Next Symantec CEO to focus on security

In three weeks, Cupertino, Calif.-based Symantec Corp.’s chief operating officer Enrique Salem will assume the role of “CEO designate”, and drive the company’s focus back to security following a period of strayed focus, he said.

Symantec has grown its business to six billion dollars over the years, but along the way “started to get a little defocused,” said Salem.

The company’s size has afforded it the opportunity to successfully delve in multiple areas – security, storage management, system management – but Symantec must choose one primary focus, said Salem. In his new role, Salem wants to redirect Symantec to security given it’s a matter of ongoing concern to organizations that fear losing critical customer and employee data and intellectual property.

Recession or no recession, security remains a top focus for businesses, said Salem, recalling the 2001 economic recession when “Symantec did very well in that period because security continues to be relevant.”

In particular, he said Symantec’s expertise in data loss prevention (DLP) “will allow us to do some pretty innovative things.”

Among the soon-to-be CEO designate’s goals for Symantec, is to ensure growth, market leadership, and the continued “relevance that we have with individuals and businesses.” That said, Salem said the company must continue to invest in three areas: security, the move from tape to disk backup, and Software-as-a-Service.

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