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Symantec Unveils DLP For Tablets, O3 Cloud Security Service

Symantec is extending its data loss prevention coverage to deal with the exploding usage of tablets, and it's also giving customers and partners a look at its O3 cloud security service.

cloud security service it debuted in February

Symantec's Data Loss Prevention for Tablet product addresses security risks that are coming to the fore due to the consumerization of IT. Symantec plans to launch it early next year for the Apple iPad, and the company eventually plans to also develop an Android version, said Tim Matthews, senior director of product marketing at Symantec.

Data Loss Prevention for Tablet works by monitoring content as it flows from the iPad over the network into the company, or to a Web or cloud application such as Dropbox or Facebook. It inspects the content flow to ensure that it doesn't contain any sensitive data that might violate company policy, Matthews said.

"It's an easy install for customers that already own Symantec Data Leak Prevention because it uses all of the same policies and protections," Matthews said.

Symantec sees this as a necessary DLP extension for companies that allow their employees to use tablets during the course of their daily duties. For example, if an employee were to modify a spreadsheet containing customer data and save it to Dropbox, Symantec Data Loss Prevention for Tablet would inspect the data, and if it's found to be in violation of company policy, block its transmission and send a warning to the user.

"This could prove useful if an employee were to comment on Facebook and tip off a potential acquisition by talking about the company's plans. We would intercept the post to Facebook and replace the data with a message that this content has been redacted or replaced," Matthews said.

Pricing for Symantec DLP for Tablet will be in line with Symantec Endpoint DLP, which is used for laptops, and Symantec is offering a limited beta to existing customers and partners.

Meanwhile, Symantec customers and partners get a chance to kick the tires on O3, its new service that sits "above" public, private and hybrid clouds and represents a three-layered approach to security.

Unveiled at Symantec's Vision Barcelona event, O3 is primarily aimed at access control, data protection and enabling IT to maintain control over security when working with multiple cloud service providers.

O3 includes a policy engine for governing information, devices and identities in the cloud, including the legacy corporate identities users already own and control; a protection layer that scans for confidential data and authenticates employees and devices before granting them access to the cloud; and monitoring and compliance layer, which shows how policies are being enforced and provides documentation for regulatory compliance purposes.

O3 is Symantec's effort to tackle the barriers, both psychological and actual, that exist around cloud security. In Symantec's 2011 State Of The Cloud survey of 5,300 SMB and enterprise organizations in 38 countries, conducted by Applied Research, roughly half of respondents indicated that their IT staffs aren't ready for the cloud.

"Interest in the cloud is high, but very few organizations have completed the move and they're still at an early stage in the process," said Dave Elliot, global cloud marketing chief at Symantec, in an interview. "Even those that have moved to the cloud have met real challenges in terms of comparing expected and realized goals.

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