These complementary products from Akonix make up a comprehensive communications security system. The Enforcer module is an enterprise-level server that provides security services for both instant messaging and peer-to-peer systems, while L7 Enterprise, in conjunction with the Enforcer, provides control and reporting facilities as well as creating, applying and maintaining security policies for applications and users.

L7 Enterprise would normally be installed on a different system to the one running the Enforcer software, although it is possible to install both on the same system. The software has other modules that enable it to manage other instant messaging servers such as Microsoft's Live Communications Server and IBM's Lotus IM Server.

Instant messaging clients need to be configured to use the Akonix Gateway service, which can involve a certain amount of Windows Registry modification to achieve the desired result. Akonix provides example scripts for the common Windows IM clients, and these should require little modification to match your site requirements.

IM file transfers can be checked for viruses using Symantec's scanning software, and the system offers four options for dealing with infected files – clean the file, delete it, quarantine it or pass it on to the intended recipient, with or without warning messages to administrators or end users.

Scanning can be restricted to specified file extensions or applied to every type of file, and warning messages can be customized. The system also has an "inappropriate language" filter that can check message texts. The filter's word list can be modified as required.

All options can be configured and applied using a system of policies that can be applied from a global level right down to an individual user.

With reporting facilities that can generate reports ranging in detail from a high-level overview of activity by protocol down to detailed reports of individual user conversations, the system provides comprehensive auditing options.

These can be modified to suit individual needs, and a wizard is available to help generate site-specific report templates.