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FaceTime adds spam filter to IM Auditor software

04 February 2004  |  1758 views  |  0

Instant messaging security specialist, FaceTime, today announced the release of IM Auditor version 4.5, promising the elimination of automated 'SPIM' (spam sent via IM) attacks on financial sector IM users. The 4.5 release also combines new anti-tampering tools and enhanced IM management features to ensure full security and corporate compliance.

As a growing number of organisations embrace IM for business, spammers and hackers have been quick to exploit the potential to target IM users, seriously disrupting worker productivity and exposing significant security risks.

"We expect SPIM to reach epidemic proportions in 2004" said Glyn Baker, Director of Business Development. "SPIM is an inconvenience at best, but can and has been used to seriously threaten operational security. The significant business, efficiency and cost reduction benefits of IM cannot be ignored. IT departments must go on the offensive as they have with email SPAM and FaceTime's new IM Auditor is perfect weapon with which to do so."

Using a unique, server-based mechanism, IM Auditor 4.5 intercepts external, automatically generated SPIM before it reaches desktop users, whilst enabling legitimate communication with authorised users, such as colleagues, customers or partners. Combined with FaceTime's proven content filtering capabilities, IM Auditor's 4.5 release provides a comprehensive barrier against SPIM attack.

"Aggressive online marketers are discovering that they can create IM windows that pop up on screens to grab people's immediate attention," said Robert Mahowald, research manager, Collaborative Computing at IDC. "Disruptions caused by these unwanted instant messages take a toll on employee productivity, and employers need to work to keep spam out of IM, to retain the value of the direct, focused channel of IM communication."

IM Auditor 4.5 also ensures the integrity of captured data for corporate or regulatory compliance through a checksum-based anti-tampering mechanism that matches reviewed or exported conversations with recorded conversations. This aids organisations in combating internal breaches of trust by alerting compliance officers of any attempts to interfere with the logging of IM activity (e.g., modifying or deleting text).

IM Auditor 4.5 further extends the user policy management capabilities of previous releases and works in concert with FaceTime IM Guardian, a security gateway for IM and peer-to-peer (P2P) applications management. The combination gives businesses complete "defence-in-depth" protection that manages and secures IM and P2P communications, providing a SPIM free enterprise environment.

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