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McAfee Email Protection, Security for Email Servers: Product overview

Expert Karen Scarfone reviews the McAfee Email Protection and McAfee Security for Email Servers products that are used for monitoring, blocking and quarantining email messages.

McAfee offers two email security gateway products: McAfee Email Protection and McAfee Security for Email Servers. These products monitor an organization's emails and block or quarantine emails that could pose a theat. Examples of typical prohibited content include spam, malware and phishing attempts.

Product versions

The two products complement each other and do not overlap when it comes to deployment models. The McAfee Email Protection product is available for cloud architectures, local hardware appliance deployments, virtual appliance deployments and hybrid architectures. McAfee Security for Email Servers is available for on-server deployment for Microsoft Exchange and IBM (Lotus) Domino mail servers only on selected Windows platforms. The Microsoft Exchange version is supported for Exchange Server 2013, 2010, 2007 and 2013. The Lotus Domino version is supported for Lotus Domino 9.x and 8.5.x.

Security capabilities

Both the McAfee Email Protection and McAfee Security for Email Servers products offer the basic security capabilities expected of email security gateways: antivirus, antimalware, antiphishing and antispam. In addition, both products support the use of threat intelligence feeds from McAfee, and both products provide data loss prevention (DLP) capabilities for outbound email messages. The McAfee Email Protection product has advanced capabilities, including executable sandboxing and what is referred to as "reverse engineering," although the use of this term in the context of email security is not explained in the McAfee technical materials.

Licensing

McAfee Email Protection has subscription licenses available on a per-user basis. For information on free trials of McAfee Email Protection, see McAfee's website.

McAfee Security for Email Servers has subscription licenses available, but they are priced per node instead of per user. Free trials of McAfee Security for Email Servers are downloadable from McAfee's website. However, as of this writing, the free trial for Lotus Domino is for version 7.5 only, so organizations looking for a Lotus Domino solution may need to contact McAfee directly to request a newer version of the free trial software.

Conclusion

When the McAfee Email Protection and McAfee Security for Email Servers products are considered collectively, they support all available email security gateway deployment models: cloud, local hardware appliance, virtual appliance, hybrid and on-server deployments. Organizations of nearly any size can easily acquire and scale the cloud, virtual appliance, hybrid and on-server deployment models to meet their email security needs. One question that remains unanswered is the details of the McAfee Email Protection local hardware appliances; organizations interested in hardware appliances for email security gateways should contact McAfee for additional information on model specifications, capabilities and prices.

McAfee Email Protection and McAfee Security for Email Servers offer the fundamental security features typically provided by email security gateways. In terms of advanced capabilities, however, the McAfee Email Protection product is significantly more sophisticated.

Organizations that do not require the full range of advanced capabilities offered by some email security gateways may have their needs met by one of the McAfee products. Because the McAfee Email Protection product offers all the same security features as the McAfee Security for Email Servers product, plus additional advanced features, in most cases, the McAfee Email Protection product should be favored over the McAfee Security for Email Servers product.

Next Steps

In part one of this series, learn the basics of email security gateways in the enterprise

In part two of this series, read about the enterprise use cases for email security gateways

In part three of this series, find out about the purchasing criteria for email security gateway products

In part four of this series, compare the best email security gateways in the industry

This was last published in December 2015

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