Security appliance spawns managed service

St. Bernard Software releases new, on-demand reporting to enable mix and match IT security provision.

IT security managers now have the choice of taking on a hybrid security system that filters internet traffic internally and manages reporting with a hosted service.

The combination is part of a new offering launched this week by security provider, St. Bernard Software. It has introduced the Managed Enterprise Reporting Service (MERS) for its iPrism internet-filtering appliance.

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The offering is designed to allow IT managers to deploy multiple internet filtering appliances in a distributed environment and centralise reporting capabilities with the added business continuity benefit of securely backing up management data.

Andrew Lochart, St. Bernard vice president told IT PRO the MERS service for iPrism was the first step towards delivering a company roadmap that allows IT managers to mix and match the delivery of a robust security infrastructure, with lower upfront costs.

"If you look at companies that have been successful following one or another approach - like MessageLabs or Postini for managed services or IronPort or CipherTrust for appliances, for example - there are advantages and disadvantages to each approach," he said.

Lochart argued: "With managed services, the advantages are around scalability and the ability to manage and add capacity, but appliances running on your own network offer the customer control."

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He said this new launch would mark a strategy that is aimed at giving organisations direct control and integration of their network security on-premise, but with the components that require greater scale provided 'in the cloud'.

The hardware component of the hybrid offering polices and prevents inappropriate online employee activity, while MERS stores reports in the St. Bernard managed data centres, providing secure backup of important data and boosting appliance performance by relieving the system of reporting processes.

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