Symantec, McAfee, Trend fighting a losing battle; it’s the data that matters
Traditional security vendors are approaching data and end point protection in the wrong way, according to Art Wong, the new CEO of IronKey.
Speaking to CBR at InfoSec 2011 at Earls Court, Wong suggested that protecting the device itself is not necessary, as what is important is the data itself and the way it is transferred.
"There are new threats evolving in the market, threats that, to be honest, companies like Symantec, McAfee and Trend Micro just don’t protect against," Wong told CBR. "When you’re talking about protection and AV at the end point to protect the device itself… it’s a lost battle. You’re never going to be able to secure against zero-day threats and other attacks in an adequate way."
Wong says that IronKey’s technology is about, "obfuscating the need to protect the end point on its own. We’re looking at protecting the data when it’s being transported and providing the trusted access between two points."
Wong believes focusing on securing the end point, as the big guns tend to do, is not the right approach as that is not where the value of a mobile device lies.
"It’s not that other security vendors don’t do this, it’s that they can’t," Wong said. "They’re protecting the wrong thing. There’s no doubt that the end point has to be protected, but it’s a losing battle and not one that we’re in. All those companies have a very large end point protection business but the value we provide is around securing a trusted access point between two partners. We feel that is more important than protecting the device itself. It’s really the data and the access to it that is critical."
To coincide with InfoSec, the security industry’s annual UK shindig, the company released the results of a survey in to data breaches in the UK. While 31% of respondents claimed to have suffered at least one cyber attack in the last 12 months, 45% believed their organisation is a target of organised cyber crime which could result in the theft of data or money, the survey claimed.
When it comes to perceived threats to a business, the focus is very much on internal issues. Over half (54%) of respondents said accidental data leakage by staff, contractors or vendors was the biggest threat. Just 10% listed an external attack on their network as a threat and 13% said they feared the threat from Trojans.
Wong joined IronKey in January this year, replacing founder and CEO Dave Jevans, who remains with the company as chairman. Wong had previously worked at Symantec and McAfee.