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Clash of the Titans

All the fun we've had with single-vendor computing platforms seems likely to spill over into the security world as Microsoft and Cisco get cranking with the idea of end-to-end security. This story gives a pretty good overview of the initial issues, but everything is going to continue to boil down to how well products designed to work within a unified environment can integrate with one another.

Preston Gralla provides great perspective on this issue, and it's important to remember that we're seeing the early skirmishes in a battle that promises to be huge as enterprises focus more effort and money on protecting information. It's been a long time since I've seen so many different approaches to solve the same broadly-defined problem (MS-DOS versus CP/M-86, anyone?), and the plethora of options is tough on anyone looking to make an iron-clad decision. The good news is that this surfeit of products, technologies, and architectures can be the fastest path to innovate security that fully solves the very real security threats facing companies. It's messy, but it can be a very good mess.