Lotus Protector for Mail Encryption 2.1 released

Announced and available for download as of this morning:

IBM Lotus Protector for Mail Encryption 2.1, a product created in partnership with PGP Corporation, builds on the legendary security features of Notes and Domino:

  • Allows any e-mail, whether internal or external, to be easily sent in a secure encrypted format
  • Integrates tightly with Notes and Domino to eliminate additional training and support requirements
  • Helps protect content from being intercepted or modified in transit
  • Saves money on alternative methods such as courier, express mail, and faxes
  • Supports flexible encryption methods and open standards, so that external recipients always have the most seamless and contextual e-mail experience
  • Extends the Lotus Protector security platform, and integrates with the optional Protector for Mail Security spam and content control solution

Providing end-to-end mail encryption, this could really help email coexistence in secure environments:

Lotus Protector for Mail Encryption Server and Lotus Protector for Mail Encryption Client will support the following e-mail clients and servers:

  • Lotus Notes 7.0.3 (7.0.4)/Domino Server 7.0.3
  • Lotus Notes 8.0.2/Domino Server 8.0.2
  • Lotus Notes 8.5 (8.5.1)/Domino Server 8.5
  • Microsoft Outlook XP SP3/Microsoft Exchange Server
  • Microsoft Outlook 2003 SP3/Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 SP3
  • Microsoft Outlook 2007 SP1/Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 SP1

Note: Support for Outlook is only with Exchange.

Interestingly, this announcement sees a new statement on version support that I haven’t seen elsewhere:

The best attempt will be made to support the latest operating system service packs released by the vendor.

Hopefully we’ll see this stated for other products too in the future.

More >

Lotus Protector 2.5 announced

IBM Lotus Protector for Mail Security 2.5 delivers spam and malware enhancements

At a glance
IBM Lotus Protector for Mail Security 2.5 gives you:

* Notes client integration
* Zero Level Analysis (ZLA)

* IBM System x hardware support

* Performance improvements

IBM Lotus Protector for Mail Security 2.5 is proven to be out-of-the-box 99% or better effective against spam and malware (as verified by independent ICSA Labs) and provides enhanced rich content filtering capabilities.

* Notes client integration – The first and only network spam filter that empowers Notes users to block future mail from specific senders — right within their in boxes — before it reaches Domino servers. User-defined blocklists let users filter content such as newsletters or advertisements that, while not strictly defined as spam, still constitutes unwanted e-mail from the user’s perspective. Additionally, users can view and manage their spam and blocked messages, as well as blocked/allowed users, directly within their Notes client interface (requires Notes 8.51, or later).

* Zero Level Analysis (ZLA) – A new innovation in spam filtering, exclusive to IBM’s technology. With ZLA, both performance (throughput) and filter efficacy are improved. Like most modern spam filters, Protector for Mail Security has IP layer filtering that discards e-mails from sender IP addresses that are virtually certain to be spam, based on a number of factors that comprise the “reputation” of the IP address used. And like most filters, it has a set of sophisticated inspection modules that test each e-mail for spam content. ZLA sits between these layers, streaming e-mails in real time for inspection, discarding e-mails at any point that they are determined to be spam. Because ZLA removes the need to fully analyze many spam e-mails or even write them to disk, it can increase the performance of the filter.

* IBM System x hardware support – Certified to run on high quality, cost-effective IBM System x hardware. Unlike competitive offerings that require proprietary hardware systems, Protector for Mail Security will run natively on this off-the-shelf hardware that offers different price points for different throughput requirements. In addition, the same Protector for Mail Security filter software can be run in virtualized environments on any VMware supported system.

* Performance – Throughput performance has improved approximately 500%, as measured by filtering incoming Internet e-mails of average size with IP layer filters turned off. Internal optimizations, clustering enhancements, and an updated Linux operating system designed for greater performance and reliability contribute to this dramatic increase in performance. IP layer pre-filtering and ZLA filtering increase this throughput even more. With cost-effective IBM System x hardware, price performance — as measured by the number of e-mails processed per hour against hardware investment — has increased by 2,000%.

