WatchGuard Technologies XCS 770
Strengths: A very strong, higher-end product offering. Excellent documentation.
Weaknesses: A bit pricey because of the higher-end model reviewed.
Verdict: A solid set of features for enterprise environments looking to converge security and content management into one solution. We grant this product our Recommended designation.
The WatchGuard XCS 770 is an appliance-based security and content management filtering solution that is part customer- premise device and part cloud-based services. The appliance is installed locally within the customer site, but takes advantage of several defense subscriptions, such as IP reputation filtering, zero-hour threat outbreak and others.
Setup for the XCS was a breeze and we were up and running in no time. The web-based interface was incredibly easy to navigate and it becomes apparent that the XCS appliance has a number of granular enterprise-class features for both email security and content management. Some of the granular message-based encryption options (Cisco Envelope protection) are only available as third-party add-on components. However, gateway-to-gateway TLS encryption is included. Overall, there are several high-end defense capabilities for anti-spam, anti-virus, and IP reputation filtering, and there are excellent pre-defined dictionaries for popular compliance mandates, such as HIPAA, PCI and others. IP reputation can be pushed to F5 on Cisco devices in order to offload that particular processing task from the XCS appliance.
The XCS 770 appliance has a nice blend of native and out-of-the-box features, but can be enhanced and complemented through third-party add-ons or subscriptions to cover a wide range of enterprise email security and content management issues. DomainKey integration and the ability for the appliance to act as a web proxy for remote email solutions (OWA, IMAP, etc.) are nice features as well. Additionally, the appliance has "training" features, which can learn how to classify data and apply policies accordingly. This helps tremendously with data classification, e-discovery and other similar enterprise level tasks.
The help file for the XCS was one of the best we've seen. Documentation and explanation of features is quite impressive. The WatchGuard website has several useful features, such as online forums, training and certification programs, product documentation and more.
The appliance comes bundled with a 24/7, four-hour response time support package. WatchGuard also tailors support staffing to customer business hours. Additional support packages are available. The particular model submitted for review comes with a higher price tag, but mostly because of the fact that the model is a higher-end device.