF and Web security, as well as third-party technologies. Trustwave's MSS architecture is based on its own technology (some of which is commercially available as Trustwave SIEM [formerly Intellitactics] and other products) for data collection, correlation, alerting and workflow. Security intelligence capabilities are provided by the Trustwave SpiderLabs group. Trustwave has two U.S.-based SOCs and one in Europe, with a SOC scheduled in the Asia/Pacific region by year-end 2012. Targeted attack detection and advanced analytics capabilities are embedded in its MSS via the deployment of file integrity monitoring and managed WAF tuning based on SpiderLabs threat intelligence. Companies in the retail, healthcare and banking verticals — and others that are subject to PCI compliance — should consider Trustwave for MSSs.
- Trustwave's broad range of security products and managed services offers organizations with limited resources access to security technologies and services that address compliance and threat management use cases.
- It remains a well-recognized provider of PCI compliance services.
- Trustwave has services and technologies to support MSSs for decentralized organizations, such as those with extensive branch locations.
- The Trustwave MSS portal includes PCI and general reporting, but not reporting for other compliance regimes. Reports tailored for HIPAA or the U.S. Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act are available through a customer premises appliance managed by Trustwave. Potential MSS customers should evaluate whether the planned addition of tailored compliance reporting beyond PCI meets their deployment time frames and functional requirements.
- Potential MSS buyers should continue to monitor Trustwave's MSS delivery and road map as the company navigates a possible initial public offering.
- The correlation features available in the Trustwave MSS portal are not as rich as those in some competing portals.
Verizon offers a range of telecommunications services. Verizon's security services business, including MSSs and security consulting services, are in the Terremark business unit. Verizon's MSS architecture is based on self-developed technologies that include a local event collector, a correlation and alerting engine, and commercial technologies for reporting, workflow and device management. Log management services are based on a combination of self-developed and commercial technologies.
Verizon SOCs undergo SAS-70 Type II (SSAE 16), ISO 20000 and WebTrust audits, with ISO 9001-2000 and ISO 27001 audits planned. MSS client service managers are ITIL-certified. Verizon is a PCI DSS service provider. Two SOCs are located in the U.S., with additional SOCs in Europe, India and Australia. ICSA Labs provides threat intelligence and malware detection signatures that support MSSs, and Verizon's breach response services inform MSS monitoring efforts. Verizon's MSS portal includes role-based access/reporting capabilities, correlation of network device and user data, and access to raw log data as needed. Correlation of OS and application logs with user data is planned for 2012. Targeted threat detection services are incorporated into the standard MSS delivery. They are based on commercial technologies, Verizon's self-developed correlation and threat intelligence capabilities, and network monitoring. A distinct advance analytics service is available in the U.S. to governments and enterprises facing specific targeted threats. Enterprises looking for an established service provider capable of delivering a broad range of security services in multiple regions should consider Verizon.
- Verizon's MSS portfolio enables customers to deploy MSSs in hybrid configurations that include network-based controls and CPE controls.
- Gartner customers show strong awareness of Verizon's MSSs, and Verizon is often included in competitive MSS evaluations by Gartner customers.
- Verizon's MSS receives generally positive reviews from Gartner customers for meeting expectations for security expertise and for effective security monitoring and alerting.
- Verizon's MSS customers report occasional device management issues, including failure to execute security device management changes to SLA requirements.
- Verizon's log management services are maturing, with additional support for log sources (Windows, Active Directory, Radius and Web servers) and reporting capabilities due by the end of 4Q12. Prospective buyers should evaluate whether the current capabilities and road map for log sources accepted, and the reporting will meet their requirements.
