Product of the Day: BitDefender Mail Protection for Small Business
Spam is a nuisance; so are viruses that shut down your network. Fraud artists have used the Internet to further their scams they have perfected on the telephone, in direct mail and newspaper ads. Successful protecting of your computer systems from these threats has concentrated in providing an initial defense at the SMTP gateway on mail servers. Secondary entry points are also monitored at the desktop through a quarantine system for users. New entry points for threats have now emerged through browsers and PDF files.
Here is a security package that offers a Linux solution for the Small Business owner you may want to look at. Softwin SRL of Bucharest Romania manufactures the BitDefender Mail Protection for Small Business security product that can protect your network for $772 for a one year license with support for 25 users. They also offer a freeware version branded as BitDefender Linux Edition that is available for free.
The product is available for all Linux platforms with glibc version 2.2.3 or newer. The packages are self-extractive shell archives for rpm- based distributions (RedHat Enterprise Linux, SuSe Linux Enterprise Server, Fedora Core, Mandrake), Debian and Debian-based distribution and and binary tars for other Linux distributions (Slackware, Gentoo, etc). BitDefender for Small Business is compiled and built with gcc 2.9x and gcc 3.x compilers.
Installation of the software seems quite simple. The BitDefender Advanced Linux Installer Script Engine (ALISE) autodetects the system configuration, pulls any necessary packages from the network, detects installed mail servers and recommends the appropriate agent(s) to be used. The agent(s) chosen are then installed automatically. This automated install process ensures an average 60 seconds deployment time with 0 mail server downtime. Also, no delving through config files is required. Remote Administration is available via your favourite ssh client (console based), a windows console or the remote web-based administration interface.
As with any new software you want to add to your system, compatibility issues must be considered. The software has been tested for compatibility with the following email servers, Sendmail, Exim , Postfix , Netscape Messenger , Lotus Domino , ICE WebMail , Imail , NTMAIL, CommuniGate PRO , AVIRT mail , InFusion Mail Server , Apache James ,602 PRO, LAN SUITE , WorkgroupMail Mail Server, DesktopServer2000 and TrueNorth Software.
SMTP Gateway Protection: BitDefender will scan all incoming and outgoing email traffic for spam, viruses and malware. All users will have embedded automatic updates of their servers for the latest detected viruses. The solution uses a technology named "Update Pushing" that actually pushes any immediate remedies into your mailserver whenever it becomes available thus reducing the vulnerability window to a minimum whenever a new virus outbreak occurs.
E-Mail Filtering Techniques:
Heuristic analysis technology: The heuristic filter performs set of tests on all the message components, (i.e. not only the header but also the message body in either HTML or text format), looking for words, phrases, links or other characteristics of spam. For better detection, BitDefender designed HiVE ( Heuristics in Virtual Environments ), a technology that observes a potential virus in a virtual environment and examines its behaviour to decide if the file is actually a virus or not.
WBL (White List / Blacklist) support: This quite simply means that the admin can set a list of trusted and untrusted addresses from which to respectively always accept or always reject mail.
URL Filter: Most of the spam messages contain links to various web locations (which contain more advertising and the possibility to buy things, usually). BitDefender has a database which contains links to these kinds of sites. Every time you perform an update new links will be added to the URL filter; this will help increase the effectiveness of your AntiSpam engine.
Quarantine Module: Infected or suspected files are isolated in a safe quarantine zone, preventing the infection from spreading. The quarantine zone can be analyzed at any time by the IT manager or it can be sent for analysis to the BitDefender Antivirus Lab. Administrators can view/download quarantined files, re-scan quarantined files or send them for analysis to BitDefender Labs.
Smart Scanning: E -mail messages with multiple recipients are filtered only once, before delivery, and not for every single recipient.
Protecting your networks also requires that you educate your users in how to prevent a virus from spreading. Here are some tips on how to do some preventative maintenance on your networks to reduce the security threats.