The need to protect networks from virus attacks and other content threats is encouraging enterprises to adopt content filtering solutions. This is now one of the fastest-growing markets in the security arena, according to a new report from Frost & Sullivan.
However, the survey also says that the principal reason for using content filtering in the future is expected to be its ability to increase productivity, and therefore reduce costs.
At the same time, content filters are increasingly being regarded as a way of evading costly lawsuits, by helping companies support the legitimate use of the internet for business purposes while disclaiming responsibility for employees accessing offensive material at the workplace.
To date, the highest demand for content filtering has been seen in Western Europe, but by 2010, the EMEA market is expected to be worth approximately $1,054.2m. Widespread press coverage of internet misuse coupled with content filtering solutions in local English and German languages have contributed to particularly strong uptake in the United Kingdom and Germany, which is creating a clear case for solutions to be developed in other languages and markets.
The report concludes that the almost continuous appearance of new types of content threats is poised to boost the prospects of participants with innovative solutions.
Established security vendors can leverage this situation by incorporating content filtering capabilities into their product lines either through in-house initiatives or the acquisition of a dedicated content filtering vendor. However, a key challenge for the future centres on the over-effectiveness of filtering technology where even sites that have educational value may be indiscriminately filtered out.
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