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Next-Gen CASB Blog

Why Was the First CASB Gartner Magic Quadrant Published in 2017?

By Rich Campagna | February 2, 2018 at 5:37 AM

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The Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB) market has been around for a few years now, with the first CASB vendors hitting the market in 2013. As best as I can tell, the term CASB was coined by Neil MacDonald and Peter Firstbrook of Gartner way back in 2012 in, The Growing Importance of Cloud Access Security Brokers.

Since that time, Gartner has stayed on top of the CASB space, publishing a lot of CASB research along the way. During that time, CASB has gone from a rarely recognized term, to top of mind for every CISO and security professional in the enterprise. 

Why then, did they wait until late 2017 to publish the first CASB Gartner Magic Quadrant?

The arrival of a Magic Quadrant in a fast growing space is generally a good indicator that the market is ready for mainstream adoption. In the beginning, vendors and early adopter enterprises work together to figure out the use case or use cases that really provide long term value to a broad range of enterprises. As much as we'd all like to claim to have a crystal ball that predicts the future, first movers typically end up building the product that serves as the starting point for figuring out what enterprises really need to solve.

Such was the case with the CASB space.

The first CASBs in the space are visibility tools, working off of the premise that cloud is bad and that the enterprise needs to discover and eliminate Shadow IT and sensitive data in the cloud. Provided many "a ha" or "oh sh*t" moments, but no ability to take any real action, so interest quickly faded. 

Then came Office 365 and a handful of other well known SaaS applications

These apps represented the dawn of today's use case for CASB in the enterprise - real-time data data & threat protection for the cloud. 

While these big cloud vendors are making huge investments in security, enterprises that take The Wall Street Journal Test know that they should still have security and compliance concerns.

So where is the CASB market evolving now?

More apps, more apps and more apps. Tens of enterprise apps become hundreds. Cloud becomes the de facto standard for new app deployment, with SaaS favored over custom apps running on IaaS platforms.

The CASB Magic Quadrant 2017 represents a point-in-time view of the rapidly evolving CASB market. I'm excited that Bitglass is the ONLY Visionary in the 2017 CASB MQ. I'm also excited to see how this market and Magic Quadrant evolves in 2018 and beyond.

BTW, Bitglass has licensed the MQ to provide to you free of charge. Download it here:

Download the CASB Magic Quadrant