Symantec plans this week to enter the growing e-mail security-appliance market with its Symantec Mail Security 8000 line.
The series consists of three systems: the 8240 and 8260 for network gateways and the 8160 system for network perimeters. Symantec injected the boxes with its own anti-virus technology and the Brightmail software it acquired last year.
Symantec joins the ranks of Mirapoint, CipherTrust, and Borderware Technologies in offering an e-mail security appliance. Although Symantec is now competing with them, it will continue to resell such appliances from CipherTrust and Borderware, according to Daniel Freeman, product manager for Symantec's 8200 product line.
E-mail security appliances are becoming more popular because they improve e-mail performance by removing unwanted e-mail before it gets to the e-mail server. At the same time, companies are dealing with increasing amounts of spam and new compliance regulations, so it makes sense to use these appliances, said Chris Christiansen, vice president at IDC.
Security appliances are easier to install and present fewer compatibility or interoperability issues than running separate anti-virus and spam filtering programs, Freeman said.