Feeds

Anti-spam tsunami hits SMEs

World + dog on the vend

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

World + dog is trying to carve extra revenues from the crowded anti-spam marketplace by targeting small business.

This week UK-based Sophos launched its Small Business Suite, a set of integrated software packages with desktop server and e-mail gateways components, designed to shield smaller companies from spam and viruses.

Three more firms are to unveil SME-orientated anti-spam products at London's InfoSec conference next week. CipherTrust, Mirapoint and Unipalm will all use the conference to promote the launch of various products and services designed to help SMEs to hold back the spam tsunami. Most are essentially cut-down, easier-to-use versions of existing enterprise products.

CipherTrust will use InfoSec to launch its IronMail S-Series appliances in Europe. S-Series appliances are marketed as offering "enterprise class email security" to the small and medium-sized business market. The technology was launched in the US in February.

Mirapoint will publicly demonstrate its all-in-one security appliance, RazorGate, for the first time in Europe at Infosec. Launched in January, RazorGate appliances are designed to protet small businesses and branch offices from spam, virus and hacker attacks.

Meanwhile, distie Unipalm will use InfoSec to promote its managed security services package, SafeAnet. SafeAnet offers anti-virus, anti-spam, web content filtering to home workers and small businesses. The service runs on Check Point Safe@Office appliances managed by Unipalm.

Aside from the packaging, the products from these vendors differ in taking either a software (Sophos), appliance (CipherTrust and Mirapoint) or service (Unipalm) approach to the problem. Each segment is already populated by numerous vendors, all jockeying for attention. Last month analyst Gartner predicted that the 40 vendors in the anti-spam market will shrink to fewer than 10 by the end of the year, Techweb reports.

Too many players

If anything, Gartner under-estimates the number of players in the anti-spam market. Every security vendor we can think of - with the exception of Cisco Systems - has some kind of anti-spam product. But accepting Gartner's argument that the enterprise market is consolidating then it's no surprise that even vendors who will probably survive the shake-out are eyeing the SME market for growth.

A poll of nearly 4,000 small and medium-sized businesses by Sophos shows that 80 per cent of companies found the flood of spam made them less productive at work, yet only 28 per cent have any form of anti-spam filtering in place. As spam volumes increase, the need for anti-spam products grows. Entry costs for vendors are low, and so we're seeing a growth in the anti-spam market comparable to that of the anti-virus market in the early 1990s.

One of the difficulties reporting of this market is there's little or no intelligence on the effectiveness of rival products. We harbour a nagging suspicion that many commercial products are little more effective than open source or Internet community initiatives that have been going on for some time.

Of those anti-spam products we've tried (admittedly not very many) only Spam Assassin is any good at weeding out bounced messages from AV sensors or notices that a "virus has been removed from your email", for example. Letters from readers tell us we're far from alone in seeing the volume of such messages rise to rival that of regular spam. ®

Related stories

One third of email now spam
Anti-spam filters kill legitimate emails
AV vendors muscle in on anti-spam
The trouble with anti-virus
Anti-virus companies: tenacious spammers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
Doctor Who's Flatline: Cool monsters, yes, but utterly limp subplots
We know what the Doctor does, stop going on about it already
'Cowardly, venomous trolls' threatened with TWO-YEAR sentences for menacing posts
UK government: 'Taking a stand against a baying cyber-mob'
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Arab States make play for greater government control of the internet
Nerds told to get lost in last-minute power grab bid at UN meeting
Zippy one-liners, broken promises: Doctor Who on the Orient Express
Series finally hits stride, but Clara's U-turn is baffling
Don't bother telling people if you lose their data, say Euro bods
You read that right – with the proviso that it's encrypted
Apple SILENCES Bose, YANKS headphones from stores
The, er, Beats go on after noise-cancelling spat
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.