Wipro's MSSs are delivered via on-premises SIEM deployment and remote SOCs for alert management. Wipro offers a wide range of IT management services, as well as security services. Its MSS architecture is based on commercial SIEM technology for event and log collection, correlation, alerting, reporting and workflow, and device management. Log management services are delivered via HP ArcSight, RSA enVision and eIQnetworks SIEM technology. Log management functions are available from a separate portal from MSS functions. Wipro has one SOC in Europe and five SOCs in the Asia/Pacific region. Its MSSs comply with ISO 9001, ISO 27001, ISO 20000 and are subject to customer-specific SAS-70 Type II audits. Wipro's targeted attack and advanced analytics capabilities are embedded in its MSSs, and include DDoS and botnet detection, application and next-generation firewall support, and server monitoring They are supported by threat intelligence and customer-specific SIEM correlation rules. Enterprises looking to augment IT services with MSSs from a trusted incumbent provider should consider Wipro.
- MSS buyers requiring staff augmentation and shared MSSs can take advantage of delivery options that include blended service options.
- Wipro IT service customers can add security management and monitoring from a service provider with which they are already familiar.
- Wipro's focus on account-specific resources to support MSSs, based on a geographically distributed staffing model, may result in uneven service delivery. Customers requiring enhanced analytics of all MSS events across the scope of their deployment should specifically request that capability.
- Prospective MSS customers should establish security-specific SLAs for security monitoring, alerting, escalation and device management, and include remedies.
We review and adjust our inclusion criteria for Magic Quadrants and MarketScopes as markets change. As a result of these adjustments, the mix of vendors in any Magic Quadrant or MarketScope may change over time. A vendor appearing in a Magic Quadrant or MarketScope one year and not the next does not necessarily indicate that we have changed our opinion of that vendor. This may be a reflection of a change in the market and, therefore, changed evaluation criteria, or a change of focus by a vendor.
BT met the criteria for inclusion for number of customers and devices in North America, and has been added to this Magic Quadrant.
CompuCom and Integralis have been dropped from this Magic Quadrant, because they do not meet the inclusion criteria for network devices monitored/managed under MSSs in North America.
The criteria include a threshold for the number of firewall or IDP devices under monitoring or management, and a threshold for the number of North American customers. MSSs refer to remote management and monitoring of security technologies. Several large infrastructure outsourcing vendors offer other service delivery options, such as staff augmentation, in addition to MSSs. We don't evaluate those other delivery options, but we do note when the providers deliver the majority of their security monitoring or management services by those means. Excluded from this analysis are service providers that offer MSSs only as a component of another service offering (such as bandwidth or hosting), and vendors that provide MSSs only for their own technologies and not for third-party technologies.
- The ability to remotely monitor and/or manage firewalls and IDP devices from multiple vendors via discrete service offerings
- More than 1,500 firewall/IDP devices under shared-service remote management or monitoring for external customers
- More than 150 external customers with those devices under management or monitoring
- MSS offerings that are available only to end users that buy other non-MSSs
- Service providers that monitor or manage only their own technology
- Product/service refers to the service capabilities in areas such as event management and alerting, information and log management, incident management, workflow, reporting, and service levels.
- Overall viability includes the organization's financial health, the financial and practical success of the overall company, and the likelihood that the business unit will continue to invest in the MSS offering.
- Sales execution/pricing includes the service provider's success in the MSSP market and its capabilities in presales activities. This includes MSS revenue, pricing and the overall effectiveness of the sales channel. The level of interest from Gartner clients is also considered.
- Market responsiveness and track record evaluates the match of the MSS offering to the functional requirements stated by buyers at acquisition time, and evaluates the MSSP's track record in delivering new functions when they are needed by the market.
- Marketing execution is an evaluation of the service provider's ability to effectively communicate the value and competitive differentiation of its MSS offering to its target buyer.
- Customer experience is an evaluation of service delivery to customers. The evaluation includes ease of deployment, the quality and effectiveness of monitoring and alerting, and reporting and problem resolution. This criterion is assessed by conducting qualitative interviews of vendor-provided reference customers, as well as feedback from Gartner customers that are using the MSSP's services or have completed competitive evaluations of the MSSP's offerings.
- Operations includes the MSSP's service delivery resources, such as infrastructure, staffing and operations reviews or certifications.
