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March 4, 2009

Cisco to switch on security service blend

Security sourced on premise, off-site in the cloud or as a combination

By CBR Staff Writer

Cisco Systems Inc plans to cover all the bases with a number of options for hosted and managed email security services that will be layered against its IronPort appliance and reputation database offerings.

There are options for businesses to be supplied with email protection through a dedicated e-mail infrastructure hosted out a network of Cisco data centres, to install the Cisco security systems on site so that they can then be remotely managed and monitored by Cisco security engineers, or to use a blend of both approaches. 

The benefits of the hybrid approach would be that organisations can take advantage of the efficiencies of the cloud but maintain physical control of on-premise equipment for handling sensitive data, the company said.

It is also said to provide maximum flexibility with additional outbound controls including DLP, encryption and onsite LDAP integration.

In all cases, Cisco would supply spam protection, data-loss prevention, virus defense and e-mail authentication services. The services will be turned on in April, the company has confirmed.

The IronPort SenderBase system was built on a model of filters which allow its appliances to look at the reputation of the incoming mail sever and throttle the traffic according to past behaviour.

The more spam-like a mail server appears, the slower the connection. 

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Reputation filters can stop most all of incoming spam, before it even enters a network. IronPort appliances also use spam filter algorithms to examine the full context of a message to reduce the chance of false positives.

First introduced in February 2003 IronPort’s SenderBase network collects data on more than 25% of the world’s email traffic.

 

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