Readers' Choice Awards '08: IT Security Products of the Year


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Antimalware, content filtering and application control


Barracuda Web Filter

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Barracuda Networks

In a market where most Web security gateways have the common features of spyware protection, content filtering and application controls, differentiators are integration, installation and configuration. And that's just where readers rated Barracuda Networks' Barracuda Web Filter highest. The product also received high scores for ROI.

"With the Barracuda Web Filter, you don't have to maintain five or six different servers. Simply, you have one appliance that can be installed in 10 minutes," says Barracuda Networks product manager Sean Heiney.

System updates are made hourly by Barracuda Central, an operations center that allows engineers to catalog browsed Web sites and provide spyware protection.

The product's URL blocking is bolstered by a URL database with more than 50 site categories. The Barracuda Web Filter, which integrates with popular LDAP directory servers like Microsoft Active Directory, also has no per user license fee. "We sell them a box. It has a recommended capacity, but they can have as many users as they'd like," Heiney says.

NOTABLE Barracuda Networks is embroiled in a patent infringement case brought by Trend Micro, partly over the use of the open-source Clam AV engine in this product and others.


McAfee Secure Web Gateway

McAfee's offerings have always focused strongly on malware prevention, so it may not come as a surprise that the vendor's Secure Web Gateway received high ratings from readers on its ability to detect known and unknown Web-based threats.

The Secure Web Gateway uses McAfee's antimalware engine, and its antispam capabilities also detect phishing URLs that may come from malicious emails.

Readers also recognized the Secure Web Gateway's alerting system, which can report on-box or forward stats to McAfee's compatible ePolicy Orchestrator (ePO).

Its Web-filtering URL database is supplied by Secure Computing's SmartFilter, and according to McAfee, the Secure Web Gateway filters Web traffic at the rate of up to 200 Mbps.

The Secure Web Gateway uses McAfee's SiteAdvisor to examine site reputation and block connections to harmful sites. Active content scanning, which allows the removal of JavaScript or ActiveX content from pages, is also a major function of the filtering engine. It also blocks instant messaging and detects outbound connections to spyware-related URLs.

NOTABLE McAfee's 2006 acquisition of SiteAdvisor added URL reputation capabilities.

This was first published in April 2008

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