Definition

Security as a Service (SaaS)

What is security-as-a-service (SaaS)?

Security-as-a-service (SaaS) is an outsourcing model for security management. Typically, Security as a Service involves applications such as anti-virus software delivered over the Internet but the term can also refer to security management provided in-house by an external organization.

Security-as-a-Service offers a number of benefits, including:

  • Constant virus definition updates that are not reliant on user compliance.
  • Greater security expertise than is typically available within an organization.
  • Faster user provisioning.
  • Outsourcing of administrative tasks, such as log management, to save time and money and allow an organization to devote more time to its core competencies.
  • A Web interface that allows in-house administration of some tasks as well as a view of the security environment and on-going activities.

Internet-based security (sometimes referred to as cloud security) products are a segment of the Software as a Service (SaaS) market. Gartner predicted that cloud-based security controls for messaging applications (such as anti-malware and anti-spam programs) would generate 60% of the revenue in that industry sector by 2013, up from 20% in 2008.

Security as a Service product vendors include Cisco, McAfee, Panda Software, Symantec, Trend Micro and VeriSign.

This was last updated in August 2010
Posted by: Margaret Rouse

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