Microsoft Corp has delivered the final version of its Internet Security and Acceleration Server. ISA Server 2004, a combination of firewall, VPN and web cache, has had improvements made in HTTP filtering and control, the firm said.
The company flagged up its application layer filtering as a major upgrade. The product can now do stateful inspection on HTTP traffic, and filter based on signatures of request URLs, headers and bodies, and response bodies.
The software also enables administrators to block data leaks by restricting HTTP Post traffic and FTP uploads, and to block incoming Windows executables without having to rely on just recognizing file extensions, which can be faked.
Microsoft flagged up numerous other new features and improvements, and said it has many partners that have built add-ons, including Cloudmark for spam filters, SurfControl and FilterLogix for web filtering and Panda and McAfee for anti-virus.
Microsoft does not have the best reputation for security. ISA is estimated to have about a 10% share of the software firewall market. Microsoft security chief Mike Nash said the software can be used as part of a layered security strategy.
Many customers already have a firewall but ISA Server used in conjunction with those firewalls provides a higher level of protection and the ability to make sure that customers are proactively being safe and secure on the internet, he said.