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Forefront Security for Microsoft OCS Unveiled

Forefront Security for Office Communications Server (FSOCS) was released to manufacturing, Microsoft announced on Tuesday. The solution is designed to protect an organization's network from malware spread through instant messaging (IM). It also provides a filter to support corporate compliance policies.

The FSOCS solution works with Microsoft's Office Communications Server, a unified communications product that enables voice-over-IP telephony, e-mail, video and collaboration. Microsoft rolled out a "launch experience" of OCS 2007 Release 2 in early February.

Microsoft's FSOCS product includes five antivirus suites from Microsoft's security solution partners. The antivirus software comes with the product, without additional costs or licensing, according to Microsoft. IT support personnel can configure the solution to run certain antivirus engines. Alternatively, all of the engines can be run at the same time.

IT personnel can support compliance guidelines for IM traffic using a filter in FSOCS. Messages using certain keywords can be blocked. The filter can be set to block files of a certain size. It can also block file types, such as .exe files, even if the extension has been renamed, according to a Microsoft video.

This FSOCS release provides 64-bit support for OCS 2007 R2 and OCS 2007 Enterprise Edition servers. It also integrates with OCS 2007 Access Edge Server, a component that connects outside users to the OCS network and helps with federation.

A Microsoft FAQ explains that FSOCS can be purchased as a single product or as part of the "Enterprise CAL Suite and Forefront Security Suite." Microsoft also offers a free 120-day trial version, which can be downloaded here.

About the Author

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

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