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Product Watch: Blue Coat Systems Moves Into SMB Market

Longtime enterprise security gateway vendor takes product line downmarket
Blue Coat Systems, a longtime provider of Web security and WAN optimization solutions for large enterprises, yesterday introduced the Blue Coat ProxyOne appliance, which is targeted at small and midsize businesses (SMBs).

The ProxyOne appliance brings the same enterprise-class Web security used by 88 percent of the Fortune 500 to organizations that require a low-touch solution at an affordable price point, according to the company.

"With ProxyOne, we've fundamentally changed the deployment of the product," said Sasi Murthy, senior director of product marketing at Blue Coat. "Where our current products offer a lot of customization, ProxyOne is preconfigured -- you can drop it in in five minutes." For organizations with limited IT resources, the growing use of social media -- combined with the rapid evolution of Web-based threats -- presents a significant risk, Blue Coat noted. In 2010, 70 percent of SMBs were using social media tools. According to Panda Security, 30 percent of those businesses reported malware infections spread via social networks. "The shift in business to the Web has exposed small and large businesses alike to greater risk, yet smaller businesses often lack the financial and IT resources to protect their users, making them more vulnerable to rapidly evolving Web-based threats," said Lawrence Orans, research director at Gartner. "These smaller businesses need the same type of Web security that is commonly found in large enterprises but in a solution that is easy to manage, affordable and doesn't require them to be security experts." The Blue Coat ProxyOne appliance integrates Web filtering, inline malware and antivirus scanning, and on-box reporting to enable safer use of Web 2.0 applications, the company said. To provide protection from the latest threats without requiring Web security expertise, ProxyOne appliances can be deployed and configured in six steps by an IT generalist. They also include preconfigured policies and deliver automatic software upgrades and immediate security updates.

For real-time ratings and immediate protection against Web threats, ProxyOne appliances utilize Blue Coat WebFilter and connect to the cloud-based Blue Coat WebPulse service.

Utilizing advanced caching technologies, ProxyOne appliances speed the scanning process with a "scan once, serve many" model to speed performance.

ProxyOne appliances provide detailed on-box reporting of Web-based user activity, including potentially infected end users, compliance with usage policies, and the number of threats attempting to access the network. Businesses can customize the primary reporting window to best suit their requirements and concerns. Utilizing a combination of patented stream-splitting and caching technologies, ProxyOne appliances can prevent "video floods" that are caused when online video saturates the network, potentially stopping the network from responding to requests.

Blue Coat ProxyOne appliances are now available. Pricing for the first year starts at $8,999 for 100 users, which includes the appliance, software licenses, automatic security updates and 24X7 support. The appliance can scale to support up to 2,000 users. A 30-day trial is available. Have a comment on this story? Please click "Discuss" below. If you'd like to contact Dark Reading's editors directly, send us a message.