Security appliances may seam like a stretch for Netgear, but the ProSecure brand is the outgrowth of the company's purchase of security outfit CP Secure late last year. CP Secure's enterprise-oriented Web and email security technology is the basis of Netgear's move to "bring content security to the SMB," Leung explained.
To compete against security appliances from Barracuda and new-entrant Cisco, Netgear will put CP Secure's "high-end software" -- using Kaspersky Lab's full list of 1.5 million virus signatures, for example -- on inexpensive hardware built by Netgear, Leung said, and bring the combination to SMBs at a reasonable price.
Sitting between your company's firewall and the rest of your network, the STM line blocks spam, removes email-borne malware, and -- unlike many similar security appliances -- also provides protection against Web-based malware in a single device. To make that happen, the STM line scans files and data streams in parallel to reduce latency, which can affect Web browsing, if not email. While larger companies might use different solutions for all these threats, SMBs need both kinds of protection. (While Leung would not say what Netgear is doing to address internal security, the said the company "would be remiss if it wasn't working on it.")
Netgear is also trying to simplify the pricing model to cover the size of the box and licenses for Web, e-mail, and maintenance and support, with no per-seat licensing costs. Street prices for the STM150 starts at $1,000.
Unlike many of Netgear's other products, the STM line will be sold only by specialized security resellers equipped to support the products, not through retail stores. In addition, Leung said, "Weve trained a specialized support team of approximately 70 marketing and engineering people. We're like a startup inside a larger company."