Source: Gartner (November 2012)
- Market understanding involves the ability of the MSSP to understand buyers' needs and to translate those needs into services. MSSPs that show the highest degree of market understanding are adapting to customer requirements for specific functional areas and service delivery options.
- Marketing strategy refers to a clear, differentiated set of messages that is consistently communicated throughout the organization; is externalized through the website, advertising, customer programs and positioning statements; and is tailored to the specific client drivers and market conditions in the MSS market.
- Sales strategy relates to the vendor's use of direct and indirect sales, marketing, service, and communications affiliates to extend the scope and depth of market reach.
- Offering (product) strategy is the vendor's approach to product development and delivery that emphasizes functionality and delivery options as they map to current and emerging requirements for MSS. Development plans are also evaluated.
- Business model includes the process and success rate for developing features and innovation, and service delivery capabilities.
- Vertical, industry and geographic strategy includes the ability and commitment to service geographies and vertical markets.
- Innovation refers to the service provider's strategy and ability to develop new MSS capabilities and delivery models to uniquely meet critical customer requirements.
Source: Gartner (November 2012)
Each of the service providers in the Leaders quadrant has significant mind share among enterprises looking to buy an MSS as a discrete offering. These providers generally receive very positive reports on service and performance from Gartner clients. MSSPs in the Leaders quadrant are typically appropriate options for enterprises requiring frequent interaction with the MSSP for analyst expertise and advice, portal-based correlation and workflow support, and flexible reporting options.
Gartner customers are more likely to encounter MSSs offered by an IT or network service provider in the Challengers quadrant as a component of that provider's other telecommunications, outsourcing or consulting services. Although an MSS is not a leading service offering for this type of vendor, it offers a "path of least resistance" to enterprises that need an MSSP and use the vendor's main services. These service providers also represent the largest portion of overall MSSP revenue.
Companies in the Visionaries quadrant have demonstrated the ability to turn a strong focus on managed security into high-quality service offerings for the MSS market. These service providers are often strong contenders for enterprises requiring frequent interaction with MSS analysts, flexible service delivery options and strong customer service. MSSPs in the Visionaries quadrant have less market coverage and fewer resources or service options compared with vendors in the Leaders quadrant.
Niche Players are characterized by service offerings that are available primarily in specific market segments or primarily as part of other service offerings. These service providers often tailor MSS offerings to specific requirements of the markets they serve.
The global economic environment continues to drive North American businesses to limit hiring and increase demand for managed services. MSSs are mature, but buyers must carefully define the scope and depth of the services required, and assess the delivery capabilities and options available from providers. Enterprises that optimize their use of MSSPs can free up internal staff time to respond to more-business-critical security functions if they select MSSP services that can support and complement internal security operations.
Drivers for MSS adoption in North America remain similar to prior years. SMBs are primarily buying MSSs to meet compliance requirements, although threat management and improved security awareness are often secondary goals. Enterprises typically focus on threat management and adding access security expertise via MSSs. Drivers for buyers of all sizes include an inability to increase head count, greater acceptance of outsourcing IT activities, and the need to implement additional security technologies, controls or use cases, such as log collection, data security and virtual device security. A smaller group of buyers, primarily those with mature security programs, are evaluating MSS capabilities for advanced analytics to address targeted attack detection and prevention, although all customers will realize benefits from MSSPs with effective capabilities to address targeted attacks. Gartner expects continued growth in the stronger incumbent MSSPs, as well as the entry of additional MSSPs as IT service providers add security monitoring capabilities to their service offerings.
Gartner expects that growing enterprise experience with SaaS, as well as enabling more access of consumer-grade technology to corporate systems, will result in greater acceptance of, and reliance on, cloud-based security-as-a-service offerings. These services will grow faster than the market for remotely monitored CPE MSS through 2012 on a percentage basis, but starting from a smaller base. New security-as-a-service-based offerings addressing specific security controls for cloud-based IT resources will be available from larger IT and network service providers during the next 24 months, with SMBs as the initial target market. Gartner predicts that smaller, pure-play MSSPs will be most affected by the introduction of these services, and we anticipate consolidation of smaller, pure-play MSSPs in the market.
