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Risk

2/9/2010
07:59 PM
Jake Widman
Jake Widman
Commentary
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Verizon Introduces 'Security-As-A-Service' Packages

The new Total Protection offerings are intended to protect SMBs against all five forms of security threats at an affordable monthly rate.

The new Total Protection offerings are intended to protect SMBs against all five forms of security threats at an affordable monthly rate.A recent study by security vendor McAfee found that midsize companies suffer more security breaches, on average, than larger companies do, and that cyberattacks on such businesses increased 322% from 2008 to 2009. To address the problem, Verizon has partnered with McAfee to launch two new "Security-as-a-Service" protection packages, aimed at businesses with roughly 20-1,000 employees.

Security threats commonly come in five forms, according to McAfee: network, endpoint (infected workstations), Web (sites hosting malware or performing redirects), data, and e- mail (spam). The new Total Protection packages address all five vectors, eliminating the need for businesses to assemble multiple products to meet the threats.

"One of the things we feel strongly about is enabling our customers to be successful in their businesses," Verizon SMB Solutions marketing director Patrick Sullivan told InformationWeek SMB. "Our partnership with McAfee gives our customers the comprehensive solutions they need." The solutions leverage McAfee's SaaS infrastructure to provide antivirus, antispyware, antispam, Web filtering, and firewall protection.

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The Protection Packages come in two varieties: one, the Total Protection Service-Advanced, lets companies implement a security system without purchasing on-premises equipment -- the solution is hosted within the McAfee SaaS infrastructure. It provides a simple Web-based console management tool with which any employee can establish and update security policies and configurations. The service costs $3.50 per user per month.

The second version is called Total Protection for Secure Business. It's intended for businesses that have a security specialist or IT manager on staff and want a more customizable and flexible solution. This solution is installed on the business's network, allowing more local control -- it costs $5.00 per user per month.

Both packages require a one-year commitment, but payment is just by the month, so there isn't a big cost to get started. "All of our competitors require an annual upfront license," asserts Sullivan. Verizon Business provides support before, during, and after deployment.

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