WatchGuard Redefines the Security Appliance to Solve SME Growing Pains with Firebox X

Company launches first integrated security appliance designed to be fully expandable

SEATTLE--Feb. 2, 2004--The new Firebox X line of integrated security appliances from WatchGuard (Nasdaq:WGRD) for small- to mid-sized enterprises (SMEs) is the first in the industry designed to enable customers to upgrade the appliance to any higher model in the line just by applying a software license key. Combining firewall, VPN, application layer security, intrusion prevention functionality, spam blocking, Web filtering and authentication in a single appliance, the Firebox X line delivers a total cost of ownership over a four year time frame that is up to 80 percent less(see footnote 1) than comparable appliances on the market.

Firebox X appliances are designed to scale in line with an organization's growth, avoiding the need for costly and time-consuming hardware replacements to keep up with constantly increasing performance and capacity requirements. Customers can also activate security features such as content filtering and antivirus protection on the same appliance through a license key. All integrated security functions and capabilities on the Firebox X can be controlled through WatchGuard System Manager, a common management console designed for intuitive operation.

Firebox X features WatchGuard's Intelligent Layered Security (ILS) architecture, which is designed to maximize protection without compromising performance. The engine at the core of the ILS architecture works to neutralize threats with a coordinated, multi-layered defense that makes efficient use of available processing power. WatchGuard expects to extend the ILS architecture in the future to efficiently integrate additional security services such as gateway antivirus and signature-based intrusion prevention.

In addition, Firebox X ILS architecture incorporates intrusion prevention capability that inspects and blocks traffic at the application layer. WatchGuard was the first to integrate application layer security into an appliance in 1997 and is still the only vendor to integrate this level of intrusion prevention capability in security appliances for the SME market.

Each appliance also features six Ethernet ports (three active initially), enabling the Firebox X to serve as both a perimeter security device and an interdepartmental firewall with an optional three-port upgrade. By segmenting users and devices on the network and enforcing different security policies, businesses can protect against attacks originating from both internal and external sources. The hard drive bay on each appliance provides additional storage that can be leveraged for future functionality such as antivirus quarantining or on-board logging.

"Our IT mission is to implement the best possible security solution at a reasonable cost," said Erika Anderson, technical services supervisor at Unionbay Sportswear. "It must protect us against emerging threats with minimum management and maintenance. WatchGuard's new Firebox X fits our requirements. Its security is reliable and you don't have to be an expert to get it up and running. With Firebox X, we have the security we need in one device and won't have to replace it in the foreseeable future."

"Most of the major security appliance vendors are wooing the SME market; WatchGuard, with years of experience in this market, is in a favorable position to meet the needs of this customer," said Charles Kolodgy, research director at IDC. "By introducing an integrated security appliance designed to scale in performance and capacity as well as functionality, WatchGuard has developed a solution that can grow with its customers' businesses. This addresses a major source of frustration for SMEs."

Steve Moore, CEO at WatchGuard said: "This is basically security on demand. Our SME customers tell us that as their business grows, their greatest security challenge is keeping up with the ever-increasing number and sophistication of threats with limited budgets, time and resources. That's why we're delivering an integrated appliance that has the potential to redefine security for the SME market. It provides the multi-layered enterprise-level security that traditionally required multiple devices -- without increasing management complexity. And with Firebox X, we've enhanced our intuitive user experience by including add-on services management, rich reporting, real-time monitoring and even multi-box management at no additional charge."

Pricing and Availability

Firebox X line of integrated security appliances -- comprising four models: Firebox X500, Firebox X700, Firebox X1000 and Firebox X2500 -- are available immediately. Prices range from US$1,990 MSRP for the Firebox X500 to US$4,990 MSRP for the Firebox X2500. Options to upgrade existing appliances to any higher model in the Firebox X line and upgrade network interfaces from three to six are expected to be available in March of 2004. Firebox X appliances and add-on services are available through WatchGuard resellers worldwide. Please visit to find the nearest distributor or reseller.

About WatchGuard Technologies Inc.

WatchGuard is a leading provider of Internet security solutions for small- to mid-sized enterprises worldwide, delivering integrated products and services that are robust as well as easy to buy, deploy and manage. The company's Firebox X line of expandable integrated security appliances is designed to be fully upgradeable as an organization grows and to deliver the industry's best combination of security, performance, intuitive interface and value. WatchGuard Intelligent Layered Security architecture protects against emerging threats effectively and efficiently and provides the flexibility to integrate additional security functionality and services offered through WatchGuard. Every WatchGuard product comes with an initial LiveSecurity Service subscription to help customers stay on top of security with vulnerability alerts, software updates, expert security instruction and superior customer care. For more information, call 206-521-8340 or visit

(1) TCO comparisons based on published pricing of vendors on 12/31/03