FaceTime Communications introduced a new version of its gateway security appliance on Nov. 14, adding new tools for protecting against malware attacks while limiting end users access to Web-based communications systems.
Dubbed FaceTime Internet Security Edition, the product is due out at the end of November and offers a range of upgrades over existing security hardware devices from the company, based in Foster City, Calif.
By combining gateway security tools such as Web filtering and anti-spyware applications with its new messaging security features, FaceTime contends, the devices simplify management of multiple IT defense systems, saving companies time and money.
FaceTime has described Internet Security Edition as an integrated security platform for protecting against both malware and legitimate applications that companies may not want users to adopt, including public IM (instant messaging) systems, Web conferencing software, peer-to-peer file sharing systems and VOIP (voice over IP) tools.
According to a study published by FaceTime and research firm NewDiligence in November 2006, 83 percent of all enterprise workers are using one or more of these popular Web-based communications applications.
According to FaceTime, the Internet Security Edition appliance prevents users from opening themselves up to attack from external threats, while minimizing the potential for internal data leakage and limiting employees Web usage. The system also helps firms manage regulatory compliance by blocking access to external communications systems, company officials said.
“The large companies building these types of communications systems want as many people as possible to use their products, so they engineer them to tunnel through firewalls and other traditional security systems,” said Kailash Ambwani, chief executive of FaceTime. “This is in direct conflict with the work of IT managers who need to control access to IM, file sharing and VOIP in order to protect their companies against malware and internal data leakage.”
Some of the specific features added in Internet Security Edition are FaceTimes RTGuardian perimeter security application for managing Web filtering and anti-malware tools, along with the use of IM and P2P systems. The appliance, which will market at a starting price of $7,125, also features the companys GEM (Greynet Enterprise Manager), which is pitched as a centralized management, reporting and control server inside a LAN, allowing companies to remediate infected endpoint devices.
The appliance also offers automatic updates from the firms FaceTime Security Labs, meant to help protect companies against the latest malware attacks.