Tenable vs Qualys

Pallavi Vishwakarma
July 12, 2023

Is Tenable any good?

Tenable is one of the industry's most comprehensive risk-based vulnerability management (RBVM) platforms, enabling you to:

  • See all assets and vulnerabilities across your entire attack surface—including cloud, OT, and container environments
  • Predict what matters by understanding vulnerabilities in the context of business risk, as well as the criticality of affected assets
  • Act on each high-priority vulnerability to effectively manage risk, and measure KPIs to effectively communicate the effectiveness.

Based on the verified Tenable reviews on platforms like G2 and Capterra, people tend to use them as penetration scanners. Does Tenable do a good job? Depends on who you ask.

While some reviews (especially older ones) are positive, some Tenable customers say they have to deal with a large number of False/negative positives rate and lack of a good, enriched API integration and API features/capabilities. While not necessarily a deal breaker for some, these issues may become annoying or disruptive to you in the long run.

What about Qualys, then?

Qualys VMDR is an all-in-one risk-based vulnerability management solution that quantifies cyber risk. It gives organizations unprecedented insights into their risk posture and provides actionable steps to reduce risk. It also gives cybersecurity and IT teams a shared platform to collaborate and the power to quickly align and automate no-code workflows to respond to threats with automated remediation and integrations with ITSM solutions such as ServiceNow.

If you read what customers say about Qualys, you'll see that most of them have been using it for Vulnerability scanning for a while now. 

But in recent Qualys G2 reviews, we see customers complain about the sparse documentation and often simply echo what's on the screen, rather than explaining the concept behind it, It's difficult to compartmentalize permissions in a distributed environment, and unhelpful front-line technical support more and more often. 

This may not be the best sign for people looking for a reliable tool. 

Which one should you pick?

Let's see some points through which you can get better clarity about both tools:

  1. Product offerings: 

Tenable's primary product is the Nessus vulnerability scanner, which is available in both on-premises and cloud-based versions. Tenable also offers a range of other products, including Tenable.io, Tenable.sc, and Tenable.ot. Qualys, on the other hand, offers a suite of cloud-based security and compliance solutions, including Qualys Vulnerability Management, Qualys Policy Compliance, and Qualys Container Security.

  1. Pricing: 

Tenable's pricing structure is based on the number of IP addresses that need to be scanned. Qualys also uses an IP-based pricing model but has a broader range of pricing options, including volume discounts, prepaid options, and annual subscriptions.

  1. User interface: 

Tenable's user interface is intuitive and user-friendly, with easy-to-use dashboards and reports. Qualys' interface is also user-friendly, but it can be overwhelming for first-time users due to the sheer number of features and options.

  1. Integration: 

Both Tenable and Qualys integrate with third-party security tools, such as SIEMs, threat intelligence platforms, and security orchestration and automation platforms. However, Tenable has a more extensive range of integrations, including cloud providers, network devices, and endpoint protection solutions.

  1. Accuracy:

Tenable is known for the accuracy of its vulnerability scanning, which is based on a combination of its extensive vulnerability database and advanced scanning algorithms. Qualys is also highly accurate but relies more on its extensive vulnerability database.

  1. Automation:

Both Tenable and Qualys provide automation capabilities that help organizations streamline vulnerability management processes. Tenable's OT solution is designed to automate the detection and remediation of vulnerabilities in industrial systems, while Qualys offers a cloud-based platform that automates vulnerability management tasks.

  1. Scalability:

Both Tenable and Qualys offer scalable solutions that can accommodate organizations of various sizes. However, Qualys is known for its ability to scale to large enterprises with complex environments, thanks to its cloud-based architecture.

  1. Customer support: 

Both Tenable and Qualys provide comprehensive customer support, including 24/7 technical support, online resources, and training. However, Tenable has a reputation for being more responsive to customer needs and offering personalized support.

Final thoughts:

Tenable and Qualys offer similar vulnerability management solutions, but there are differences in the features of their tools. Enterprises should evaluate their specific needs and compare these factors before selecting a solution.

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