Our November issue celebrates the Information Security Readers' Choice Award winners of 2014. This year several newcomers earned top scores alongside familiar names such as Dell, Cisco Systems, McAfee and Qualys. The competition in most categories was formidable and the winners topped an impressive group of highly rated technologies.
The security industry has come under fire as high-profile breaches lead many to wonder why a $67 billion technology and services industry doesn't perform as advertised. Yet, like the feats of chief information security officers, when security products and services perform well their triumphs are often invisible. It's the failures that get amplified -- even though, botched security frequently results from IT deployment issues, improper device and policy configurations, failure to update or use key functionality, and a lack of trained personnel and resources.
Most organizations keep the inner workings of their security programs, including the security and risk management technology, under wraps. Yet, security technology investment remains an ongoing challenge for enterprises. Independent evaluations of security tools and their effectiveness beyond point solutions are hard to find.
Vendors are introducing more cloud-based security services and protection "suites" as some products become commoditized. Compilations of security tools and services, often driven by mergers and acquisitions, make it hard for enterprises to figure out what some products offer and how these security bundles will improve their overall risk postures.
We take a unique approach to our Readers' Choice Awards and ask Information Security readers and SearchSecurity.com members to vote only on the products in use in their respective organizations, with the goal of recognizing technologies and services that perform at the highest levels. More than 1,700 voters weighed in and helped us award this year's top security technologies in 22 categories. We added three categories in 2014 to reflect momentous product areas -- Denial of Service, Threat Intelligence and Wireless Network Security.
The winning products, according to voters, are a step above the rest in key areas such as return on investment; event correlation, logging and reporting; granularity and flexible policy definition; integration and extensibility; ease of configuration, installation and administration; and vendor service and support.
We congratulate the 2014 Information Security Readers' Choice Award winners! Check out the winning technologies for each category, and let us know if your top security products made the cut. Send comments on this column to firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the author:
Kathleen Richards is the features editor of Information Security magazine. Follow her on Twitter @RichardsKath.