Like most who attend RSA, I set a goal for myself to walk through the North and South exhibit halls and stop by every booth to “keep up” with the latest messaging and capabilities across the cyber landscape. I started off the day optimistic and full of enthusiasm. This year, I decided to keep track of the booths I visited even if it was just for a brief few seconds. I went to 287 booths in the North Hall and 279 in the South Hall. That’s right: I counted and hit 566 booths in a little over three hours.
What did I learn from this year’s event? Aside from the latest industry buzzwords and jargon, — threat sharing, machine learning, AI, data lakes, SOC automation, attack surface discovery and exploitation — every vendor sounded the same, and you had to go beyond the surface level to find out how they differentiate themselves.
I left disappointed that not once did I hear a vendor talk about helping customers by focusing on their desired outcomes, value and service level agreements.
Our marketing team recently released the following data points, which I believe are telling of where we are as an industry.
More than 1,200 vendors compete in the cybersecurity market today. Conservatively, if each vendor offers an average of three products, with each product carrying an average of five features, that would make the cybersecurity market replete with nearly 20,000 features.
There is no shortage of competition for features in our industry. Look at most cybersecurity vendor websites and you’ll find lots of content around product capabilities. It’s no wonder customers are under assault by relentless adversaries. Each new threat vector requires a new defensive technology, which typically takes the form of a new product (if not a new vendor), complete with its own set of features.
That’s why McAfee focuses on sound architectural principles when designing modernized cybersecurity environments. We provide an open, proactive and intelligent architecture to protect data and stop threats from device to cloud. This allows customers to onboard new defensive technologies quickly to maximize their effectiveness. And, with our open, integrated approach, customers benefit from an overall security system with a whole greater than the sum of its parts. They get the benefit of both worlds: abundant vendor choice within a unified, cohesive system.
RSA 2019 Goals: Find vendors who are talking about solving customer challenges by focusing on outcomes, architecture interoperability, efficacy and efficiencies with some service level agreements mixed in for good measure. I really believe McAfee is setting a new higher standard for the cyber landscape that is essential and meaningful to our customers and the partner ecosystem. Let’s see if anybody else does something similar (or, if anybody else follows suit, or something like that).