Symantec Secures and Manages Enterprise Instant Messaging

Symantec IM Manager 8.0 protects against internal and external threats while helping ensure compliance with it policies and government regulations

CUPERTINO, Calif. -- April 3, 2006 -- Symantec Corp. today announced Symantec IM Manager 8.0, the market-leading secure instant messaging (IM) and real-time communications (RTC) management solution that enables organizations to control the use of public IM services and enterprise RTC platforms and manage compliance with legal and corporate governance policies. A key component of Symantec’s Enterprise Messaging Management solution portfolio, Symantec IM Manager is scheduled to be available in North America in April.

“Corporate adoption of IM has been growing at more than 200 percent per year,” said Carlin Wiegner, senior director of messaging and web security solutions at Symantec. “With this increase in usage come security risks and compliance requirements. Enterprises need a way to secure, manage, and archive all aspects of enterprise messaging while also insuring compliance with IT policies and government regulations. With Symantec IM Manager, organizations have the ability to fully leverage the benefits of real-time communication while protecting their infrastructure from security and compliance risks.”

IDC estimates that enterprise IM will grow from 40 million users today to more than 140 million by 2009, making IM the fastest growing communications medium of all time. The speed and scale of this growth has outpaced IT administrators’ ability to deploy security and management solutions, providing a new avenue for malicious code. To date, most corporate IM usage remains unmonitored and unprotected, and the infection of one computer can result in the rapid proliferation of viruses, worms, and spyware within corporate environments. The real-time nature of IM combined with attacks that leverage social engineering techniques make IM threats highly destructive and costly to an infrastructure.

According to the most recent Symantec Internet Security Threat Report (March 7, 2006), worms were the preferred type of malicious code on all three large IM networks in the second half of 2005, representing 91 percent of IM-related malicious code during this period. Additional research shows that more than 2,400 unique IM and peer-to-peer (P2P) threats were identified in 2005 -- a staggering 1700 percent increase from the previous year. The vast majority of these threats were URL-based worms, but the rise of IM-based phishing attacks and more sophisticated malware complicate IM’s risk profile. Because of the speed of propagation with an IM threat, the cost to an organization can mount by the minute, not the hour.

Despite its high-risk profile, IM delivers significant business value by transforming the way employees communicate and collaborate. Therefore, organizations must keep messaging systems and data both secure and readily available. Symantec IM Manager 8.0 provides powerful new proactive threat protection and remediation that secures the real-time communications infrastructure against external threats such as worms, spam, viruses, phishing, and other unwanted content. It provides the industry’s only behavior-based and network-anomaly monitoring system to preempt IM threat outbreaks before they occur, while leveraging the largest real-time global community to identify and validate the most current IM threats.

Symantec IM Manager 8.0 also provides customers with innovative granular policy controls for all aspects of IM and real-time communications, including application sharing, file sharing, audio, video, and voice over Internet protocol (VoIP). It offers leading support for all major public IM networks and enterprise platforms, including AOL Instant Messenger, GoogleTalk, MSN Messenger, and Yahoo! Messenger, as well as enterprise IM offerings such as Microsoft Live Communications Server, IBM/Lotus Sametime, and Jabber. Through comprehensive control of internal and external IM usage, including internal message routing, regular expression pattern matching, and real-time user monitoring, organizations are protected against the loss of sensitive information and intellectual property over IM.

In addition, Symantec IM Manager 8.0 provides fully integrated management and compliance archiving for corporate policy enforcement, human resources, legal risk management, and regulatory compliance requirements, including Security and Exchange Commission (SEC), National Association for Securities Dealers (NASD), Sarbanes Oxley, and Gramm-Leach-Bliley. Symantec IM Manager 8.0 can now be configured for easy out-of-the-box integration with Symantec Enterprise Vault, the industry’s leading e-mail compliance archiving solution and another key component of the Enterprise Messaging Management solution portfolio.

Symantec Enterprise Messaging Management Symantec is the first company to deliver complete, end-to-end Enterprise Messaging Management capabilities, keeping messaging systems and data both secure and readily available. Symantec Enterprise Messaging Management provides industry-leading products and services designed to help eliminate unnecessary costs by reducing large volumes of unwanted spam, stopping viruses and worms, automatically managing the lifecycle of older messages through archiving, and by helping to keep customers’ communications infrastructures resilient against failure.


Symantec IM Manager 8.0 is scheduled to be available in North America in April 2006 through Symantec’s worldwide network of value-added authorized resellers, distributors, and systems integrators.

About Symantec

Symantec is a world leader in providing solutions to help individuals and enterprises assure the security, availability, and integrity of their information. More information is available at

Must Read Articles