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Symantec Announces Updates to Data Management, Protection and Endpoint Security Solutions

Symantec Announces Updates Including Endpoint Protection 12, Protection Center 2.0, and Enterprise Vault 10

Symantec Vision Conference

Symantec, at its Vision user conference that took place in Las Vegas this week, announced a series of updates to some of its core product offerings, spanning across its Endpoint Protection solutions to Enterprise Vault Archiving Software. Symantec CEO Enrique Salem (left) announced the updates and detailed some of the new and upcoming features and technologies in a keynote address in front of a large audience gathered at Ceasar’s Palace where the conference took place.

Included in the announcements were Symantec Endpoint Protection 12 and Symantec Protection Center 2.0, solutions designed to combat the increasing number of complex cyber threats in both traditional and virtual environments. Symantec announced that Symantec Endpoint Protection 12 is now available as a public beta. Both products are part of the Symantec Security Framework portfolio of security products and services.

According to Symantec’s Internet Security Threat Report, in 2010, attackers unleashed more than 286 million distinct malicious programs, an average of more than nine new threats every second of every day. With the latest releases announced this week, Symantec is aiming to offer an advanced level of protection to help its customers combat these threats.

Symantec Endpoint Protection 12: The latest version of Symantec Endpoint Protection 12 is designed to detect and block sophisticated new threats sooner, more accurately, and with greater performance than before. Symantec Endpoint Protection leverages Insight, Symantec's community and cloud-based reputation technology, to block new and unknown threats. By blocking risky files with a poor reputation from entering an organization, Symantec Endpoint Protection provides a first line of defense in the battle against advanced persistent threats. Built for speed and effectiveness in virtual environments, internally-conducted testing of the software in heavily consolidated virtual environments shows a 90 percent reduction in disk usage, thus delivering up to a tenfold increase in consolidation density. Symantec continues to work closely with VMware to take full advantage of virtualization awareness and introspection capabilities based on VMware vShield™ technology, and Symantec Endpoint Protection 12 is the first step along the optimization path for virtual and cloud environments.

Symantec Endpoint Protection Small Business Edition 12, also now available as a public beta, will offer small organizations with limited IT staff and resources a solution they can easily deploy. Symantec says that the solution can be setup in less than 20 minutes (on average in a less than 50 user environment). The new versions are scheduled to be generally available later this year.

Large and small organizations differ in the complexity of environments and the expertise required to deploy and manage protection which is why Symantec provides different offerings based on those organizational needs. For mid- to large-sized organizations, Symantec offers Symantec Endpoint Protection 12 for on-premises deployment. For smaller organizations, Symantec offers both on-premises and cloud-based solutions with Symantec Endpoint Protection Small Business Edition and Symantec Endpoint Protection.cloud, respectively, providing customers with flexibility of choice and freedom of deployment to best meet their business needs.

Symantec Protection Center 2.0: Effective protection against today's complex attacks requires correlated visibility into multiple security products along with actionable intelligence to reduce risk and simplify management. Without a way to summarize and prioritize risk factors across products, groups and regions, organizations can easily overlook high-severity threats and compromise their security posture. Symantec Protection Center 2.0 is a centralized security management console that will allow organizations to identify emerging threats, prioritize tasks and accelerate time to protection based on relevant, actionable intelligence.

Enrique Salem To identify emerging threats across local and global environments, Symantec Protection Center will offer a centralized view across the Symantec security portfolio and third-party products through three levels of integration -- single sign-on, data collection and process automation. Organizations will be able to extract local intelligence from their security solutions to identify trends across areas such as malware, spam and assets. Symantec Protection Center delivers context-aware security management by correlating data from enterprise security products along with early warning alerts from the Symantec's Global Intelligence Network, one of the world's leading commercial cyber-intelligence communities. Symantec Protection Center 2.0 is fully integrated with Symantec Endpoint Protection 12 and will be available for existing Symantec customers of integrated products at no additional charge later this year.

