Messaging security solutions provide protection for companies’ messaging infrastructure. The programs includes IP reputation-based anti-spam, pattern-based anti-spam, administrator defined block/allow lists, mail antivirus, zero-hour malware detection and email intrusion prevention.
Basically, a messaging-security gateway is a firewall for your e-mail. Scanning both inbound and outbound e-mail, a messaging-security gateway applies all of the e-mail-specific protections you need to do business in a spam, virus and malware-laden world. At a minimum, messaging-security gateways include four security features: spam filtering, virus and malware blocking, content filtering and message archiving.
While most vendors put antispam and antivirus scanning in their gateways, a wide variety of other messaging-oriented functions show up in these systems as well. Content filtering — looking for specific words or phrases — is a frequent feature, as is message archiving — the ability to copy the incoming or outgoing message stream to an archiving server. As part of the antispam functionality, some devices include their own spam or virus quarantine servers.
Also found fairly frequently are e-mail encryption services, ranging from transport-based encryption (such as enforcing Transport Layer Security, encryption with certain business partners) to application-layer encryption (such as signing and encrypting messages so that only the designated user can read them).
In their quest for greater differentiation in an increasingly commoditized market, vendors also are branching off into other “messaging” security functions, such as IM security.