Amid growing security concerns around instant messaging, e-mail security vendor Postini Inc. this week will extend its hosted security service to include IM.
Similar to the Postini Perimeter Manager for e-mail, Postinis new Perimeter Manager for IM is a hosted service that scans messages for a variety of security threats. It also allows IT administrators to set policies around which individuals or groups in a company can use IM and how they can use it, said officials for Postini, in Redwood City, Calif. The new offering is based on technology Postini licensed from IM security specialist IMlogic Inc.
While still small in number compared with e-mail security threats, IM threats are on the rise, according to officials for IMlogic, in Waltham, Mass. The company last week reported a 3,500 percent increase in IM threats including viruses, worms, spam, malware and phishing attacks last month, compared with the same period a year ago.
When IM was little more than a chat program for teens, these kinds of threats didnt really exist. But as IM use spread in the enterprise in recent years, malware authors and online criminals began to pay attention and now are focusing a good portion of their energy attacking these networks.
Postini also plans to launch later this year Postini Archive Manager, an archiving service for IM and e-mail.
World Wildlife Fund, which uses Postinis anti-virus and anti-spam e-mail service, plans to test out the new archiving tool for e-mail, said Gregory Smith, vice president and CIO for WWF, in Washington, and an eWEEK Corporate Partner.
Some of WWFs key drivers for an archiving tool are easier search capability, ease of management and improved security, said Smith.
"Were really looking at using tools to mitigate security concerns and decrease traffic," said Smith.
Postini Perimeter Manager for IM is available now, and Postini Archive Manager will be available next quarter.