The evolution of Managed Security - From technology service to business solution

The current managed security market is expected to continue to grow rapidly over the coming years – recent Allied Market Research reports estimated a global market size of €13bn by the end of 2015, rising to an estimated €27bn by 2020 – equating to 16% year-on-year growth over that period.

In our previous blog “Four reasons organizations are making the move to Managed Security” we examined the source of this move and the reasons many organizations were citing for making the move to an “outsourced” or “managed” model. 

Today, following research from our team of consultants, we’re taking a high level look at this growing market that no IT security department can ignore.

Download the detailed report “A commercial perspective on outsourced Managed Security Solutions”

Originally a technology service

Over the past decade the market has undergone a significant evolution. 

First generation managed services focused on technology support for legacy security technologies, such as:

  • Firewalls
  • Unified Threat Management (UTM)
  • Anti-virus (AV)
  • Intrusion detection and prevention (IDS/IPS)
  • Identity and Access Management (IAM) 
  • Log Management systems 

More recently, “next-gen” technologies have been added around areas such as cloud and mobile security, threat intelligence support and next generation SIEM.

A common trend at this stage was the technology-centric focus, focusing on providing one or more point security solutions that supported an existing in-house security capability. 

In this approach, the service provider takes responsibility for the operation of specific technologies, but overall accountability still remained with the service buyer and their in-house team who had to co-ordinate them into their overall security management system. 

This approach was core to the traditional Managed Security “Services” model.

The shift to a business solution

Nowadays, this technology centric managed services approach is being replaced by a more holistic “solutions” approach to outsourced security management. 

This is a response to security no longer being a problem discussed in technology terms at an IT level, but a high-priority risk area discussed and resolved at board level.

Hence, the client need is no longer around solving a technology gap or need, but around solving risks existing at the broader business level. 

To provide such support, outsourced security providers meet such needs by combining security professional services (consulting, advisory, security risk management and testing etc.) alongside technical service support for a wide range of silo technologies. 

This shift is significant, as responsibility and accountability under this new approach moves from buyer to provider, with the solutions provider measured with both technical SLAs as well as business-level KPIs.

An overview of the MSS evolution

  Managed Security "Services" Managed Security "Solutions"
Problem Statement


“Find us the best security technology in category X, configure and manage it for us as a service, provide us periodic reports and alerts”





“Detect new malware and threats (known & unknown)”

“Protect our perimeter”

“Manage breaches and incidents”“Secure our use of the cloud”

Solution Silo technologies “as a service” – both traditional and next gen “As a service” technologies plus security professional services wrap
Focus Technical needs at IT level Business risks at board level
Performance KPIs Technology-focused SLAs such as: uptime, availability, time to recovery, etc.

Business KPIs – 

“risk reduction by €X”

“less than X breaches”

“respond to all incidents within X minutes”

Alongside technology focused SLAs as before

Accountability Remains with service buyer Accountability pushed to service provider

Full details of this research as well as a detailed look at Managed Security Solutions can be found in our whitepaper: "A commercial perspective on outsourced Managed Security Solutions"