After reading this inane blog post, “Cisco – Buying into the security game,” from an EMEA product manager for HP TippingPoint, the Security Twittersphere rose up together to call out this nonsense. I figured I would just let it lie, but I couldn’t. This is the worst type of competitive positioning – basically calling out a competitor for doing exactly what you have done. I think psychologists call this projection.

Let’s just excerpt a few statements from the post, so you can get a good feel for how ridiculous it was.

By purchasing Sourcefire, Cisco has all but admitted that they had no relevance in today’s security solutions market. They’re stuck on enhancing the products they have in the market, and making acquisitions to get a foothold in IPS.

Huh? You either enhance your existing products or you make an acquisition. Or sometimes both. Is there a third option I’m missing? And for a company with no relevance in today’s security market, Cisco sells a bunch of gear. In fact, substantially more than TippingPoint. And it’s not like HP has been in the network security space for years. They inherited TippingPoint along with the 3Com deal, which they did to enhance their position in network switching, not in security. But those are pesky details, eh?

Now I’m not Cisco apologist here. As I wrote in the CSCO/FIRE deal analysis, Cisco isn’t as competitive as they need to be to have a place in the Perimeter Security Gateway market. That’s why they had to write the multi-billion-dollar check. HP TippingPoint is positioned worse then Cisco because they don’t have a FW platform at all, and you need both capabilities (FW, IPS, and other stuff) to be competitive moving forward.

As we look at Snort–and know that Cisco has a limited OpenSource track record–one would tend to believe that they’ll eventually just scrap it.

Another WTF. This guy has no basis for this statement. Especially after Cisco and Sourcefire publicly committed to future support for Snorty. This is just FUD-mongering nonsense.

So, the question remains: Is Cisco serious? Are they REALLY in the security game for the long run? Looking back, surely the time for Cisco to get into the IPS business was 8 years ago, when Check Point failed to acquire Sourcefire–why the game change now?

Wow. Cisco has been in the IPS business. But that’s the problem with folks who don’t get out much. They drink their own bathwater and don’t realize the rest of the industry is feeding on their installed base. They poke fun at companies making decisive moves to better their market position, while their city is burning to the ground.