“With the right protection, virtual environments can be as secure, or even more secure, than traditional infrastructure as a result of increased standardization, visibility, automation and control available in high-density environments. Symantec Endpoint Protection defends against all types of attacks and is optimized for performance on VMware View™ and VMware vSphere,”
said Francis deSouza, Senior Vice President, Enterprise Security Group, Symantec.

eDiscovery, Data Loss Prevention, and Encryption to Define Information Governance

In addition to the Endpoint Protection and Protection Center announcements, Symantec announced Symantec Enterprise Vault 10, Enterprise Vault.cloud, and Cloud Storage for Enterprise Vault to help organizations manage and discover their information with speed, efficiency and scale, on-premise and in the cloud. Symantec Enterprise Vault 10 software will add new integration with Symantec's data loss prevention and encryption technologies to archive and discover organizations' information without compromising confidential information, in addition to allowing organizations to discover data stored in the cloud and from social networks. Symantec's Software-as-a-Service-based Enterprise Vault.cloud will offer unlimited cloud storage for e-mail, with rapid search and access, for a flat fee per mailbox per month.

As more law firms and eDiscovery service providers are required to adopt more formal information management processes, they will be faced with increased costs associated with discovery over those that have an efficient information governance strategy and archiving solution available.

"Information streams are evolving from email to social networks and archives are moving from on-premise to the cloud, causing IT administrators to lose sleep over managing information and lawyers to debate new retention policies," said Brian Dye, vice president of product management, Symantec.

Classifying Specific Emails

Enterprise Vault 10 is adding Data Classification Service (DCS) as a new feature that leverages Symantec's data loss prevention technology to analyze email content and metadata to automatically classify the email. The software can then assign the appropriate archiving and retention policy for that message or flag the message to be reviewed for compliance reasons. Classifications can also be used as filters to speed up the search and review process for eDiscovery. Additionally, customers who have implemented Symantec Data Loss Prevention can share classification policies to simplify the automated classification of information. Enterprise Vault also adds new integration with Symantec's encryption technologies to allow organizations to classify, store, and discover encrypted information.

Social Media Archiving

Through new partnerships with CommonDesk, FaceTime, Hanzo Archives and Socialware, Enterprise Vault 10 automatically archives social media interactions for compliance, eDiscovery or corporate governance purposes. Organizations can comply with requirements for social media communications without restricting or banning the use of those tools.

On-premise, Hybrid, and in the Cloud

Symantec said it will continue to enhance its Symantec.cloud email archiving service under the name Symantec Enterprise Vault.cloud, beginning in June 2011. The service help organizations address the challenges of email storage management, legal discovery, and regulatory compliance, with the ease and efficiency of a purely hosted archiving service. With no hardware, software, or plug-ins to install and maintain, this solution offers unlimited email storage and retention in secure enterprise-class data centers for a flat fee per mailbox per month.

Symantec also announced Enterprise Vault Cloud Storage for Nirvanix, a hybrid model designed to make using the cloud for archiving as easy as managing on-premise storage while also lowering costs. The Symantec connector for Enterprise Vault Cloud Storage for Nirvanix optimizes how businesses use the cloud to archive information.

In addition to the product annoucements described above, Symantec shared additional details on the company's vision and strategy.

Symantec Vision conferences have been held for more than 11 years, and are primary targeted to help customers and partners (though anyone can register to attend) with the hands-on training, certification testing, networking opportunities, technical expertise, and updates on the latest industry trends.

Disclosure: Transportation and Accomodations were provided to me by Symantec to attend the Symantec Vision conference under the terms that there was no obligation to provide any coverage.

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For more than 10 years, Mike Lennon has been closely monitoring the threat landscape and analyzing trends in the National Security and enterprise cybersecurity space. In his role at SecurityWeek, he oversees the editorial direction of the publication and is the Director of several leading security industry conferences around the world.