Check Point now offers virtualized browser protection

In the virtualization world, 'security' is a word that is coming up more and more these days. And there are many companies showing up that are attempting to marry the two together. Check Point Software Technologies is one such company, announcing the general availability of ZoneAlarm ForceField, a comprehensive virtualized browser security solution. In public Beta testing since last September, the solution prote

In the virtualization world, 'security' is a word that is coming up more and more these days. And there are many companies showing up that are attempting to marry the two together. Check Point Software Technologies is one such company, announcing the general availability of ZoneAlarm ForceField, a comprehensive virtualized browser security solution. In public Beta testing since last September, the solution protects a computer from various Internet attacks by isolating the browser from the rest of the system.

According to Check Point, ForceField enables consumers to bank and shop online, or surf the Internet without fear or limitation. They claim the product addresses the growing security threats that are being delivered online, including drive-by-downloads, unwanted malware and other Web threats that damage users' PCs or steal users' private information.

Check Point's approach secures the Web session itself and is implemented in multiple layers. The first layer of virtualized browsing places an impenetrable two-way "bubble of security" around the browser.

In addition to two-way virtualization protection, ForceField security layers also include anti-phishing to provide fraud protection, spyware site blocking to prevent users from accidently visiting known spyware distribution sites, download protection, site rating to provide important security information about a site, keylogger jamming, and private browsing to keep user's personal information secure.

"Hackers today are exploiting widespread browser vulnerabilities to steal consumers' personal information, utilizing techniques that are unstoppable by traditional PC-based security products," said Laura Yecies, vice president and general manager of Check Point's ZoneAlarm consumer division. "By virtualizing the browser, and adding active security layers, ZoneAlarm ForceField provides the highest level of technology needed to stop Web attacks, without interfering with users' browsing experience."

ZoneAlarm ForceField integrates with Internet Explorer and Firefox, and it runs under Microsoft Windows XP or Windows Vista. Check Point said that the product is also compatible with other brands of anti-virus, anti-spyware, firewall and security suites.

Check Point is right. Security is a growing concern, and the Internet raises a red flag for both the home consumer and the corporate world. Companies like Kidaro, Thinstall and Symantec are using virtualization to try and protect the desktop as well. Kidaro was recently acquired by Microsoft, and they leverage existing virtualization technology to provide their solution. Thinstall (acquired by VMware) and Symantec (which acquired Altiris) virtualizes applications to protect the registry and create their own protection isolation layer.

Other products may seem even more familiar to ForceField, like Trustware BufferZone or startup GreenBorder (which was acquired by Google before they ever really got off the ground).

What solution is right for your home or organization? Security is important in both environments, and there are a number of different approaches you can take that leverage virtualization and isolation containers to keep you safe. Keep watching these various solutions as they continue to mature.

Check Point has made ForceField available for download, and it will be available in retail outlets beginning in June.

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