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3/18/2008
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Compliance Tools Filter Down to Small and Medium Sized Businesses

As companies have automated more business processes, the government as well as industry market leaders have mandated that checks be put in place to ensure that those items are processed safely. Consequently, compliance tools have become a hot IT topic.

As companies have automated more business processes, the government as well as industry market leaders have mandated that checks be put in place to ensure that those items are processed safely. Consequently, compliance tools have become a hot IT topic.A bevy of start-up vendors have been scurrying to deliver compliance tools for initiatives, such as Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), Payment Card Industry (PCI) and Sarbanes-Oxley. Many of these products have been geared to Fortune 500 companies. As the market has been maturing, these solutions have been working their way down to small and medium sized businesses.

Since its formation in 2002, LogLogic have been delivering a platform so companies can collect, store, report on, and monitor log data, such as how many times a user works with an application, network resource, or server. In addition to enabling IT departments to monitor system usage, this information helps them ensure that only authorized personnel access their resources. The products have proven to be popular among large companies. LogLogic recently announced four appliances designed for small and medium businesses with starting prices of $37,500. The major advantage with LogLogics new products is they are prepackaged for specific tasks, such as Sarbanes-Oxley), so companies can more easily add them to their networks, stated Michael Cote, an analyst with market research firm Redmonk. Many compliance products include broad feature sets, so small and medium businesses need to spend a lot of time customizing them, something they often do not have the time or money to do.

While the LogLogic appliances have appealing features, the company faces some challenges in building its business. Compliance is becoming a catch all term that vendors are using to sell a wide variety of different devices. The need for logging transactions is not well understood among many businesses at the moment, so more education is required. Also, the firm is relatively small.

Established vendors, such as IBM, Cisco, and Microsoft, are expected to move more squarely into the compliance market, so it may become difficult for LogLogic to gain any marketing attention and build its business. While LogLogics long term fate is not clear, what is becoming evident is that small and medium businesses are gaining more options when searching for compliance tools.

Do you have any compliance tools in your company? What has been your experience with them? How easy, or difficult, has for your company to find compliance tools?

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