SkyRecon Systems Storm Shield v5.5
Strengths: A great price per seat for the endpoint protection mechanisms included in the product.
Weaknesses: A little bit more complex to use than others
Verdict: A very attractive price point, granular administrative features and plenty of endpoint protection options.
StormShield is an endpoint security software solution consisting of a backend management server and client agents. The backend server is typically installed on a Windows 2003/2008 server and includes Microsoft SQL Express and an Apache web server. The management console must be launched locally from the server it's installed on and the Apache web server allows client endpoints to fetch the agent by browsing to the server URL. Agents can only be deployed on Windows operating systems at this time.
Installing the product was fairly quick and painless and the backend management of the solution is pretty impressive. There are lots of granular management features, such as role-based access control, authentication options to the backend, reports, logs and several others.
Policies are configured using a check-in and check-out type of system, which locks the configurations until the user is ready to manually alter them. The protection mechanisms available for the tool include: anti-virus, stateful firewall, encryption, application control, removable media protection, Wi-Fi protection and host IPS. The solution can also perform NAC integration using its "scripting" features. These options present a very useful combination of signatures, rules and behavior-based protection. The spirit of the solution is actually very powerful, however the implementation of these items can be a little bit cryptic at times and has a slightly steeper learning curve than most. Deploying the agent gets a little bit tricky because it's an entirely different program due to the implementation of various server roles in the environment.
A third interface comes into the mix, as you can fetch the agent from the URL of the management server itself. The agent itself comes in a professional, secure and AVP option, depending on the license type.
The Storm Shield administrator guide contains all the necessary information to get the solution up and running. However, at 735 pages, this helps to underscore that there is some understanding to be had of the architecture and lots of items to be configured.
Standard support is included in the purchase of the product. This includes eight-hours-a-day/five-days-a-week phone and email support, as well as access to SkyRecon's extranet portal.