Kaspersky Security Tool Offers Greater Speed, Functionality

The beta version of Kaspersky Version 8.0, demonstrated in front of an audience of about 130 channel partners Friday during the Kaspersky Lab Partner Conference in Fajardo, Puerto Rico, focuses on Web 2.0 protection, combining both heuristics and signature-based technologies.

Altogether, executives said that the new Version 8.0 comprehensive security product features 600 percent improvement in scanning speed and easier installation and deployment, with an updated antivirus engine, vulnerability scanner, new heuristic analyzer and policy enforcement capabilities.

"We're very much focused on quality in this product," said Peter Beardmore, senior product marketing manager for Kaspersky Lab. "One of our strengths is quality. We want to make absolutely sure we have a rock-solid product to launch in the market."

In general, Version 8.0 will be targeted toward small and medium businesses as the answer to costly and complicated enterprise-class DLP solutions.

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"It you think about policy enforcement, the reality is, the industry loves to talk about DLP. The fact is that even at the enterprise level, the deployment is very small," Beardmore said.

Beardmore said that more often than not, the SMB has no method for enforcing user policy. "Our customers are asking for a pragmatic approach to protect data," he said.

With increased speed, the tool's new antivirus engine runs a whole lot faster than the previous antivirus engine and supports new types of signatures, Beardmore said. "The fact is that signatures have evolved considerably, and really this prompted us to build this new antivirus engine."

The new antivirus engine also categorizes the viruses and malware, reducing the memory and processing, which over the long haul is estimated to lessen the number of signatures on the machine, Beardmore added.

Version 8.0's vulnerability scanner offers business customers the ability to identify unpatched applications, executives noted. And its policy enforcement function is capable of accommodating more and increasingly nuanced business policies. Preconfigured reporting capabilities allow users to customize reports and individualize reporting at their discretion, executives said.

For administrators, Version 2.0 offers a more intuitive, user-friendly graphic interface, which discovers all the machines on the network. A wizard tool walks administrators systematically through the deployment process step by step. The enhanced administrative tool also allows users to monitor, block and control employee access to certain Web sites, depending on the time of day.

Partners who attended the beta Version 8.0 demonstration said that they were excited about the tool's significantly greater speed functionality. Blake Webber, director of sales for Ridgeland, Miss.-based Business Communications and Integration, said that during the presentation he e-mailed his colleagues in the U.S. to apprise them of the impending release.

"I'm most excited about the enhancements they've made to the administrative tool. It's easier to use and a little more comprehensive and robust," Webber said. "Secondly, some of the Web-filtering tools that they have they don't want to go all out and deploy a Web content and filtering solution. They need something a little more entry-point and it seems like [Version 8.0] is going to be a good fit for that."