At the same time, AT&T and other carriers would have to sacrifice their existing businesses of selling firewall management and intrusion detection-type systems into enterprises, he said. But the move to push security tools to the bandwidth providers is one that has been made even more likely by the complexity of those technologies.
"I think we'll come out of this decade thinking it was silly to have separate perimeter security systems, it doesn't make sense to build the network and overlay security as an afterthought," Amoroso said. "We have as large of a managed security services business as anyone, but this work is better off embedded in the pipeline."
Emerging mobile and VoIP services will also include integrated security capabilities that replace many of the systems being implemented to protect those technologies today, according to the AT&T CIO.
"We can virtualize these things, and any carrier can do it; this is the direction that perimeter security is headed in. It's not a collision course, but rather something very pleasant, as finally there's something smooth and simple to solve these problems," he said. "It's absurd that all we hear today is that the carrier plays no role in all of this, that companies should do it at the edge. We know it's a lot of work, but we're already prepared to do it."