September 2 2008
Now available! Lotus Protector for Mail Security 2.1 was released earlier today on a worldwide basis. From the channel announcement:
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.Last night, I posted a video link to YouTube, where you can find six minutes from Arthur Fontaine, the senior product manager for Lotus Protector. It's also worth reading his comments on the blog posting, where he explains IBM's strategy in this space in greater detail:
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
there are two additional parts of the strategy that get more compelling to customers, and of course you can't get too deep into that in a 6 minute Youtube video. The first is the simple fact that we (uniquely) own development of both pieces of the equation, so we get an opportunity to pursue vertical integration between Domino and the Protector layer. Some of the things we're workin on include integrating the "block mail from sender" agent in Notes with antispam system's user block/allow lists, and creating hooks to things like the Bayesian filters, which learn over time what an organization's unique views of spam and ham (non-spam e-mail) are. We're also studying things like extending Domino user/group management, policies, etc., so the administrative activities bridge the barriers of the current multivendor model of e-mail security. So those things aren't in the first (2.1) release of the product, but we're busy with that work in both Westford and Kassel; note that Protector is within the Domino business, and I'm long-term Domino heritage as well. We'll have news here shortly.I'm also here to tell you that my team is ready to deal, and we've started out with the aggressive stance of a 25% discount for competitive trade-up, just like we do in the Notes/Domino space. The US list price for the competitive trade-up is US$44.25/user, and that includes support as well as the first year of updates (like the signature file updates needed for both anti-spam and anti-virus).
The second part of the strategy is that Protector is a family brand, not just a product brand, so we're taking a holistic view of the types of problems enterprise e-mail customers are facing. We're working on things like comprehensive encryption over Internet links (beyond S/MIME and TLS), data loss prevention, and, as you mention, archiving and ediscovery. We're doing them in ways consistent with how we're approaching antispam (e.g., Internet encryption that's integrated with your Notes<->Notes encryption), and across the platform (e.g., your DLP and archiving doesn't fall over because your encryption gets in the way).
Let me know if I can help you with more information on this new offering from Lotus, and congratulations to the entire Protector team.