Sales of network security appliances continued to sizzle in the third quarter, up 10% year over year to nearly $2.4 billion worldwide. It was the 20th consecutive quarter of growth for the market, research firm IDC said in a report Monday.


Top vendor Cisco Systems (NASDAQ:CSCO) expanded its lead to 18.7% market share, up from 15.9% a year earlier. Its security appliance sales rose 29.3% year over year, almost three times the rate of the total market.

Check Point Software Technologies (NASDAQ:CHKP) was second with 12.7% market share, up a smidge from 12.4% a year earlier.


Rounding out the top five were Palo Alto Networks (NYSE:PANW) with 7.6% market share, Fortinet (NASDAQ:FTNT) at 7.3% and Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) -owned McAfee at 5.1%.

Palo Alto Networks posted the fastest growth rate in the quarter, a blistering 58.3%, IDC said.

While the top five vendors in the category grew, all other companies combined had a 2.5% revenue decline. The top five companies accounted for 51.4% of security appliance sales in the third quarter, IDC said.
Security appliance unit shipments rose 7.3% year over year to 520,752 units, marking the fourth consecutive quarter of growth, IDC reported.

The market is being driven largely by unified threat management systems, a cybersecurity product capable of performing multiple security functions within a single appliance, IDC said in a press release.

“As the number of mobile users, digital applications and data networks increase, providing a comprehensive threat management solution for identifying and minimizing cybercrime poses a challenge to every sector and has become a critical piece of infrastructure,” IDC analyst Ebenezer Obeng-Nyarkoh said in a statement.

“Cyberbreaches can be very detrimental to an organization, and meeting an organization’s security needs with a robust and comprehensive solution has become increasingly challenging.”