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WatchGuard Ups the Ante for Network Security

WatchGuard Technologies has unveiled its latest network security software for the Firebox X Peak, Core and Edge unified threat management (UTM) appliances. This positions WatchGuard UTM devices as the leading price/performance UTM appliances, delivering a wide range of new security capabilities, connectivity features, increased performance and robust network administrative tools.

The new WatchGuard Fireware 10 and Edge 10 releases are highly-reliable, feature-rich UTM operating systems. Unlike other network security devices, Fireware 10 and Edge 10 are optimized for today's complex network connectivity schemes and are designed for high-reliability, enhanced UTM functionality, hardened security and greater administrator management and ease of control.

New features include integrated SSL VPN functionality along with support for Mobile VPN for Windows Mobile devices, and SIP and H.323 for voice over IP or video conferencing; real-time Virus Outbreak Detection (VOD) that identifies and blocks e-mail based malware based on Recurrent Pattern Detection; and a powerful new enterprise logging and reporting engine.

New Levels of Security and Connectivity Version 10 includes a myriad of new features to keep users securely connected to their network. For example, Fireware 10 and Edge 10 now integrate SSL VPN functionality. This makes them a suitable solution for mobile and remote workers who need to securely connect from virtually anywhere. Further addressing secure mobility needs, both operating systems will support Mobile VPN for Windows Mobile devices, and for workers who use voice over IP or video conferencing, Fireware 10 and Edge 10 support SIP and H.323 connections. Additionally, Edge 10 includes a wireless bridge mode that extends secure connectivity for wireless users.

Once connected, users and network administrators will appreciate the new single sign-on capability, which provides pass-through authentication to help users stay seamlessly connected to their corporate networks.

For customers running the optional WatchGuard spamBlocker security subscription, version 10 now includes support for Virus Outbreak Detection (VOD), an advanced, real-time security technology that identifies and blocks e-mail based malware, including spam, viruses and phishes. Because VOD uses Recurrent Pattern Detection technology, no signature updates are required, thus giving connected users immediate protection against unknown, "zero-day" virus attacks.

Additionally, Fireware 10 adds support for Vasco's popular two-factor authentication solutions for businesses that require the highest levels of secure connectivity. In summary, these features help workers stay more securely connected than ever before, thus allowing businesses to focus on productivity rather than employee help desk calls.

Full UTM Security Optimized for Network Administrators Administrators will value WatchGuard System Manager's (WSM) all new logging and reporting engine that scales for enterprise environments. This is complemented by powerful new log analysis tools, integration of WatchGuard LiveSecurity alerts into the appliance UI and support for SNMP v3; all of which provide administrators with unparalleled network security visibility, management and control.

Additional administrative tools in WebBlocker with version 10 include up to 54 categories of web filtering preferences, including URL-based filters, giving administrators unprecedented granular control and greater accuracy than just IP-based filters.

Another management issue addressed by version 10 revolves around employees and students who misuse HTTPS to bypass network security filters. By inserting "s" at the end of "http" in most web browser URL lines, users can often bypass many firewall and administrative rules, and hence surf inappropriate, unauthorized or otherwise unsafe websites. Fireware 10 and Edge 10 now include WebBlocker filtering for HTTPS web pages, effectively eliminating this pernicious security and productivity risk.



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