Essential Guide

Security Readers' Choice Awards 2013

A comprehensive collection of articles, videos and more, hand-picked by our editors

Best of Web security 2013

Readers pick the top Web security products in 2013: Inbound and outbound content filtering, URL filtering and application control (IM, P2P).

Gold: Websense Web Security Gateway, Websense Inc.

Websense's Web Security Gateway has moved into the top spot in our 2013 Readers' Choice Awards, following its bronze win in 2012. This year Websense's Web Security Gateway outscored other Web security products in every category including granular, flexible policy creation and enforcement (URL filtering, application control); detection of known and unknown Web-based threats; and customizable reporting and alerts. Readers applauded the company and its technology, saying "it is excellent," "great solutions" and "meets my organization's needs." However, one user noted that it's "not as flexible as we need."

Web Security Gateway received the highest marks for ease of installation, configuration and administration of the product; vendor service and support; and return on investment, just eking past the silver winner in this category. Websense features a dashboard with forensic reporting capabilities, data capture for SIEM and social media controls.

Web Security Gateway uses the company's Advanced Classification Engine and Intelligence ThreatSeeker Cloud to provide real-time threat data and analysis of Web pages and forensics reporting. Users can upgrade to Web Security Gateway Anywhere for data loss protection.

Expert market reflection on category dynamics:

"The Web is the primary channel for attacks against both clients and servers. Therefore, it is crucial that organizations take steps to protect themselves from drive-by downloads, HTML5-oriented threats, and malicious mobile code on the user side while simultaneously keeping the attackers at bay and maintaining integrity of their Web applications on the server side." 

-- Pete Lindstrom, principal and vice president of research, Spire Security

Silver winner:  Blue Coat Systems ProxySG appliances, Blue Coat Systems, Inc. 90-100 words

Blue Coat Systems' ProxySG appliances won the silver award this year, earning high marks for their granular, flexible policy creation and enforcement as well as detection of known Web-based threats. The technology also received high scores for its return on investment. "It is easy to use, but time consuming to configure,"according to one reader.

Features include user authentication, Web filtering, data loss prevention, inspection, and visibility of SSL-encrypted traffic, according to the company using Encrypted Tap for ProxySG, which requires a separate license.

Bronze winner:  Symantec Web Security.cloud, Symantec Corp.

Symantec's Web Security.cloud service (formerly Symantec Cloud Web URL Filter), which enables companies to control employee access to the Web, earned the bronze this year in the Web Security category. Users liked the product's ease of configuration and administration. Comments from readers polled on Symantec's Web Security.cloud overall and its support services ranged from "good" and "okay" to "favorable."

Organizations can use this Symantec service to enforce Web security policies, block access to file types and Web sites -- at certain times of day, if needed -- protect bandwidth and receive reports on Web activities.

This was first published in October 2013

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