The Unified Security Gateway is an appliance which sits on the corporate network and intercepts traffic from unauthorised applications.
Known as 'greynets,' the category refers to applications and services other than web browsers or email clients that are not authorised by companies for employee use. Examples include torrent applications or instant messaging tools.
Because the programs are not authorised or regulated by IT departments, they can sometimes pose security or data loss threats. And according to FaceTime vice president Frank Cabri, that danger is growing.
Cabri said that since the first version of the Unified Security Gateway was released last year, the number of applications that the system monitors has grown to more than 1,400. Perhaps even more disturbing to firms is that many unauthorised services which IT departments believe they have blocked, such as peer-to-peer file sharing, are still in use by employees.
"What we see in most networks is firewalls, and the firewall is very good at keeping bad guys out," Cabri explained.
"But the challenge that all these apps have in common is they're pretty evasive, they're pretty good at switching ports."
FaceTime hopes that this is where the new version of the Unified Security Gateway can come into play. The device is available to monitor and intercept outgoing traffic, which can evade firewalls.
In addition to logging and blocking greynet traffic, the new version of the gateway allows administrators to regulate the use of certain services, such as Facebook. IT departments can set different access permissions for each user or specify times in which certain applications or services can be used.
"The way employees are using the internet has changed," said Cabri.
"You can allow employees to embrace those new technologies, but not for four hours a day."
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