InterScan Web Security Virtual Appliance
Strengths: As a gateway solution it stops threats before they enter your network
Weaknesses: The cost. Only supprots web filtering of HTTP and FTP traffic
Verdict: Easy to set up and use. Nice complement to an integrated endpoint solution
The InterScan Web Security Virtual Appliance (IWSVA) is a gateway solution, providing protection for web-based threats via HTTP and FTP. The product is delivered as a CD but installs as a purpose-built virtual appliance.
The self-contained virtual appliance requires a 64-bit hardware platform to support its 64-bit operating systems. There are multiple deployment options, including virtual appliance, which runs on top of hypervisor technology, such as VMware, or a dedicated software appliance, which transforms a standard server into a high-performance secure web gateway appliance with a hardened operating system.
IWSVA defends against web threats with multi-layer, multi-threat protection at the internet gateway. It provides protection against anti-virus, anti-spyware, anti-phishing, web reputation, ActiveX/Java Script scanning, IM blocking and URL filtering. It accomplishes this through content filtering for potentially dangerous websites and blocking content prohibited by the organisation.
The appliance can install in transparent bridge mode, forward proxy mode, ICAP mode or reverse proxy mode, giving the user several alternatives.
Some additional features we discovered in our review include IWSVA's ability to work with cache servers that support the ICAP 1.0 standard. IWSVA also supports X-authenticated ICAP headers that are provided by supported ICAP clients, such as NetCache (5.6.2R1) and Blue Coat (SGOS 184.108.40.206). We were also pleased with the level of granularity given to control the content filtering, as options were broken into several categories.
The click to program user interface made it very easy to customise our configuration. We also liked the feature we found that let us update OS and patches on the appliance without having to drop to a shell or possess any Linux expertise.
The documentation was good and walked us through the software load without a problem. A very detailed administration manual was also included but we found we did not need to reference it as the interface was very easy to use. We also liked the reporting capabilities.
Overall, the IWSVA was easy to load, configure and use. The product could be a nice addition to a layered malware solution.