In 2011, MSSPs realized North American revenue of $2.7 billion, up from $2.3 billion in 2010. We predict MSS revenue will have grown to $3.0 billion in 2012. Growth in enterprise demand for MSSs is driven primarily by five factors:
- Staffing and budget constraints: Gartner sees continued expectations to reduce operational costs and capital expenditures, and avoid staffing increases, while maintaining a sufficient security posture and meeting compliance mandates.
- Evolving compliance reporting requirements: Compliance reporting requirements continue to contribute in almost every MSS engagement. This is a result of the evolution of existing compliance requirements and of corporate governance policies that create a secondary effect of stronger requirements for incident monitoring, identification and response among an business partners and suppliers. As formal compliance regimes evolve or audit/enforcement activity increases, organizations consider external service providers to reduce the costs of meeting compliance requirements. The primary driver remains the PCI DSS, but Gartner is starting to see FISMA continuous monitoring requirements become an increasing factor for government agencies, commercial firms that that sell to the government, and organizations funded by government grants, such as universities.
- Expansion of Internet connection points: Enterprises continue to enable local Internet connectivity for remote offices. This increasing complexity drives MSS demand for firewalls and UTM devices, as well as for network-based firewall, IPS and security gateways as service offerings.
- Increased availability and adoption of cloud-based IT services: Increasing enterprise use of cloud-based IT services will drive security controls into those services. Increasing adoption and familiarity of cloud-based services will also lead to greater acceptance and adoption of cloud-based security services for controls that are best suited for cloud-based delivery. Gartner predicts significant growth in security outsourcing in areas adjacent to MSS, such as secure Web gateways, email security, and identity and access management.
- SMBs have limited security resources: Smaller organizations typically have fewer internal security resources but must meet security requirements imposed by business partners and by regulatory compliance regimes. This market segment is a target for MSSPs that already have substantial enterprise business, as well as for smaller MSSPs focused on supporting specific regulatory requirements.
In addition to the core services of monitoring and managing firewall and IDSs/IPSs, MSSPs now offer a range of additional managed services, such as:
- Multifunction firewall/UTM services
- Next-generation firewalls
- Data loss prevention services
- SIM services or log management
MSSPs report several services that they describe as cloud or SaaS-based services. These include:
- DDoS protection
- Email security
- Web filtering
- Vulnerability scanning
- Network-based firewall/IDP
- Log management
- Management and monitoring or customer-deployed SIEM technology
Cloud services are offered organically or via partnerships with other service providers. The degree of integration of partner-delivered services with MSSP services varies from little more than purchasing convenience to integration of partner data and management functionality into the MSSP's portal.
Buyers should take into consideration the degree of integration of any partner-delivered services with the MSSP's offering, and the potential for affecting training, operational efficiency and end-of-contract switching costs.
The Emergence and Challenges of Advanced Analytics
The growth of targeted attacks that bypass signature-based security controls, employ sophisticated techniques to spread and evade detection and eradication, and often result in compromise of critical systems will drive new capabilities in MSSs. In some cases, these capabilities will be only indirectly visible to customers, such as greater log storage capacity, more advanced analytics for the SOC analysts, increase in true-positive events and reduction in false-positive events for investigation. Other capabilities will likely be sold as additional services, with SLAs related to establishing baseline conditions or patterns, and identifying expectations and deviations from those, rather than of fast alerting based on real-time monitoring.
Customers should anticipate very visible effects in two areas — new types of incidents identified by the MSSP that will require a response by customers, and the need to involve domain experts outside the security group. In the first case, there may be an initial increase in workload for customer security staff as they assess and respond to new kinds of incidents. In the latter case, the security staff may need to establish operating agreements with IT operations organizations and line of business owners. Customers should plan to establish proof-of-concept or pilot projects to fully understand the benefits and costs related to advanced analytic services.
Pricing and Evolving MSS Requirements
The typical pricing model for MSSs is based on the type and size of the security technology to be monitored for CPE-based devices, or the bandwidth or number of users/endpoints for network-based controls. Device management pricing is typically based on the number of configuration changes to be performed within a period of time.
