GFI OneGuard and GFI OneConnect: How GFI Software's Centralized Security Solutions Help SMBs Protect and Manage Networks

Image featuring GFI Software

TL; DR: With more than 1 million new malware threats being released each day, it’s a dangerous world out there for the SysAdmins trying to maintain a secure network. Regardless of size, all businesses need effective solutions to protect their data from breaches. Thankfully, GFI Software provides enterprise-grade security software at a price point accessible for SMBs. Two of the company’s leading solutions, GFI OneGuard and GFI OneConnect offer a centralized platform from which to manage systems security and improve infrastructure availability. With software built around functionality, ease of use, and quality, it’s easy to see why so many SMBs are turning to GFI to help mitigate threats and streamline network security.

Adapting to vulnerabilities is one of the most important aspects of network security. CNN estimates a massive 1 million new viruses are released every day. With new threats rising at such an alarming rate, well-prepared network technicians should have the best security software at their disposal — no matter the size of the companies for which they’re working.

All of today’s businesses need enterprise-level tools to protect customer and proprietary data; however, many of these tools have historically proven cost prohibitive for most SMBs. Fortunately, GFI Software provides enterprise-grade security solutions with price points for any size business.

“GFI’s products are targeted mainly at the SMB through our global reach,” said Ian Bugeja, GFI’s Director of Product Management. “Our main focus is on cost and giving SMBs access to the security solutions they need to thrive in today’s environment.”

GFI’s software covers a broad range of security needs to address the largest possible user base. With the help of GFI OneGuard and GFI OneConnect, businesses find an easy-to-use, functional, and top-tier means to secure networks.

GFI’s flagship product, OneGuard, offers a platform to manage network security from one centralized location. The software provides real-time antivirus protection, patch management, and asset tracking to keep tabs on network resources. Paired with GFI’s cloud-based email management platform, OneConnect, which includes email archiving, spam and malware protection, and continuity services, businesses have a complete toolbox to guard against breaches in the ever-evolving threat matrix.

Cost-Effective, Enterprise-Grade Security Solutions for SMBs

Security is essential not only when downloading files from a server, but also when sharing files among peers. Someone may unknowingly download a virus or have an undetected RAT or botnet that attaches itself to an unsecured file.

“The marketplace and vulnerabilities within have changed a lot,” Ian said. “In the early 2000s, spam, malware, and ransomware weren’t as sophisticated as they are today. Now, some are so cleverly built, they’re difficult to spot — even by experts — so it’s important to continuously adapt to prevail against these attacks.”

Ian noted IT teams are looking for comprehensive security solutions that can be easily housed and managed under one roof. And that’s exactly what OneGuard and OneConnect offer.

Comprehensive Network Security Housed on One Platform

GFI OneGuard is an IT management software with antivirus functionality. Because OneGuard provides centralized control, IT managers can more easily monitor networks as opposed to decentralized configurations.

“We saw that these solutions needed to merge into one,” Ian said. “A company needs antivirus and threat management — it needs a lot of different products to be safe. We primarily designed OneGuard to be one centralized solution for this.”

Screenshot of GFI OneGuard's UI

OneGuard’s intuitive user interface offers a centralized location for network, patch, and antivirus management.

OneGuard’s features include real-time antivirus scans powered by Kaspersky, resource tracking, and patch management. In the case of an emergency, systems may even be rebooted or shutdown remotely. Threat assessment, as well as file and device sharing, thus becomes quicker because scans and patch updates are applied as soon as they get released.

“It is basically one platform to control your servers and devices and to make sure they are secure using different services,” Ian said.

Cloud-Based email Management Keeps Businesses Safe from Inbound Threats

OneConnect is similar to OneGuard in that it protects users from malware. Whereas OneGuard revolved around general network security, OneConnect concerns itself mainly with the email and communication aspects of networks.

“Email is the primary driver of most contemporary businesses — without it, many companies can go bankrupt,” Ian said. “Some companies rely solely on email for orders and communication, so loss of email for just a day can be devastating.”

