Antivirus software to grow to $4.4B in 2007

The worldwide antivirus software market proved to be a primary area for security spending in 2002, achieving $2.2 billion in revenues and representing an impressive 31% increase over 2001. IDC believes growth will continue over the next five years, reaching $4.4 billion in 2007, as protection against virus and worm attacks remains a top priority for corporations and greater awareness fuels consumer spending.

According to IDC, both corporate and consumer spending on antivirus software increased in 2002, with consumer spending actually surpassing corporate spending by 8.5%. IDC believes increasing consumer knowledge regarding attacks and the rise in monthly subscription renewals for virus protection are driving growth in this segment.

Viruses and worms continue to be, by a wide margin, the most common threat facing corporations today. A recent IDC survey of 325 firms across the United States revealed that 82% of respondents have experienced attacks. Over 30% of these organizations reported that the attack was detected but not repelled immediately.

However, just as virus and worm detection technologies become more sophisticated, so do the virus writers. Moreover, worms and viruses are increasingly using Spam techniques ? not just the exploitation of unprotected mail relays to maximize spread, but also the use of social engineering to trick victims into opening malicious files. IDC also believes that new attacks could derive revenue from illegal proliferation of an unauthorized Spam server.

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