Professional services companies are aligning with security and systems management suppliers to enhance existing products and buffer customers' hesitancy toward security outsourcing.
Analysts said the role of outsourcers is shifting to a complimentary but necessary component as customers struggle to assume greater control of security management and business processes.
Systems integrator Deloitte & Touche, for instance, has joined forces with Tivoli Systems to bolster quick-start provisioning and identity management.
Electronic Data Systems and Unisys have partnered with BBX Technologies to help integrate the security newcomer's ImmuneEngine intrusion-prevention software.
A brand-name, third-party services presence behind security offerings can help allay end-user concerns over lingering technical issues, including customisation, project management, complexity of integration, and data recollection issues, said Gartner analyst Roberta Witty said.
"A lot of companies aren't willing to relinquish this type of security activity to a hoster," Witty noted. "There is a lot of [need for] business-process reengineering. That is where I see a big systems integrator coming in."
Witty said system integrations can play a vital role to not only change business processes and politics, but also carry the technical expertise to blend a heterogeneous infrastructure with multiple security tools.
Next week, Deloitte & Touche will unveil ID Accelerator, a services and software package to help customers ramp up a user provisioning strategy and platform. ID Accelerator is powered by Tivoli Identity Manager software and Deloitte & Touche'si-MAAP (identity-Management, Authentication, Authorization, and Protection) identity management services
Tivoli director of security strategy Jeff Drake said: "The problem with a lot of security solutions is there is no ROI, it's a fear sale. 'If you don't do these things then bad things will happen to you.
"Either services or technologies, you need some quick bang for your buck or you're not going to have another demonstration."
Professional services players are working to broaden customers' transition to a security management framework which shies away from a compartmentalised view of attacking specific security areas, such as provisioning, access management, and director services, separately.
System integrators are also infiltrating the highly competitive landscape of intrusion prevention and malicious code protection.
BBX Technologies unveiled its ImmuneEngine software at Demo 2003 late last month. The product creates an audit log to track executables anywhere on a Microsoft system. If the writing of an illegal executable is detected, ImmuneEngine pushes it off and deletes it from the memory stack.
The product features a workstation version and another version for servers to protect directories and web folders to combat website defacing. BBX recruited EDS for its integration muscle, as well as to soon allow SNMP output from its management server to be picked up by system management software, such as Hewlett-Packard OpenView and Computer Associates Unicenter.