New Survey Reveals API Strategies, Concerns as Enterprises Look To Securely Free Data for Business Growth

With 68% worried about API sprawl and nearly 40% adopting a hybrid approach to digital transformation this year, enterprises press on for integrated data experiences and secure data exchange

Axway, a leading provider of API management and integration software, announced new data from its inaugural 2022 Open Everything Strategy Survey Report. Polling nearly 1,000 IT leaders, architects, and developers about their digital strategies and top concerns, the survey found nearly 40% of organizations are in the process of adopting a new hybrid approach for their IT infrastructure. The transformation comes as 68% of respondents cite their fears about API sprawl.

The survey data reflects responses from those engaged primarily in API development (893) and managed file transfer (MFT) services (102). Ensuring data security and controlling API sprawl were top concerns, with over two-thirds (68%) worrying about complexity due to sprawl and almost half (48%) of respondents ranking “increased security challenges” as their single greatest concern with API growth. Respondents again cited security as far and away the most important criteria when creating an API (30% among API respondents) and when setting up a new MFT service (48% among MFT respondents).

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“Enterprises are in the thick of digital transformation and accompanying cloud and data migrations have made it possible to free up data so it can be exchanged, reused and remixed to fuel innovation and business growth. But that’s messy”

“Enterprises are in the thick of digital transformation and accompanying cloud and data migrations have made it possible to free up data so it can be exchanged, reused and remixed to fuel innovation and business growth. But that’s messy,” said Vince Padua, Chief Innovation and Technology Officer at Axway. “It brings complexity and security challenges that must be answered by using truly universal API management—that bridges the gap between API development and consumption and opens everything, lines of business and innovation, while building on and out from heritage infrastructure.”

The survey results indicate that budgets for API management have increased over the past two years and that security is top of mind as companies begin to unlock the full value of their data to create new digital experiences, markets and opportunities for revenue. Half of those surveyed reported modestly elevated API management budgets, with about 34% of respondents seeing increases up to 25%. Less than 20% of respondents saw budget decreases.

Drilling down further into security strategy and the impending skills gap

Digging deeper, the survey found that a significant majority, 59%, employ user authentication as a top strategy to secure APIs, and almost two-thirds of the API respondents (61%) said data encryption can help them personally feel their data is more secure. They also cited developing a more holistic approach to security as the number one strategy for protecting personal data.

When a member logs into our online channels or walks into one of our branches, we want to personalize their experience in real time. To achieve this, we targeted a high-performance API integration layer,” said Ravi Peru, Chief Information Officer at Community America Credit Union.

“When you have more than 50 products, handling integration in an agile way is very important,” added Peru. “With Axway, we can interface with anything and move data between any internal systems we want. That would be really slow with point-to-point integration, but Axway makes it quick and easy.”

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Security factors into cloud strategy as well. Among the most significant challenges inhibiting cloud strategy, according to respondents, are:

  • 53% – Dealing with different security requirements for regional instances of cloud infra
  • 55% – Tracking and controlling the flow of personal data into and through the cloud

One of the most alarming, but not entirely surprising data points, deals with concerns about talent: 86% of API respondents fear an expertise gap in the coming years, where companies will not have the skilled software and IT infrastructure talent they need to innovate.

Survey Methodology

The 2022 Open Everything Strategy Survey was conducted between July 21 and August 16 of 2022 among two similar, but divided subsets of respondents: API development and MFT integration professionals. Axway engaged in direct email outreach among its contacts with opt-in email addresses, and received nearly 1,000 responses, including 893 from those in API development and 102 in MFT services, from various locations throughout the world.

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