McAfee announced three new products in early June 2008 to extend the VirusScan Enterprise product line - McAfee VirusScan Enterprise for Offline Virtual Images, McAfee VirusScan Enterprise for use with the SAP NetWeaver® platform, and McAfee VirusScan Enterprise for Storage.
Virtualisation has certainly caught the imagination of many in IT as its message of cheaper computing, fewer servers and greener image starts to gain traction. After all, showing your boss around a server room emptied of the excess servers or waving a reduced power bill is bound to win you some corporate Brownie points.
Indeed in some areas you could be forgiven for thinking that virtualisation is the cure for all the world's ills and Bill and Melinda Gates can pack up their foundation and spend their time looking wistfully across Lake Washington.
But what of security in this dash for virtualisation? Piling up a server with extra virtual environments is all well and good but how do you make sure the systems are secure? How do you secure a virtual computing environment?
McAfee VirusScan Enterprise for Offline Virtual Images is in response to an increase in more targeted attacks rather than the crude mass mailings we saw a few years ago and still see to a lesser extent today. No doubt this is due to the fact these mass mailings can be defeated with quite simple counter measures. According to McAfee there are on average 5 offline images for each online image, so making sure these offline images are kept patched and up to date in their dormant state is becoming more important. McAfee VirusScan Enterprise for Offline Virtual Images does just this, maintaining your level of security across a virtual estate. Updates and patches are deployed in the background to these virtual systems so they are match fit the moment they are brought online.
Coming up next is McAfee VirusScan Enterprise for use with the SAP NetWeaver® platform which does what it says on the packet. With an increase in the number of solutions that accept data directly from outside an organisation, such as CVs from potential new recruits, there needs to be a way of ensuring these are virus free. This product does just this for SAP solutions.
Finally McAfee VirusScan Enterprise for Storage does, well, er, scan and clean files for the usual soup of malware before they reach a storage device.
As the traditional desktop market for anti-malware becomes commoditised vendors clearly need new ways of adding value to their product range as well as generate more income. Whether it be solutions for virtual computing, specific enterprise applications or storage each of these is bound to create a bit more interest in the McAfee offerings from larger organisations.
This trio of products will apparently be out in beta in July 2008.