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April 7, 2009

Safend preps content inspection add-in

Addition promises fine grain content controls

By CBR Staff Writer

Safend Inc is to complete its data protection suite by the end of the year with a content inspection system that comes with some fine granular controls to safeguard against sensitive data like card card details, healthcare identity data or national identity numbers being leaked through careless or malicious misuse.

The addition will stop people sending sensitive data in an email, storing them on a memory stock or posting them to a file share server, by checking content movements according to an in-built customisable rules base.

The system is intelligent enough to distinguish if a string of 16 digits contained in a message or file definitely represents a credit card number issued by Matercard. It won’t interfere with legitimate content movements containing a 16-digit sales account number or a phone number, Safend VP Edy Almer told us.“That’s the same for a ten digit healthcare number. It doesn’t give false positives” he said. 

The company’s product line to date has included Safend Encryptor for hard disk protection, Safend Protector for port and device control, and Safend Reporter for security status analysis. 

These will be joined by Safend Inspector, once the software launches later this year.

The Safend suite encrypts all data files and poses negligible performance impact on user productivity, the vendor said. It enforces an enterprise-wide policy which protects the data stored on PC and laptop hard drives so that sensitive data cannot be read by unauthorised users in the case of loss or theft.

“Disk encryption is persistent and at the file level, rather than at the disk level and this has benefits over sector-based encryption or pre-boot encryption methods” Almer said.

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Despite the downturn business in this segment is showing an uptick, Safend VP Edy Almer told us.

“Organisations understand the importance of data leakage protection. We’ve seen sales cycles come down from 180 days to around 90 days this year. Customers just seem to get it now. There’s a realisation that if a business leaks personally identifiable information, then it is going to get fined.” 

Regulatory pressure is constant, and triggers like the April 1 deadline in the UK for public sectors bodies to comply with the so-called code of connection (CoCo), are also pushing security up the agenda.

Compliance to the CoCo calls for a number of security control measures before authorities can connect to the GCSx secure private WAN which acts as a secure email relay service between connected local authorities, which also enables secure data sharing. 

VC-backed Safend claims to have deployed its secure endpoint systems to 1,700 customers and 1.7 million seats in public sector, healthcare and financial services organisations and at increasing numbers of PCI-sensitive retailers. 

The company competes against the likes of McAfee, Check Point Software and Symantec and claims an advantage over them by providing all the components needed for data loss protection in a single systems that handles content inspection, device control, port control and encryption. 

“We do everything in-house and have purpose-built a complete product in a single client, and which can be deployed and managed from one console. It’s completely transparent to the operating system of the end point device, transparent to the user, and to helpdesk.”


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