Screenshot of the OneConnect UI

GFI OneConnect offers advanced spam and malware filtering to protect networks from email-originated threats.

Unfortunately, many inbound threats come in the form of suspicious email attachments and dubious phishing messages. OneConnect’s approach to spam filtering is multifaceted, featuring Sender Profile Framework (SPF) and Bayesian analysis to detect spam preemptively.

OneConnect also keeps an archive of all emails and will step in for an Exchange server in the event of unexpected downtime. Both OneGuard and OneConnect help network technicians keep their systems safe from threats before they even show up.

Products Built Around 3 Pillars of Functionality, Ease of Use, and Quality

Reliable software should work properly, be relatively user-friendly, and be cost-effective. Since GFI bases its software on these principles, the company has become one of the top names in centralized network security.

GFI offers an all-in-one approach as opposed to companies having to cherry pick through multiple providers and partners to find the solutions they require.

“Obviously having everything from one vendor is the easiest and most cost-effective solution,” Ian said. “GFI is the one-stop-shop for everything an SMB needs for security.”

GFI logo

GFI’s software was developed with the aim of offering enterprise-grade security solutions to SMBs.

These benefits are achieved through GFI’s dedication to three main pillars of excellence — functionality, ease of use, and quality.

“For us, the biggest challenge is to find a cost-effective solution that brings ease of use and enterprise-grade functionality together for smaller companies,” Ian said. “This is what SMBs require in this day and age.”

1. Functionality: As Ian noted, it has been difficult for small- and medium-sized businesses to get a foot in the door when it comes to adopting all the security precautions required in today’s online landscape. The threats are the same whatever size business one is running, so it’s imperative SMBs find a cost-effective solution with feature functionalities adapted to the modern world.

“For the enterprise, it’s all about creating redundancies when it comes to, say, email security,” Ian said. “You need a separate internet connection, power source, and email infrastructure. This is way beyond the reach of most SMBs. But OneConnect basically provides this redundancy system at a fraction of the cost.”

This functionality includes the array of features offered by OneGuard and OneConnect, including email backups, centralized cloud monitoring, and real-time virus scans.

2. Ease of use: The friendlier the UI, the easier it is for projects to see completion. Ease of use is also achieved with automation, and GFI’s scans run automatically to detect vulnerabilities before they can be exploited. Because IT professionals often spend long days at the office working on numerous projects, they need software solutions they can learn to use quickly and without hassle.

“With both OneGuard and OneConnect, we wanted to create an interface that was intuitive and easy to use,” Ian said. “We want you to be able to look at the dashboard and not miss a thing.”

3. Quality: Users not only want the most features for the money — they want the best. GFI is an affordable way to obtain a more secure network and email server, and its mission statement ensures high quality in its products — to deliver the “trusted expertise [with] smartly engineered IT solutions with a strong emphasis on security excellence.”

“People are looking for quality,” Ian said. “Their solutions need to be able to be compatible with the latest devices, servers, and operating systems, and be bugless. We’re always looking to evolve the functionality, ease of use, and quality of our tools.”

Acquisitions Continue Dedication to Adapt to an Ever-Changing Market

GFI is dedicated to adapting to the ever-changing software market. Because security needs are always in flux, good security software must follow the trends. GFI is committed to helping IT departments become more secure and manageable through its security and archiving software.

In many ways, the company is doing this through the acquisition of new technologies. Ian noted that the company’s latest 2017 acquisition of Kerio Technologies, with software responsible for security in connecting and collaborating, is a wonderful fit with the GFI portfolio.

“As a company, we’re growing a lot through acquisitions — with a big one at the beginning of 2017 with Kerio,” Ian said. “We have other companies coming in down the pipeline, which we will be announcing in the coming months. This is how we’ve become a market leader in this space — by acquiring good technology and integrating it into our product. This really brings value to our customers.”

Sean Garrity

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