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by Dave Gradijan

Philippine Firms to Face New Security Threats

Jun 26, 20063 mins
CSO and CISOData and Information Security

Security is expected to be more complicated as new technologies become complex—and Filipino companies may not be ready for such complications.

“Tomorrow’s infrastructure will be more complex as we move up the technology chain,” said Manuel Ravago, research manager at International Data Corporation (IDC) Philippines, during the “Dynamic Resilience: Security and Continuity 2006” conference organized by IDC recently.

Ravago said that in today’s Internet era, security is still more or less manageable, but we are also already grappling with threats. However, as technology advances—such as radio frequency identification and invisible computing—security will be more complicated, he added.

“IT is becoming more and more indispensable; clients are expecting more from you at a shorter time, and IT is one of the tools that help you address these needs,” Ravago told an audience of chief information officers and IT managers.

As customers become more demanding and their thresholds for error become less, Ravago said companies need to make sure that they are providing clients with the best service—and that means little or no downtime. “Security strategies need to be increasingly dynamic and always changing in order to respond to sophisticated threats,” he added.

“The trend in the Philippines shows that the country is still lagging behind; there is still a need to increase awareness on the importance of security solutions,” said Ravago.

Intrusion prevention systems (IPS), for one, is still a relatively new thing for the Philippines, added Ken Low, security lead for 3Com Asia Pacific and a speaker at the IDC conference. “This is why 3Com is committed to invest in raising awareness about security, especially among decision-makers,” he added.

IPS is a technology that 3Com is pushing that, unlike intrusion detection systems (IDS), not only detects but also prevents attacks. “What’s the point of detecting attacks when you can’t stop them?” said Low. Readiness in terms of intrusion-prevention adoption is still the main issue in the Philippines; most companies today still believe they are secure with a firewall and an antivirus, said the security expert from 3Com.

The only solution is to educate the users, Low said, adding that the company is focusing on several key industries that it feels are the biggest markets for security, namely universities, financial organizations and banks, and the government.

“The government is a key market for security; we intend to push this sector,” said Low. In a previous 3Com press conference, 3Com reported that several government websites were hacked and defaced several times last year, which is why the company is also keen on pushing its solutions in that sector.

Other than the universities, manufacturing and financial sectors being the earliest adopters of IPS in the country, Low said telecommunication and business process outsourcing companies may be big markets that are already slowly adopting the technology.

“Telcos, however, are not as quick adopters because they often do not take much responsibility for security unless they are in the managed security services,” added Low.

“There is still a lot of confusion in the market as to what security solutions they need; we still very much need to educate them,” he concluded.

By Jenalyn M. Rubio, Computerworld Philippines

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