H-P and F5 step up security efforts, target growing markets

|By:, SA News Editor

Looking to challenge Cisco (CSCO +0.3%), Check Point (CHKP +0.9%), and market leader Palo Alto Networks (PANW +1.1%) in the growing next-gen firewall (NGFW) hardware market, H-P (HPQ -0.4%) has launched its TippingPoint NGFW line. (PR)

Five models are being offered, the most powerful of which offers 10Gbps of throughput. Palo Alto's high-end PA-5060 firewall offers 20Gbps of throughput. Though H-P plans to continue selling TippingPoint intrusion prevention (IPS) appliances, the functionality of its new hardware leads Gartner's Greg Young to view the latter as a replacement for the former.

Young estimates NGFWs have grown to make up 15% of the $8B firewall market.

H-P is also launching Threat Central, a cloud-based service that analyzes potential threats detected by the company's ArcSight security software.

Consider the moves an escalation of H-P's rivalry with Cisco. Cisco is set to acquire IPS leader Sourcefire, which has also rolled out hardware that combines NGFW and IPS features, and recently formed a managed security services unit.

Meanwhile, F5 (FFIV +0.8%) has acquired Versafe, a developer of online fraud protection software and a cloud-based monitoring service, for an undisclosed sum. F5 declares Versafe's products will complement its firewall and access/policy management hardware, as well as its mobile app management software.

Versafe can already be integrated with F5's mainstay application delivery controllers. In a blog post discussing the deal, F5 argues the ongoing rise of remote/mobile file access increases Versafe's value.

H-P and F5's moves comes amid growing corporate interest in cybersecurity, following well-publicized hacking events.