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Gartner: Antivirus is biggest security expense

Customers are getting more demanding, while security market is seeing a gradual consolidation around fewer players.

Spending on security software across Europe is expected to top 2.4 billion euros ($3.3 billion) this year, with antivirus software continuing to form the largest slice of the pie.

Antivirus software will account for more than 50 percent of the total security software revenue market in 2007, according to the calculations by analyst Gartner.

Organizations are getting more sophisticated in the way they choose security products, and technical evaluations are now common practice, the analyst firm said. Customers also want to deal with a smaller number of vendors that can supply products that work well together.

Gartner principal research analyst Ruggero Contu said that traditionally, the security software market has been dominated by "best-of-needs" vendors, but the market is now starting to see a gradual consolidation around fewer players.

However, Contu added that security is becoming more complex and difficult for a single vendor to handle. "Customers require products that integrate with their security architecture rather than disconnected-point solutions," he said in a statement.

Steve Ranger of reported from London.