Google has released a hosted security product aimed at enterprises, capitalising on its acquisition last year of security firm Postini.
Google Web Security for Enterprise aims to prevent web-borne malware from entering enterprise networks by providing a combination of malware protection, URL filtering and policy enforcement: the latter at an individual, departmental or organisational level.
The search giant believes the product will be particularly useful for mobile workers, and is positioning the product as an alternative to using a VPN. Instead, mobile workers login through Google Apps, allowing a Google engine to automatically scan the user's activity.
Google claims that businesses can, as a result of the product, reduce the time they spend managing and patching client devices.
"Protecting off-network users used to require them to connect via a VPN when they were out of the office - often with mixed results," wrote Tim Johnson, a product marketing manager for Google, in a blog. "With this new feature, all off-network users' web traffic is automatically directed to scanning infrastructure to enforce your policies and protect their computers, requiring no action on the part of individuals."
As well as utilising the Postini software, Google is taking advantage of expertise from ScanSafe, a software-as-a-service security provider which last month won the SCMagazine Award for the best content security product.
Google's product is an early foray for the search giant into the security marketplace. Many companies, including the likes of McAfee and Symantec, offer competing anti-malware products.
Google Web Security for Enterprise is available in Europe and North America only. Google declined to reveal pricing.