Network security spending 'slow but steady'

As fears persist over the damage viruses can do to corporate data, investment in network security continues.

Sales of network security appliances and software rose 15 percent worldwide to $4.3 billion during 2005, according to market researcher Infonetics Research. During the fourth quarter of the year, however, the market rose only 3 percent.

Jeff Wilson, principal analyst at Infonetics Research, said the fourth quarter didn't have "its usual seasonal bump" because some businesses are looking into solutions such as network access control and content security before spending on core network security. Cisco Systems led the integrated software market in 2005, with just over a third of the market, followed by Check Point Software with 10 percent and Juniper Networks with 8 percent. Looking to the future, the network security market should see modest, steady growth of 32 percent to $5.7 billion in 2009, according to Infonetics.

Sylvia Carr of Silicon.com reported from London.