Other enhancements include an updated administrator user interface, more languages and localization options, and an automatic licensing mechanism that no longer requires License Keys.

The MS3004LP Appliance from IBM Internet Security Systems (ISS) is no longer sold. However, Lotus Protector for Mail Security 2.5 supports the MS3004LP appliance. Upgrade your MS3004LP to V2.5 to gain all the enhancements and 500% performance improvement.

Lotus Protector for Mail Security continues to be the best choice for Lotus Domino customers. With 2.5, you get high quality protection against Internet threats, optimized for Lotus customers, in a way that extends the legendary security of the Notes and Domino platform.

Having been on the beta program for Lotus Protector 2.5 and used it for virus and spam filtering at Collaboration Matters, I can vouch for how effective it is as an email protection tool.  2.5 brings increased integration with the Notes client (though you will need to wait for Notes8.5.1 to make use of this), making it a more compelling proposition, especially for smaller businesses that need a solution in this area. It will be available for download today.

[Just a thought – shouldn’t that be ‘IBM Lotus Protector for Mail Security 2.5 delivers spam and malware protection enhancements’? 😉 ]

Lotus Protector announced

Ed has already posted indicating this will be announced very soon, well here it is…

IBM Lotus Protector for Mail Security 2.1, a new Lotus offering based on proven technology from IBM Internet Security Systems (ISS), protects organizations from Internet-based spam, viruses, “phishing” attacks, and other malware. Deployable as either a software-only solution on a virtual server, or as a plug-and-play appliance using separately purchased hardware from IBM ISS, Lotus Protector for Mail Security offers best-of-breed technology that is easy for Domino customers to acquire, deploy, administer, and support.

IBM Lotus Protector for Mail Security:

   * Extends the IBM Lotus Domino security model to help manage e-mails that enter and leave your organization

   * Helps preserve your organization’s reputation by inspecting and cleaning e-mail content before it is delivered to your employees

   * Shields recipients from the ever evolving nature of spam

   * Identifies suspected viruses before they are publicly known

   * Uses industry-leading features such as advanced heuristics, IP reputation filtering, and transport layer security (TLS) encryption, to address the needs of Domino customers

   * Works in concert with Domino to create an end-to-end security platform

Sizing is interesting:

Lotus Protector for Mail Security solution is available as both a hardware appliance and a virtual appliance.

Technical specifications for the hardware appliance
Rack units
Up to 10,000 users; supports a clustered environment for larger
 deployments (36,000 e-mails per hour on average).
Lotus Protector for Mail Security appliances can be clustered for
 larger installations. Centralized management and reporting is
 available through clustering and/or IBM Proventia Management

Technical specifications for the virtual appliance
Ideally suited for small to midsize businesses with fewer than
 1,000 users, and scalable to more strategic operating
 specifications as required, depending on the hardware base
 (maximum of 12,000 e-mails per hour on average)
Runs as installed software on VMware under the following guest
 operating systems: Microsoft Windows XP or 2003 VMware ESX 3.x

From a selfish point of view, I am pleased that:

  • IBM is making this available as both an appliance and VM image – perfect for me to deploy into SMBs
  • IBM is including protector in the Run Your Business licensing for BPs – this will be perfect for my needs (and I am sure lots of other consultants/BPs out there too!

More info in the Announcement Letter.

Protect me…

In the spirit of that last post

Protect me from knowing what I don’t need to know.  Protect me from even knowing that there are things to know that I don’t know.  Protect me from knowing that I decided not to know about the things that I decided not to know about.  Amen.  ~Douglas Adams, Mostly Harmless

Lord, lord, lord.  Protect me from the consequences of the above prayer.  ~Douglas Adams, Mostly Harmless