The Asia Pacific Web application firewall (WAF) market is poised to hit the high growth trajectory, with the CAGR pegged at a strong 38.6 percent until 2015. Relentless attacks targeting government, service provider and banking sites encouraged a more proactive stance in combating the attacks. These drove the gravitation toward WAF solutions. The Asia Pacific WAF market had registered a robust growth of 28.4 percent on a YoY basis in 2010.
The rapid emergence of Web 2.0 technologies in the enterprise environment, coupled with the fast growing consumer community of mobile devices played a pivotal role in steering the growth of Web applications.
New analysis from Frost & Sullivan (networksecurity.frost.com), Asia Pacific (including Japan) Web Application Firewall Market CY2010, finds that the market earned revenues of US$60.2 million in 2010 and estimates this to reach US$315.1 million in 2015.
"Most of the markets in the region represent immense growth opportunities for WAFs as cyber attacks grow in sophistication and awareness levels among enterprises toward the technology improve," says Frost & Sullivan Industry Analyst Cathy Huang. "Regulatory compliance is another factor helping to push WAF uptake."
The government vertical experienced a huge surge, emerging as the second-largest adopter in the Asia Pacific WAF market for 2010. As almost all the markets in the region were undergoing some form of e-government initiatives, WAF protection was viewed as a necessity to protect governmental assets on the Web.
Moreover, government sites are among those most commonly targeted by cyber criminals, regardless of how static or advanced the Website is. As a result, the government vertical (including the defense sector) became a key spender in the Asia Pacific WAF market for 2010. The major contributing countries include China and South Korea.
Although the demand for WAF has gone beyond the hype phase in many ways in Asia Pacific, there is still prevailing market confusion surrounding the unique value proposition that WAF offers. Countries in Asia Pacific had only witnessed the adoption of WAF in limited verticals where enterprises were relatively more security-conscious. Moreover, the current status of incorporating Web technologies into business setup is still low in some of the Asia Pacific countries.
"A large number of enterprises in the region had expected their legacy security solutions such as proxy, anti-virus solution, network-based firewall, intrusion prevention system (IPS) and so forth to address issues such as application attacks or web related vulnerabilities," says Huang. "As the effectiveness of those solutions to solve these problems was not as high as expected, WAF is now being perceived as a more potent solution."
The efforts of WAF vendors in propagating the unique proposition of having WAF helped to reduce market confusion between WAF and other security technologies. In 2010, enterprises in the region had begun to display an improved understanding of the technology. Yet, the confusion still exists, particularly in some markets such as Malaysia, Indonesia, and Thailand. WAF vendors in these regions must step up initiatives to raise awareness levels on the benefits of the technology to ensure traction for the market.
With the Web rapidly emerging as a key channel to drive forward business processes, the security market is likely to witness the rise of WAF as a primary security platform on the Web front, similar to the role that the network-based firewall has been performing for corporate networks up until now.
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Asia Pacific (including Japan) Web Application Firewall Market CY2010 / P4E0