Questions

Postini vs. Exchange

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Postini vs. Exchange

teh_tr_monk
I work in an environment of about 100 users. We use Exchange for email (hosted ourselves). Our email is filtered by a perimeter appliance very similar to Barracuda's mail security appliance, and it generally works great for us.
Recently some members of management have proposed switching our email services from our Exchange infrastructure to Postini. A few of the reasons that have come up is the low cost of the Postini service, the ability to create personal white and black lists, individual user quarantines, and other features. There also was a significant amount of Google name dropping.
Given that we can accomplish many of these features with our existing infrastructure, I have a hard time rationalizing the change. How would shared calendars and directories be handled... What about collaboration...?
It seems to me that Postini is probably a good idea for a SOHO environment, but I don't know about a mid-sized corporate environments that already have infrastructure invested. It also seems that there might be many trade-offs too. I am also really reluctant to give users access to their quarantine for security reasons. What about false positives... What about losing centralized control... What about privacy... ??
I was wondering how other professionals felt about the service.
Was hoping to get a few pros and cons and general opinions of the service from the point of logistics, technicals, management, etc. The more detail the better!

Thanks in advance!
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    shasca

    Your title says Department Manager. Is this not your decision/recommendation to make? Who wants this transition, and what is their justification? Have they no qualms about a third party handling Company proprietary data? Are you being outsourced in an indirect way?

    You need to find out the root cause for this sudden need to change.It doesn't sound like it is YOUR best self interest. (just reading between the lines)

    As far as cataloging Email Archives most email systems have this option. We have chosen to not force the users to have to look through the archived spam/Ham to see what is good and bad. Social engineering has come such a long way. I even have to take a second,third look at some of these messages when going through the filtered archive daily.

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    teh_tr_monk

    Even managers have managers. The company I work for chooses to operate in a very democratic way and open way. There are a lot of managers that have no idea what they're talking about. You should have been here last year when a couple managers thought it would be a good idea to switch from MS Office to Open Office and Google Docs. But I digress.
    All they know is that Postini is cheap and our Exchange licensing is not. They see that Postini has individual whitelists, and our current infrastructure does not. The want our current filtering of 99% accuracy to be increased to 100% accuracy. They pay no attention to the functions we would be trading off nor the investment we already have made in our systems. Maybe some of you can relate?
    While I am pretty much against it, I did see on the Postini site that there are many large corporations that use Postini, and I though, there must be some positive reasons to switch.

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    mark

    Users that share calendars, access other mailboxes, are used to out of office replies will be upset when these things are not there or more difficult to access. Not to mention the applications/devices that integrate so seamlessly into Exchange.

    You have already paid for licenses and the infrastructure is in place. There would be a lot more cost to move it to anything else.

    If are you looking for black/white lists and some other things.....look at products from Symantec and GFI. Symantec has a great anti-spam/AV software and GFI does great archiving.

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    AV .

    I work in a 140 user environment and have used Postini for about 1 1/2 years. We have an in-house Exchange 2003 server.

    Previously, we used GFI which is also an excellent product. We switched because it took too much time to tweak the filters to keep up with the spammers.

    Postini is fully customizable. It allows people to manage their own spam with very little effort. Postini sends an email once a day with a list of their quarantined emails and they choose to deliver the email or not. They can view the emails in their quarantine with no danger of getting a virus, etc.

    You can control the aggressiveness of the filters. There are very few false positives. I've found it to be less than 1%.

    We also have a "catchall" spam filter for some people. Postini lets you have it either way. I was skeptical about losing centralized control of the spam after using GFI, but it really isn't a problem.

    Privacy has never been an issue, so far. Emails pass through Postini filters, but are not stored on their servers, except if there is maintenance being done or your mail server is down. It will temporarily store it until your server is available.

    We just filter mail coming in and not mail going out. I'm not sure what you mean with shared calendars or directories. Mine were not affected. Our mail works just like it did before Postini, only better. You still have to set it up, but it beats managing your spam in house.

    Postini support is admirable. They give you a tech to work with for 30 days to help you set it up. Go for it. You can always go back to Barracuda.

    I thought the users would rebel, but they actually don't mind managing their own mail. I was pleasantly surprised.

    AV

  • +
    0 Votes
    shasca

    Your title says Department Manager. Is this not your decision/recommendation to make? Who wants this transition, and what is their justification? Have they no qualms about a third party handling Company proprietary data? Are you being outsourced in an indirect way?

    You need to find out the root cause for this sudden need to change.It doesn't sound like it is YOUR best self interest. (just reading between the lines)

    As far as cataloging Email Archives most email systems have this option. We have chosen to not force the users to have to look through the archived spam/Ham to see what is good and bad. Social engineering has come such a long way. I even have to take a second,third look at some of these messages when going through the filtered archive daily.

    +
    0 Votes
    teh_tr_monk

    Even managers have managers. The company I work for chooses to operate in a very democratic way and open way. There are a lot of managers that have no idea what they're talking about. You should have been here last year when a couple managers thought it would be a good idea to switch from MS Office to Open Office and Google Docs. But I digress.
    All they know is that Postini is cheap and our Exchange licensing is not. They see that Postini has individual whitelists, and our current infrastructure does not. The want our current filtering of 99% accuracy to be increased to 100% accuracy. They pay no attention to the functions we would be trading off nor the investment we already have made in our systems. Maybe some of you can relate?
    While I am pretty much against it, I did see on the Postini site that there are many large corporations that use Postini, and I though, there must be some positive reasons to switch.

    +
    0 Votes
    mark

    Users that share calendars, access other mailboxes, are used to out of office replies will be upset when these things are not there or more difficult to access. Not to mention the applications/devices that integrate so seamlessly into Exchange.

    You have already paid for licenses and the infrastructure is in place. There would be a lot more cost to move it to anything else.

    If are you looking for black/white lists and some other things.....look at products from Symantec and GFI. Symantec has a great anti-spam/AV software and GFI does great archiving.

    +
    0 Votes
    AV .

    I work in a 140 user environment and have used Postini for about 1 1/2 years. We have an in-house Exchange 2003 server.

    Previously, we used GFI which is also an excellent product. We switched because it took too much time to tweak the filters to keep up with the spammers.

    Postini is fully customizable. It allows people to manage their own spam with very little effort. Postini sends an email once a day with a list of their quarantined emails and they choose to deliver the email or not. They can view the emails in their quarantine with no danger of getting a virus, etc.

    You can control the aggressiveness of the filters. There are very few false positives. I've found it to be less than 1%.

    We also have a "catchall" spam filter for some people. Postini lets you have it either way. I was skeptical about losing centralized control of the spam after using GFI, but it really isn't a problem.

    Privacy has never been an issue, so far. Emails pass through Postini filters, but are not stored on their servers, except if there is maintenance being done or your mail server is down. It will temporarily store it until your server is available.

    We just filter mail coming in and not mail going out. I'm not sure what you mean with shared calendars or directories. Mine were not affected. Our mail works just like it did before Postini, only better. You still have to set it up, but it beats managing your spam in house.

    Postini support is admirable. They give you a tech to work with for 30 days to help you set it up. Go for it. You can always go back to Barracuda.

    I thought the users would rebel, but they actually don't mind managing their own mail. I was pleasantly surprised.

    AV