Several developments are causing MSSPs to explore different pricing models and delivery capabilities:
- Log management for compliance reporting: This can involve accepting logs for many data sources, including those with tenuous relations to real-time alerting. Customers should expect those log sources to be priced at a lower cost than real-time alerting sources.
- Virtualization in the IT environment: Customers can quickly create (and remove) assets in the IT infrastructure that may be in the scope of the MSSP's monitoring or management. MSS buyers should evaluate an MSSP's ability to support a streamlined process for adding and removing log and real-time alert sources.
- Cloud-based IT: MSSPs must work with cloud service providers to enable provisioning of MSSs and the collection and analysis of data from the cloud environment on behalf of MSS customers. MSSPs that are also cloud infrastructure providers will have an opportunity to provide those services to customers of their own clouds, but may have difficulty working with competitor cloud providers. Buyers should evaluate the capabilities of an MSSP to support monitoring for cloud-based infrastructure services.
- Flexible coverage requirements from customers: Gartner customers express increasing interest in using services to support the operations of a deployed SIEM technology. Support requirements may range from full-time staff augmentation to full-time remote management to flexible, part-time staff or remote support. The complexity of the SIEM deployments varies greatly by the amount of data collected, the number of alerts generated and the reports required.
Gartner expects MSSPs to develop more flexible on-demand and usage-based pricing to accommodate these situations. To be accepted by the market, these options must make it easier for customers to tailor the MSSs to their requirements, without adding effort in the form of documentation, billing problems or gaps in coverage. The MSSP must also make the details of the service it provides (such as the number of data sources, the amount of data collected or monitored, and so forth) easy for the customer to understand and validate.
During 2012-2013, Gartner expects that per-unit pricing for common services, such as firewall and IDP monitoring and management, will continue to decline slightly. Price pressure comes from new sources for these services, as we have described, as well as from continued corporate efforts to reduce IT budgets. MSSPs will continue to try to expand the number of devices and data sources to monitor and differentiate monitoring based on the availability of additional external data feeds, such as reputation data, blacklists, behavioral data and cross-customer activity that can be correlated with data from a customer's monitored devices.
The basic makeup of the MSSP vendor space has not changed fundamentally. There are three major types of MSSPs:
- Pure plays: Generally smaller, privately held MSSPs that are completely focused on security services. Pure-play MSSPs that grow rapidly will continue to be acquired by larger service or IT infrastructure firms seeking to provide MSSs. New entrants of pure-play MSSPs tend to be focused on specific vertical market segments and on customers subject to specific regulatory requirements.
- System integrators/business process outsourcers: Broad IT service providers that typically manage security devices as part of larger outsourcing deals. Where the integrator or outsourcer acquired a pure-play MSSP and maintained a discrete MSS delivery capability, these providers often compete for MSS-only deals.
- Carriers and network service providers. Bandwidth and connectivity providers that manage network security products and often provide remote monitoring premises-based technologies and cloud-based services through their Internet connections.
In general, the MSS portfolios of these providers look broadly similar. Gartner customers using MSSPs express differing expectations regarding the type of relationship with MSSPs and the provider's ability to meet them. Expectations may range from frequent interaction and knowledge sharing among customer security staff and MSSP staff, to almost no interaction beyond the provision of periodic reports of monitoring activity. Gartner recommends that prospective MSS buyers develop explicit requirements for service delivery. It is in the MSSP responses to these requirements that customers will be able to discern distinct differences among MSSPs. Buyers should define expectations for the degree and quality of interaction with the MSSP's SOC analysts, the features of the MSSP's portal that will support the customer's use cases, reporting for operational and management reporting, the depth of threat and security intelligence offerings, support for specific compliance requirements, and the MSSP's professional services capabilities. Prospective buyers that evaluate MSSPs in the context of specific requirements will find that the providers that best fit those requirements may come from any segment of the Magic Quadrant.
