SOURCE: Websense, Inc.

Websense, Inc.

March 08, 2011 08:45 ET

Websense Shows Clear Leadership With Security, Productivity, and Compliance Tools for the Social Web

Websense Responds Directly to Security Professionals' Demand for Allowing Use of the Social Web While Tackling the Risks of Malware, Exploits, Productivity Loss, Bandwidth Usage, Data Loss, and Data Theft

SAN DIEGO, CA--(Marketwire - March 8, 2011) - (NASDAQ: WBSN) -- Websense recently polled more than 275 security professionals for their views on social media and the overwhelming response was that they understand the need to allow properties like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Wikis for collaboration, research, and networking. Furthermore, more than 50 percent of the Fortune 100 now use Facebook and other parts of the social Web to market and develop their businesses. But, despite the real business benefits and desire to allow access, the Websense poll shows more than 45 percent restrict these tools out of concern for security; more than 40 percent based on productivity concerns including excessive use of bandwidth; and more than 30 percent because of concern for data loss.

"IT is under pressure to open up access to the social Web," said Michael Suby, VP of Research at Stratecast (a Division of Frost & Sullivan). "However, many businesses are legitimately concerned about the impact on productivity, risk of corporate data leakage, and influx of malicious content that is associated with social media channels. They need security measures that allow them to leverage social media on their terms."

IT security professionals find themselves in a quandary because legacy solutions do not understand the actual content and data found on social media sites, and therefore cannot stop the threats lurking within. Recent Websense research found that more than 70 percent of today's threats are planted on popular and legitimate websites, including many social Web properties; and more than 52 percent of malware is now targeted at stealing confidential data. Malicious links abound on popular company and celebrity Facebook pages. Meanwhile, easy-to-use kits costing as little as US$25 that allow anyone to create malicious Facebook applications to infect users and open the door to data theft have hit the internet.

Legacy solutions like antivirus and firewalls manage social Web properties by making social networking sites static and unable to accept dynamic content. But taking away the dynamic nature of social media sites eviscerates the core benefits of collaboration and networking -- and turns IT into a disabler of business potential. Additionally, IT professionals are increasingly tasked with ensuring that their organization's own social Web presence is safe from exploits, presenting IT staff with the daunting task of manually dealing with a growing flood of user-generated content.

While the social Web threat is very real -- recent Websense research found that nearly 40 percent of Facebook status updates have links and 10 percent of those links contain either spam or malware -- there are steps that IT can take today to safely embrace social media. Websense is leading the market with a modern approach that thousands of customers are already using to take advantage of the social Web with reduced risk and increased productivity. The award-winning and multi-patented core technology for dealing with threats and real-time content -- including data in the social Web -- is ACE, the Websense® Advanced Classification Engine backed by and integrated with the Websense ThreatSeeker™ Network.

ACE and the ThreatSeeker Network power the Websense TRITON™ Security Gateway Anywhere and Websense TRITON Defensio™, key solutions that help security professionals protect and manage their organization's use of the social Web as well as their organizational presence and pages on the social Web.

Unlike solutions that simply seek to "turn off" the social Web, remove its collaboration benefits, and try to manage it in non-practical and non-scalable ways, the Websense TRITON Security Gateway Anywhere scales to any size organization that wants to "turn on" the benefits of social media while preventing threats and reducing the risk of data loss and productivity loss. Core social Web capabilities of the TRITON Security Gateway are the ability to:

  • Stop exploits and data-theft attacks on social media that evade antivirus and reputation systems (like the koobface campaign, rogue Facebook applications, and malicious Facebook phishing exploits).
  • Create user and group policies with time of day, quota, and bandwidth controls for 95 content categories and thousands of applications to allow efficient and appropriate use of the social Web.
  • Monitor and control what data can be posted to social Web sites using thousands of regulations, tens of thousands of data types, and exact-data matching capabilities to preserve compliance, regulatory control, and governance, while preventing data theft.

"We currently allow access to the social Web (SaaS and social networks) at Addison Avenue in a limited capacity; our marketing and e-commerce groups see dynamic social networking sites as a critical business function," said Phil Romero, senior security architect, Addison Avenue Federal Credit Union. "The Websense gateway is the kind of key component that gives us that visibility as to whether the activity being done is productive or a hindrance. My biggest security concern, being a financial institution is the loss of data. Websense is key to making sure that the information that needs to stay within the organization stays within the organization and doesn't get out there by accident or exploit."

Many organizations also need to protect and more efficiently secure their brand presence and properties "on" the social Web. TRITON Defensio, which was recently showcased at DEMO Spring 2011 and will be used by Context Optional in their leading social Web management platform, complements TRITON Security Gateway Anywhere. TRITON Defensio resides within the very fabric of the social Web, behind the closed gates of many social networks. While feeding ThreatSeeker with intelligence, TRITON Defensio leverages ACE for threat, brand, reputation, liability, and productivity protection. TRITON Defensio:

  • Notifies, prevents, and allows for automatic removal of malicious links or content posted to user-generated content properties including Facebook, blogs, and user forums. The TRITON Defensio application programming interface is available for nine social media platforms and hundreds of sites have built their own custom TRITON Defensio implementation.
  • Automatically catches and prevents comment spam, reducing the cumbersome and manual nature of user generated content site administration.
  • Enforces acceptable use and content control for social Web properties, including removal or redaction of defamatory content.

"Websense is positioned to help. The company has the threat intelligence, deep content inspection capabilities, and multi-threaded defenses that enable businesses to efficiently create social Web presences and open up access to the social Web without taking on unnecessary risks," says Suby.

With tools like TRITON Security Gateway Anywhere and Websense TRITON Defensio, only Websense is able to provide end-to-end security for the social Web. For more information on Websense social Web security, please visit www.websense.com/content/web-2.0-solutions.aspx. To download Websense TRITON Defensio, visit www.websense.com/facebook.

About Websense, Inc.

Websense, Inc. (NASDAQ: WBSN), a global leader in unified Web security, email security, and data loss prevention (DLP) solutions, delivers the best content security for modern threats at the lowest total cost of ownership to tens of thousands of enterprise, mid-market and small organizations around the world. Distributed through a global network of channel partners and delivered as software, appliance and Security-as-a-Service (SaaS), Websense content security solutions help organizations leverage Web 2.0 and cloud communication, collaboration, and social media while protecting from advanced persistent threats, preventing the loss of confidential information and enforcing internet use and security policies. Websense is headquartered in San Diego, California with offices around the world. For more information, visit www.websense.com.

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