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Microsoft Releases Forefront Protection 2010 for SharePoint

Microsoft on Wednesday released a new enterprise-grade security solution for use with its SharePoint document sharing and collaboration products.

Forefront Protection 2010 for SharePoint provides protection against viruses and spyware being spread through shared files. In addition, it can be set to block certain file types (such as .EXE and .ZIP files). It also has a keyword filtering feature that allows organizations to block the sharing of sensitive documents.

The product works with SharePoint 2010 and Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 Service Pack 1 or higher versions. For those using SharePoint Portal Server 2003, Microsoft offers downgrade rights to its Antigen security software, according to Microsoft's FAQ. The preferred implementation would be to use a 64-bit operating Windows operating system with the product, according to Microsoft's system requirements.

The security solution has a new user interface, supports PowerShell scripting and has a new "restore from quarantine feature," according to Noreen Lynch, a development lead and program manager for Microsoft Forefront Protection 2010 for SharePoint. A dashboard provides an overview for IT pros. It shows the various security engines used and whether they took action on a file. Multiple security engines from different security vendors run at once to provide malware protection.

The dashboard also shows product licensing, services and scan-job details. Lynch demonstrates the interface in a Microsoft video here. She explained that Forefront Protection 2010 for SharePoint is needed on top of regular malware protection because the product provides file-share security for SharePoint itself.

Some of the product's components will be available at no additional cost via a service pack to be released in the "second half of 2010," according to Microsoft's FAQ. One of those features in the service pack will be the Forefront Server Security Script Kit. The kit will allow IT pros to use PowerShell to remotely configure "multiple deployments of Forefront Protection 2010 for SharePoint and Forefront Protection 2010 for Exchange Server," according to the FAQ.

Forefront Protection 2010 for SharePoint is part of Microsoft's sprawling Forefront enterprise security product line. The multiple Forefront products stem from Microsoft's "business ready security" approach. Under this approach, Microsoft aims to protect messaging, collaboration and endpoints in an organization, while also enabling information security, identity security and access management.

The product can be downloaded now by TechNet subscribers. Alternatively, a trial version is available via the TechNet Evaluation Center here. Microsoft also offers documentation and guidance, as described in this Microsoft blog.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for the 1105 Enterprise Computing Group.

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