Oxford based Sophos is one of the world leaders in security software and has recently launched Small Business Suite which comprises specially tailored versions of the company’s anti-virus scanner and PureMessage anti-spam software. It is worth noting that the product will not install on older versions of Windows such as 95 or 98, you need 2000 or above. In any case, security conscious organisations would do well to eliminate Windows 95/98 installations from their networks since these systems cannot be considered secure enough for the modern business environment.

The anti-virus module sits on your company’s desktop machines. A plain English manual is supplied which explains in step by step terms how you can remotely install the software on systems across your network. Once this is done the installations can be centrally managed via the Sophos Control Centre, this allows you to ensure that all of the PCs are running the most up-to date version of the anti-virus software and make sure that users are running the software.

PureMessage needs to be installed on your mail server, the package is designed primarily to work with MS Exchange Server 2000 (SP3) or higher although it is able to work with other mail servers albeit with reduced functionality. The system offers a flexible range of options to allow administrators to block specific types of mail depending on content, attachments and the likelihood of a message being spam. Just like anti-virus software, anti spam software needs to be updated to cope with new types of junk mail, you can use the Control Centre programme to ensure this happens automatically.

Although you will need a certain degree of technical ability to install and configure Small Business Suite, it is by no means a complex product. If you are looking for an all-in-one spam and virus solution this is an ideal package, although we recommend installing a separate firewall product to provide a complete security system.

Price £315 (5 users, ex. VAT)

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