SOURCE: Symantec


June 16, 2009 08:00 ET

Symantec Launches MessageLabs Instant Messaging Security Service

Service Provides Businesses Protection, Management and Control of Public IM Tools

CUPERTINO, CA--(Marketwire - June 16, 2009) - Symantec Corp. (NASDAQ: SYMC) today announced the launch of MessageLabs Instant Messaging Security Service (IMSS), a comprehensive instant messaging (IM) security, control and management service enabling businesses to adopt a safer, auditable use of public IM networks.

Gartner(1) estimates penetration rates for enterprise IM adoption at 35-40%, with enterprises citing security as the main reason that IM is blocked internally. Uncontrolled use of public IM networks exposes organizations to risks that can compromise productivity, profitability, business continuity and customer trust. Accidental or deliberate data leakage, inappropriate use of IM and regulatory non-compliance are very real dangers. MessageLabs Instant Messaging Security Service enables administrators to gain full control over IM use across the business and enforce acceptable usage policies, at group or individual user levels, to confidently allow enterprise use of AOL's AIM, Yahoo! Mail and Microsoft MSN. In addition it establishes corporate best practice to mitigate risks associated with unsecure public use of IM in the workplace.

Business tools, such as email and the Internet, act as a window for cybercriminals to enter through, with more opportunities appearing as adoption levels rise, and IM is no different. MessageLabs Intelligence research highlights that threats over IM are on the rise, especially through URL links included within an instant message that lead to malicious websites. In late 2008, one in every 200 URLs included in an instant message led to a website supporting malicious content, such as a virus, Trojan or spyware. Today, one in every 78 URLs on IM is malicious. To protect businesses from all threats, every instant message sent to, or originating inside, an organization is scanned by Skeptic™, MessageLabs predictive technology.

"More immediate than email, more versatile than the telephone, organizations are increasingly forgetting Instant Messaging's legacy as a consumer tool and accept it and its benefits as a credible business tool," said Adrian Chamberlain, Senior Vice President, SaaS Group, Symantec. "The Instant Messaging Security Service provides protection and control functionality to the public IM services, making them viable enterprise tools with the necessary visibility and accountability for today's regulatory needs."

The fully managed, fully customizable service provides a suite of capabilities including anti-malware, URL filtering, content control, message logging and reporting. All instant messages are logged and can be sent to an existing archiving solution to aid the traceability of all public IM communications, equipping organizations to satisfy legal discovery requirements and archive compliance with relevant regulations.

Key Features of MessageLabs Instant Messaging Security Service include:

--  Operates with market leading public IM networks
--  Delivers multi-layer protection against known and unknown converged
    threats propagated via public IM networks
--  Incorporates intuitive policy-building capability, including stacking
    of multiple rules
--  Detailed reporting functionality, fully integrated with all other
    MessageLabs services
--  Doesn't require downloading of an agent or software to your network
--  Simple to set up, use and administer, and to introduce firewall rules
    that prevent employees bypassing the service

Available now, the Instant Messaging Security Service further enhances the MessageLabs portfolio of Software as a Service (SaaS) security solutions developed to protect, control, encrypt and archive communications across email, web and IM services.

(1) Overcome the top five roadblocks to instant-messaging adoption by David Mario Smith, Gartner, April 2009

About Symantec

Symantec is a global leader in providing security, storage and systems management solutions to help consumers and organizations secure and manage their information-driven world. Our software and services protect against more risks at more points, more completely and efficiently, enabling confidence wherever information is used or stored. More information is available at

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