IBM Managed Protection Service
Strengths: Full-scale UTM capability in a managed service with good analyst involvement.
Weaknesses: None that were found.
Verdict: A top-notch services suite based on proven technology and infrastructure. We make this one our Best Buy.
The IBM Managed Protection Service combines a full security monitoring staff with security monitoring devices to manage, monitor and respond to security threats on a customer's network. This service includes management and monitoring of features, such as firewall, IPS, anti-virus, anti-spam, content management and VPN.
The service, based on IBM Internet Security Systems Proventia, is solid, as is the underlying technology. The collection of events from security operations centers (SOCs) around the world helps IBM correlate global and regional events, as well as improving reliability of its customer-level services.
While the service is totally managed and monitored, users can access a web-based management dashboard where they can easily find information on events, as well as reports and logs from various security devices on the network. Users can also view real-time information on device status via this dashboard. We found the dashboard to be intuitive and easy to navigate.
All the log and event data from a customer's security appliances are sent securely across the internet to one of IBM's SOCs where both automated and human correlation techniques are applied by analysts to detect and respond to threats facing the customer's entire network.
A portal user guide is provided. This PDF includes many screen shots and information on how to use the web-based portal, as well as a walkthrough of the various menus available.
IBM Managed Protection Services are provided 24/7 with client access to the eight global SOCs and customer portal. The service is offered at three levels: standard, select and premium. Each of these levels offer various response times and access to features, such as onsite support, access to an engineer and update services.
At a cost of $575 per month, we find this service to be an excellent value for the money. The service combines all the capability of the IBM ISS Proventia appliance into a managed security service that can be completely managed and monitored with little need for customer intervention.