Strengths: The Safend product performed well and kept us abreast of what was happening on the network.
Weaknesses: Dashboard is a little cluttered, but the design is logical and posed no risk of delay.
Verdict: A mid-priced offering with some unique bells and whistles.
Safend Protector is an offering that is less of a suite of products and more of a unified application. If we were to place Safend Protector into a specific category, we would place it in the category of protecting information leakage by blocking removable storage and peripherals. The tool detects and allows restriction of devices by device type, model or even specific device serial number.
The software allows security administrators to either block all storage devices completely, permit read-only, encrypt all data on devices, as well as monitoring, blocking and logging files that are downloaded to or read from these devices. Safend Protector creates forensic logs of all data moving in and out of the organization, allowing administrators to create policies that don't necessarily restrict device usage, but allow full visibility device activity and traffic.
Alerting administrators to security breaches is also possible through the Safend console. Safend Protector Client can be silently installed on all endpoints. After the installation of the client, policy distribution to endpoints can be handled either by the Safend Server via SSL or by using Active Directory's Group Policy Management Console, Novell's eDirectiory or by using any third-party tool that your organization has for distributing software. Once policies have been distributed, the client immediately starts protecting the ports on that computer without requiring a reboot.
In addition to the features mentioned, Safend Protector also includes Safend Auditor, a tool that allows for easier administration. In the lab, we found the Auditor to be one of the more impressive components of the Safend Protector suite.
We were also impressed by the support of many Microsoft clients, including the less frequently used 64-bit version of XP and Vista.
The documentation was in standard PDF format files.
The company offers both eight hours a day/five days a week and 7/24 support, depending on the support agreement (sometimes at no cost).
The Safend Protector varies in price from $13 to $32 depending on the quantity purchased. This puts the Safend offering in the middle of the price range for devices tested this month.