JOHANNESBURG – Security-a-a-Service (SECaaS) is not an entirely new concept; people have been talking about it since as far back as 2014. On paper, the benefits seem to be extensive, but what are they and do they translate for local businesses?

SECaaS can be defined as outsourcing your security measures to a third-party cloud service provider. This means that your security services are now delivered via a web browser, and not locally through an internal IT department; saving on upfront hardware costs and ensuring that your software is continually kept up-to-date.

SECaaS promises to comprehensively arm companies of all sizes with the tools they’ll be needing to protect themselves from harmful cyberattacks (including ransom-, spy- and malware), which is predicted, by IDG, to cause up to $6 trillion worth of damage by 2021 globally.

“And while cyber-based SECaaS may be a more obvious offering, this type of technology also allows businesses to outsource physical security requirements – including access control and video surveillance for example,” states Sven Smit, portfolio director at Specialised Exhibitions a division of Montgomery Group.

“With the growing accessibility of cloud computing, the ‘X-as-a-Service’ approach is gaining popularity for businesses of all sizes,” he adds. “It has also become clear that SECaaS in particular is especially suitable for the small businesses that form the backbone of South Africa’s entrepreneurial landscape.”

A recent Memeburn articlesays the SECaas model is “quite possibly the best thing to happen to the SME since high-speed broadband. They can select the products they want, when they want.” It says, in the past a selection was a permanent investment, today they can try it out, see if it fits, and move on. The flexibility of SECaaS means they can change the solution when it doesn’t work for them.

SMEs aside though, research company Gartner expounds the virtues of SECaaS, stating that, while the overall adoption of cloud computing is growing, SECaaS in particular is set to boom. The organisation stated that, by 2020, 85 percent of large enterprises will use a cloud access security broker solution for their cloud services, up from less than five percent in 2015, and that the SECaaS market will exceed $8.5 billion, growing at a 22.2 percent Compound Annual Growth Rate from last year’s $3.12 billion.

A Persistence Market Research study looks even further into the future, saying that SECaaS will arise as the de facto business model on many networks, as it doubles in size again to $16.5 billion by 2026.

The reasons for the uptake could be based on economic factors, says Smit. “SECaaS offers a portfolio of prevention, detection and resolution services and it does this in a budget-friendly manner.”

“Business are empowered in purchasing only the ‘cover’ they need to address their specific requirements, and they can do so using OpEx as opposed to CapEx budgets. Then, specifically for those companies using products from numerous vendors, this approach offers access to expertise from ISPs who are trained across all product sets and are solely focussed on keeping the business secure and security protocols current.”

“This frees up internal IT staff to focus on helping achieve core business objectives rather than running from pillar to post in an attempt to address thousands of potential threats.”

“Having said that, it seems widely understood, globally, that opting for a SECaaS solution is the way forward and when the benefits are weighed and measured, we have no doubt local businesses will be following suit,” says Smit.

Interested in hearing more on the latest trends in both physical and cybersecurity? Visitors to Securex South Africa 2019, Africa’s leading security and fire trade exhibition, will have access to a host of security experts and several seminar opportunities that should help shine a light on what’s happening within this sector.

Securex South Africa 2019 will take place at Gallagher Convention Centre from 14 to 16 May 2019, and is co-located with A-OSH EXPO, Africa’s leading occupational safety and health trade exhibition, as well as – for the very first time – Facilities Management Expo 2019, the show that brings together all aspects of facilities management.

Visitors are able to register for attendance at no cost by visiting, gaining access to all three shows.

Registration Is Open