) -- Software maker


(SYMC) - Get Report

reports its first-quarter results after market close on Wednesday, with Wall Street expecting the security specialist to turn corporate data breach fears into dollars.

The recent spate of

high-profile cyber-attacks

that targeted


(SNE) - Get Report


Lockheed Martin

(LMT) - Get Report



(C) - Get Report

, coupled with ongoing concern about the

weakness of core U.S. national infrastructure

, has been

boosting Symantec's profile


"We believe demand for the

security category remains robust given heightened security awareness and a persistent threat environment, despite what we fear may be a broader deceleration in IT spending," wrote Todd Weller, an analyst at Stifel Nicolaus, in a recent note. "We anticipate fiscal first-quarter results will reflect healthy demand for Symantec's portfolio despite a tenuous macroeconomic backdrop."

Speaking during Symantec's recent financial analyst day, CFO James Beer told


that the company has been side-stepping the worst of the consumer spending slowdown, citing customers' need to store and secure

ever-growing volumes of information.

Symantec is coming off a

strong fourth quarter

, boosted by growth around enterprise backup, hosted services and data loss prevention (DLP).

This trend is likely to continue, according to Stifel Nicolaus' Weller. "Security and storage remain among the least discretionary enterprise software categories," he explained. "We believe Symantec's enterprise business continues to exhibit signs of improvement."

The software firm, which competes with


(MSFT) - Get Report



, now part of


(INTC) - Get Report

, also offered robust guidance when it reported its fourth-quarter results.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters are looking for Symantec to report revenue of $1.585 billion and earnings of 37 cents a share, up from $1.433 billion and 35 cents a share in the same period last year.

Symantec should be able to avoid the spending woes that recently impacted quarterly numbers from


(JNPR) - Get Report



(NFLX) - Get Report

. Recent results from other security specialists could bode well for the Silicon Valley firm.

Check Point

(CHKP) - Get Report

, for example, put out decent second-quarter numbers last week and raised its outlook, pushing the company's stock to a

new 52-week high

. Intel also said that McAfee recently brought in record second-quarter revenue, surpassing its expectations.

Web security and DLP specialist



further fueled expectations for security software stocks on Tuesday when it also reported record second-quarter revenue.

After successfully overcoming its

execution problems

of recent years, Symantec's shares have risen almost 11% in 2011. The company's stock, however, was down 50 cents, or 2.62%, to $18.57 on Wednesday amidst the broader sell off in tech stocks that saw the Nasdaq fall 1.83%.

--Written by James Rogers in New York.

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