Sophos Equips Businesses to Go Virtual with New Email Security Appliance Image

Sophos Press Release

Businesses reduce operational costs with security and data protection from Sophos's all-in-one virtual email appliance


Global IT security and data protection company Sophos today announced the availability of its Virtual Email Security Appliance – the first virtual security appliance to bring strong security, data protection, and administration ease to the latest VMware virtual environments. This new virtual appliance delivers on the growing popularity of businesses seeking cost savings, responsiveness, scalability, and continuity through virtualization from a trusted brand in the industry.

A member of the highly acclaimed Sophos Email Security and Data Protection product line, the new virtual email appliance brings the same integrated protection and simplified management of Sophos's hardware appliances to VMWare virtualized environments – providing a uniquely integrated solution that combines data loss prevention (DLP) and email encryption with proactive spam and malware protection.

"Businesses are saving considerable time and effort virtualizing parts of their data centers but have been traditionally faced with limited options for comprehensive email security," said Chris Kraft, Vice President of Product Management at Sophos. "We believe the Sophos Virtual Email Appliance provides organizations with the most complete option for email security, providing reliable protection against all forms of spam and malware while also addressing the latest demands in safeguarding data through our patent-pending SPX encryption and DLP capabilities. All of these capabilities are delivered through our exclusive managed email security appliance platform, which provides full 24x7 monitoring of email traffic and system health. With our offering, we are confident our customers and the market will be able to achieve top security and data protection with less administrative burden, greater peace of mind, and significant savings."

Benefits of New Sophos Virtual Email Security Appliances

  • Rapid provisioning, responsiveness, and change management using pre-configured virtual machine profiles and a standard Open Virtualization Format (OVF)distribution file
  • Proactive threat protection via Sophos's Behavioral Genotype® technology that provides unique anti-malware detection of zero-day threats
  • Zero setup, offline accessible data protection with integrated SPX email encryption and DLP utilizing pre-packaged sensitive data intelligence supplied and updated via SophosLabs
  • Clutter-free inboxes with Sophos anti-spam technologies such as Sender Genotype and Live in-the-cloud anti-spam lookups that block over 99% of spam
  • Automation of most routine maintenance tasks with Sophos's unique managed appliance experience service that includes automatic updates, monitoring, alerting, and remote remediation if needed
  • Improved IT efficiency through a streamlined 3-clicks-to-anywhere task-based administration interface that relies on wizards to make policy and configuration simple
  • Complete interoperability and clustering with Sophos's hardware appliances and other Sophos security products

The new virtual email appliance is one of many Sophos initiatives focused on supporting the virtualized data center and endpoints with additional virtual appliance products slated for later this year.

Sophos customers and analysts such as Gartner agree that virtualization is much more than a tactical cost-cutting trend. Gartner aptly notes that virtualization is creating a strategic shift in overall IT modernization with virtual machines improving responsiveness and delivery within an enterprise 10, 20, or even 30 times faster than traditional hardware and software server solutions.

"The virtualization direction from Sophos matches UBC's strategy, allowing us to use our standard Virtual Server offering to host their email appliance (spam filter)," said Michael Thorson, Director of Infrastructure at the University of British Columbia. "It also enables us to move from eight outdated, stand-alone servers, to three new, higher-powered virtual servers. This not only saves UBC thousands of dollars in capital expenditures, it also creates a more manageable environment without having to worry about hardware upgrades going forward."

According to VMWare, server virtualization allows organizations to be more efficient reducing hardware and operating costs by as much as 50% and energy costs by 80% all while reducing the time it takes to provision new servers by up to 70%.

"We've been using the Sophos Email Security Appliance since early 2009 alongside other Sophos solutions and all the solutions continue to do exactly what Sophos promised – stop viruses, malware, and spam, and protect confidential information with minimal administration," said John Gog, Network System Administrator at the City of Birmingham. "The virtual email appliance fits in well with our increasing virtualized environment. It performs with the same reliability as the hardware appliance while providing operational savings by eliminating the costs associated with a physical device."

In 2010, the Sophos Email Security Appliance was recognized by several independent industry test centers. NetworkWorld reviewers concluded that Sophos has a "clear vision for the future of DLP" and a "very practical understanding of the role of DLP in a modern organization."SC Magazine named the Sophos Email Security Appliance as the 'Best Buy' of the group test, which included Fortinet, McAfee, PGP, Proofpoint, Trend Micro, and several others. Sophos earned a 5-out-of-five stars rating for its top-notch features, ease of use, performance, documentation, support, and value for the money.

"As a security solutions provider, adding the latest Virtual Email Security Appliance to our security solutions portfolio gives our customers a broader selection of which email security solution best suits their needs while providing my business the opportunity to consult and service them," said Mike Bergstrom, VP of Sales and Marketing at RJS Software. "Over the last year, there has definitely been an increase in customers inquiring about the pros and cons of virtualization and if it makes sense for their business. With the positive feedback that the Sophos Virtual Email Appliance has received, many customers will appreciate the balance between protection and performance, not to mention the cost savings with the elimination of hardware maintenance."

Availability and Pricing

The Sophos Virtual Email Appliance is sold on a per user subscription license (multi-year, sector, and bundle discounts apply) and includes updates, and 24x7x365 technical support. The pricing structure mirrors that of the physical appliance minus the cost of the hardware cost.

Existing Email Security Appliance customers can tap this latest virtual offering using their existing email appliance license.

More than 100 million users in 150 countries rely on Sophos’ complete security solutions as the best protection against complex threats and data loss. Simple to deploy, manage, and use, Sophos’ award-winning encryption, endpoint security, web, email, mobile and network security solutions are backed by SophosLabs - a global network of threat intelligence centers. Sophos is headquartered in Oxford, U.K., and is publicly traded on the London Stock Exchange under the symbol “SOPH.” More information is available at