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McAfee Unveils Appliance for SMB Set

McAfee on Wednesday debuted its latest security appliance for small and midsized businesses, a product that promises the highest level of e-mail and Web browsing security in the cloud with minimal system administration responsibilities.

McAfee (NYSE: MFE) Email and Web Security Appliance 5.5 is the security software firm's first appliance that links to global threat intelligence from Artemis and TrustedSource technologies, a pair of the industry's most accurate and detailed threat intelligence systems.

It also includes a URL-filtering feature that provides granular Web-usage monitoring and policy enforcement, a luxury more typically reserved for large enterprise clients conditioned to battling continuous network attacks from hackers, botnets and phishers.

Even more important for the SMB crowd, the new security software appliance makes life easier with auto-detect network settings and a configuration wizard to walk security appliance newbies through the installation process.

"In addition to their market-leading security effectiveness, these appliances also provide customers with e-mail and Web usage policy enforcement capabilities, compliance tools, informative dashboards and comprehensive reporting," Dave Macey, general manager of McAfee's network security business unit, said in a statement.

Earlier this month, McAfee proffered a new security report that found that small and midsized companies are actually at a higher risk of attack from hackers and malware peddlers than their enterprise brethren.

"The Security Paradox" report found average midsized company lost $43,000 to security breaches in the past year and overall cyber attacks have surged 322 percent for SMBs worldwide.

Also, 71 percent of IT directors at small and midsized businesses believe there is some chance a serious data breach could put their company out of business, yet almost the same amount -- 70 percent -- froze or cut their IT security budgets this year.

McAfee said this new SMB appliance will be available later this quarter and comes with a 30-day guarantee.