Experts: IDS is here to stay

Imagine my surprise when I read Experts: IDS is here to stay:

Conventional wisdom once had it that intrusion prevention systems (IPS) would eliminate the need for intrusion defense systems (IDS). But with threats getting worse by the day and IT pros needing every weapon they can find, the IDS is alive and well.

"IPS threatened to hurt the IDS market but IDS is better equipped to inspect malware," said Chris Liebert, a security analyst with Boston-based Yankee Group Research Inc. "IPS specializes in blocking, so each still have their own uses, and that's why IDS is still around."

IDS is now part of a larger intrusion defense arsenal that includes vulnerability management and access control technology. In fact, one analyst believes standalone IDS products will still be in demand five years from now while IPS technology will likely be folded in firewall products.

"In the long term, I do not think IPS devices will remain as separate products," said Eric Maiwald, a senior security analyst for Midvale, Utah-based Burton Group. "We see this happening already. All of the major firewall vendors offer some amount of IPS functionality in their products. At the same time, there is much firewall-like capability in the IPS products."

IDS products will probably remain as separate devices because of the need to monitor happenings on a network and monitor actions of other policy enforcement points, he said.
(emphasis added)

Wow, imagine that. Anyone who's read my books or this blog for any amount of time knows I've advocated this position for years. What's an "IPS" anyway? It's a filtering device, aka "firewall." What's an "IDS"? It's an attack or incident indication system. The two functions are completely different and should be separate. It's too late for me to say any more now, but I wanted to note this article before I forget I read it.


Anonymous said…
Well said-- I was actually just having a conversation with some co-workers making that exact point: IDS and IPS are complementary technologies, with different goals.
Unknown said…
I think this is to directly confront the June 2003 Gartner report / statement that "IDS is dead". Why it took four years to do so is beyond me and maybe IDS just needed more time to figure out what it wanted to be when it grew up.
scottder said…
Still many have been sold on the IPS "Solution". To the point where you really have to sell them on the idea that some things shouldn't be blocked.
Anonymous said…
Riddle me this, how is Pescatore still a "security player" after his moronic statement, which IMO was geared only towards one purpose? Getting companies to drop dollars on IPS.
Denny K Miu said…
As a technologist, I am accustomed to experts like Gartners lecturing me on how "customers don't buy technoology, they buy solutions". Well, it turns out that the experts can be wrong too.

Customers don't just buy solutions, they buy solutions that fit within their job description.

Gartner had created tremendous uproar with their original assertion which is probably why they did it. But they were wrong not because IPS is not viable but because IPS and IDS fundamentially sell to two different set of customers.

Richard was correct in pointing out that IPS belongs to firewall and will be part of the "networking" infrastructure whereas IDS will always remain part of the "monitoring" infrastructure.

IPS and IDS will co-exist because there are two separate job descrptions.


Denny K MIu
Anonymous said…
Just because you bought an IPS doesn't mean you have to enable the blocking functionality. You can enable blocking only for certain signatures or severity levels and turn it back off whenever. Why the debate over which is better? Also, the nice thing about separate devices with a dedicated purpose is you are not tied to a single vendor and their "all-in-one" product that may be crap. I just don't see how security collapsing into the switch is a good thing. Do you really want to be force fed integrated Cisco IPS? If that happens I wouldn't be suprised if we are talking about why would should be keeping things separate again in a few years. Could this be a cycle? Could this be planned obsolesence? *dripping with sarcasm*

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