MCI expands security product line

Telco gets into intrusion protection and vulnerability scanning

MCI Inc. on Tuesday announced several new IP (Internet Protocol) security products, including intrusion protection, vulnerability scanning, an antivirus/antispam offering and new managed firewalls.

Most of the products, aimed at both enterprise-sized and smaller businesses, will be available in May to companies based in the U.S. MCI hopes that with the launch of several products at once, the company can show customers that MCI provides a comprehensive suite of security offerings, executives said.

"I don't think people will get overwhelmed," said Bob Blakley, senior security services product manager for MCI. "Customers out there have choices. We want to be positioned to provide it all for them."

Among the announcements Tuesday from MCI was a partnership with VeriSign Inc. to offer a managed PKI (public key infrastructure) service available in May, as well as custom security offerings. With the PKI service, MCI customers will be able to incorporate digital certificate-based authentication, privacy and non-alterable digital-signatures into their existing e-mail and Web applications, directories and virtual private network devices.

Other security products announced by MCI Tuesday:

-- With MCI’s Managed Intrusion Protection service, available in May, companies can assign the burden of monitoring network traffic to MCI. MCI's Security Operations Center will provide around-the-clock monitoring and analysis of suspicious activity.

-- Also in May, MCI will roll out a new Managed Email Content product, which provides antivirus and antispam e-mail scanning to sanitize e-mail before it reaches a company’s network. The new service will allow companies to offload the management of e-mail scanning to MCI, which uses MessageLabs Inc. technology in its e-mail-scanning product.

-- To further combat viruses and worms, MCI will make available its Vulnerability Scanning service to all customers in May. Currently provided annually to MCI’s existing managed security customers, offers customers an in-depth analysis to detect security holes or misconfigurations that can be used to compromise a corporate network.

-- MCI will offer managed firewall services for small, medium-sized and large businesses. MCI will roll out two new managed firewall: Managed Firewall Solo and Managed Firewall Office, aimed at small and medium-sized businesses. Additionally, MCI will augment its existing Managed Firewall Enterprise offering with a new service-level agreement for Mean Time to Repair that guarantees a four-hour window for in-region trouble-shooting and repair.

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