Phishing, regulatory compliance, voice over IP, and spam will be major themes for the messaging industry in 2005, according to analysts' predictions offered today.
A report by Ferris Research suggests that 90 per cent of all mailboxes experiencing a spam problem will be protected by commercial anti-spam offerings by the end of 2005.
The study also noted that phishing and spyware will be demonstrated as a problem not limited to consumer mailboxes in the coming year.
Phishing attacks will attempt to steal organisations' credentials, and spyware will increasingly be viewed as a corporate threat.
In addition, the analyst firm said that regulatory compliance will be a top concern for many messaging managers.
As legal judgements and court decisions are handed down in 2005, it will become much easier for organisations to determine what they must do to ensure compliance.
The tougher regulatory climate is expected to drive an increasing interest in messaging archiving. As this becomes a higher priority, investment in archiving companies will increase, although further vendor consolidation in the sector is certain.
According to Ferris Research, organisations will continue to resist major upgrades or platform migrations.
Weak business justification, and the relatively large effort sometimes involved, suggest that only those running the most outdated systems, or involved in mergers, will find good reasons for a major change.
Wireless access to email, instant messaging, calendar and tasks, once reserved for the 'techno-elite', will become increasingly mainstream over the coming 12 months.
Tools to help address email information overload, such as searching, filtering and automated categorisation, will receive strong interest in 2005, the study predicted.
Ferris Research also expects the use of VoIP services from conventional phones, between PCs, and between PCs and conventional phones, will continue to expand as prices fall.
Existing telcos will offer flat-rate VoIP services as add-ons to DSL broadband offerings, cable providers will offer flat-rate VoIP services as one of a set of bundled offerings (i.e. TV/broadband/voice), and instant messaging vendors will work harder to integrate voice services.
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