SonicWall Ups Security Ante

The Sunnyvale, Calif., company&'s Content Security Manager 2100 CF, which operates behind all leading firewall brands, is designed for companies that have an existing firewall and aren&'t ready to replace it, said Sameer Muthur, product manager for the 2100.

The new product will provide file scanning to protect against spyware, worms, viruses, Trojans, phishing, pharming and key-loggers coming through e-mail, P2P file-sharing, IM or multimedia applications, Muthur said.

Adding antivirus and antispyware features to the content filtering gateway is a smart move, added Chris Kroll, a security analyst with PM Systems, an integrator in Chapin, S.C., that is focused on providing solutions to credit unions. “In security, you need to take a layered approach,” he said. “This allows us to add another layer of security at a really affordable price for our customers. It&'s a very cost-effective product for what you get.”

While most companies already have antivirus software on their desktops, those applications largely function as “cleaners” that kick into action once a virus is detected, Muthur said. Providing antivirus and antispyware at the gateway prevents most malware from ever entering the network before the “cleaners” would need to go to work, he said.

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The new appliance also allows customers to control applications, Muthur said. For example, SonicWall&'s appliance uses deep packet inspection to discover and block harmful traffic rather than port blocking, and the 2100 can be used to block P2P applications such as Skype, the bandwidth-hogging VoIP application that is capable of bypassing blocked ports to find an open one, he said.

Available now, the Content Security Manager 2100 CF&'s list price ranges from $2,375 for 25 users to $4,735 for 250 users.

Meanwhile, SonicWall last week unveiled plans to complement its IPSec VPN line with a line of SSL-VPN solutions. The SSL-VPN 200 and SSL-VPN 2000 appliances, the company&'s first forays into the SSL VPN space, are slated to be available by the end of the year.