IBM Unveils Virtual E-Mail Security Appliance
August 7, 2007 Dan Burger
Because of rampant data leaks and losses of confidential information, e-mail security continues to be a top priority for many organizations and news of new products in this field are met with great expectations. IBM is in the game with a new virtual e-mail security product that has the capability to inspect both inbound and outbound communication.
Based on the Proventia Network Mail Security System from the IBM Internet Security Systems division, it is designed to block the full realm of malicious code affecting e-mail systems. The enemies include spam, phishing attacks, viruses, worms, and other malcode. It also takes aim at the complexity brought on by the cumbersome quantity of physical components needed to support and secure IT environments.
By offering a virtual security solution to verify the integrity of messaging technology deployments, IBM officials say the ISS virtual e-mail security appliance can add value by lowering the total cost of hardware and management of that hardware and simplifying the tracking, auditing, and prevention of messaging-based threats.
The strength of this virtual e-mail security appliance is that it offers more comprehensive, preemptive protection against messaging threats through, what IBM calls “one of the industry’s leading intrusion- prevention system (IPS) technologies,” which is designed to block both traditional and image-based spam, while providing the messaging infrastructure a layered security–from network to host.
Centralized management, always a key benefit to take into account, is built in thanks to the Proventia portfolio, which is part of a pre-existing integrated and unified security platform.
The virtual version of the Proventia Network Mail Security System is scheduled to be available this month, and runs on only the VMware virtualization hypervisor, which means System i users (most likely those who are looking at server consolidation projects) need either an Integrated xSeries Server or an Integrated xSeries Adapter installed in a supported xSeries server in order to take advantage of the appliance. (The IxS and IxA do not yet support all of the features of VMware’s ESX Server hypervisor when using the Integrated File System as a data store, but IBM and VMware are working on it.) IBM says there are plans to extend this mail security product to other platforms in the future, but no specifics have been provided.
IBM’s ISS unit designs and markets IPS and other IT security equipment. It also operates the X-Force research and development organization that collects cybercrime information and passes it along to its customers as part of its security protection service.
For further information on IBM ISS e-mail security solutions, go to: these links.