Appliance handles in and outgoing security
Secure web gateway supplier Finjan Inc has come out with an appliance that can handle data loss prevention, content caching, application control, URL filtering and Web 2.0 security all from a single unit.
“Content acceleration and caching could be done in a separate box, as could data leakage prevention,” Finjan’s CTO Yuval Ben-Itzhak told us. “But there are advantages in doing it all through the same interface. It means it’s easier to manage. It means it’s flexible, and allows you to apply the same or different policies across the different functions. It also means it’s cheaper.”
Data theft is a big concern among Finjan customers, Ben-Itzhak explained, “but a bigger one is operating expense, and everyone has to keep one eye on the cost of ownership.”
He said a survey carried out for the company in August 2008 confirmed these facts.
Security budgets are flat for most all sectors, yet over 90% of all participating organisations perceive cybercrime as a major business risk. The survey also found that the majority of the CIOs and their security chiefs are more concerned about data-stealing malware entering their networks, than about traditional virus infections.
Appliances like Finjan’s Secure Web Gateway v9.2 protect organisations from inbound malware attacks and outbound data leakage over all protocols, be it HTTP, SSL or FTP. The company is not alone in the providing appliances with vendors of filtering, anti-virus or anti-spam software now coming at the market from different directions.
Ben-Itzhak noted that 60% of those polled said they would be drawn to the idea of a unified threat management appliance, rather than having to deploy several best-of-breed devices to screen against the same payload.
A secure Web gateway appliance filters unwanted software or malware from web and internet traffic and enforces corporate and regulatory policy compliance.
At a minimum, Gartner recommends the box includes URL filtering, as well as malicious-code detection and filtering. It should also be able to provide Web application-level controls for at least some of the more popular applications, such as instant messaging (IM). Ideally, an appliance should also link with enterprise directories to provide authentication and authorisation, and group-level and user-level policy enforcement.
Finjan reckons its system is particularly flexible on the policy management front and comes with data leakage prevention, integrated content caching; three anti-virus modules and two URL filtering engines from IBM Proventia and Websense built in.
Its systems use real-time content to inspect inbound and outbound communication, regardless of its originating URL and without signature-matching. Inspected content remains encrypted when entering and exiting the appliance, it said.
Finjan’s Acrobat Flash and PDF content inspection processes can screen against latest threats that now are often embedded in these rich content types, and will control use of IM, Skype, and P2P by name or category. Data leakage is carried out using dictionaries and patented pattern matching routines.
Secure Web Gateway v9.2 ships today.