Not included in this Magic Quadrant analysis are smaller, subregional providers, which can include small pure plays and larger providers that do not have enough MSS business in North America to meet the criteria for inclusion, such as CompuCom and Integralis. Excluded from this analysis are service providers that provide MSSs only for their own technology, and do not deliver services for commercial technology. Other vendors not evaluated in this Magic Quadrant are Sprint, which offers network-based services to its telecommunications customers, and StillSecure and Alert Logic, which offer log management, monitoring and vulnerability management services built around their own technologies. Exclusion of these service providers from coverage in the MSSP Magic Quadrant is not an indication of the quality of their services. It is based on the inclusion criteria we have developed for the Magic Quadrant analysis.
This analysis is based on (1) interactions with Gartner customers during inquiries and meetings related to their understanding of MSS providers, offerings, and experiences with services delivery and account management; (2) surveys of MSSP providers for initial inclusion criteria and detailed services descriptions; (3) reference checks through telephone calls and surveys regarding MSS selection and performance; and (4) periodic briefings from MSSPs.
Ability to Execute
Product/Service: Core goods and services offered by the vendor that compete in/serve the defined market. This includes current product/service capabilities, quality, feature sets and skills, whether offered natively or through OEM agreements/partnerships, as defined in the market definition and detailed in the subcriteria.
Overall Viability (Business Unit, Financial, Strategy, Organization): Viability includes an assessment of the overall organization's financial health, the financial and practical success of the business unit, and the likelihood of the individual business unit to continue investing in the product, to continue offering the product and to advance the state of the art within the organization's portfolio of products.
Sales Execution/Pricing: The vendor's capabilities in all presales activities and the structure that supports them. This includes deal management, pricing and negotiation, presales support, and the overall effectiveness of the sales channel.
Market Responsiveness and Track Record: Ability to respond, change direction, be flexible and achieve competitive success as opportunities develop, competitors act, customer needs evolve and market dynamics change. This criterion also considers the vendor's history of responsiveness.
Marketing Execution: The clarity, quality, creativity and efficacy of programs designed to deliver the organization's message in order to influence the market, promote the brand and business, increase awareness of the products, and establish a positive identification with the product/brand and organization in the minds of buyers. This mind share can be driven by a combination of publicity, promotional, thought leadership, word-of-mouth and sales activities.
Customer Experience: Relationships, products and services/programs that enable clients to be successful with the products evaluated. Specifically, this includes the ways customers receive technical support or account support. This can also include ancillary tools, customer support programs (and the quality thereof), availability of user groups and SLAs.
Operations: The ability of the organization to meet its goals and commitments. Factors include the quality of the organizational structure, including skills, experiences, programs, systems and other vehicles that enable the organization to operate effectively and efficiently on an ongoing basis.
Completeness of Vision
Market Understanding: Ability of the vendor to understand buyers' wants and needs and to translate those into products and services. Vendors that show the highest degree of vision listen and understand buyers' wants and needs, and can shape or enhance those with their added vision.
Marketing Strategy: A clear, differentiated set of messages consistently communicated throughout the organization and externalized through the website, advertising, customer programs and positioning statements.
Sales Strategy: The strategy for selling product that uses the appropriate network of direct and indirect sales, marketing, service and communication affiliates that extend the scope and depth of market reach, skills, expertise, technologies, services and the customer base.
Offering (Product) Strategy: The vendor's approach to product development and delivery that emphasizes differentiation, functionality, methodology and feature set as they map to current and future requirements.
Business Model: The soundness and logic of the vendor's underlying business proposition.
Vertical/Industry Strategy: The vendor's strategy to direct resources, skills and offerings to meet the specific needs of individual market segments, including verticals.
Innovation: Direct, related, complementary and synergistic layouts of resources, expertise or capital for investment, consolidation, defensive or pre-emptive purposes.
Geographic Strategy: The vendor's strategy to direct resources, skills and offerings to meet the specific needs of geographies outside the "home" or native geography, either directly or through partners, channels and subsidiaries, as appropriate for that geography and market.