My name is Brendan Foley, and I’m the Group Product Manager for Microsoft Forefront Client Security, responsible for product management and marketing.   The public beta release marks a major milestone for the combined engineering and marketing teams, who have all worked with dedication and focus over the past months to make Forefront Client Security possible.

As you can imagine, we’re all very excited about the public beta release.  Here’s a few reasons why we’re excited about the product we’re developing:

Unified protection from viruses, spyware, and other malware threats.

A single security agent—installed on business desktops, laptops, and server operating systems—scans viruses, spyware, and other malware in real-time, providing effective protection against blended threats while minimizing end user disruption.   Forefront Client Security is built on protection technology already used by millions of people worldwide in products such as Windows Live OneCare, Windows Defender, and Microsoft Forefront Security for Exchange Server.

The solution is backed by Microsoft’s global security research & response system, a dedicated, experienced team of malware researchers which combines extensive data collected with advanced automated analysis techniques to help discover and respond to new threats faster.   Check out the team’s recent reportMicrosoft Security Intelligence Report—which provides an in-depth perspective of trends in the malicious and potentially unwanted software landscape in the first half of 2006.

Simplified administration through central management.

You can deploy the security agent as a single client package which includes all protection and management capabilities.  You can also further save time by deploying a single policy that configures the anti-spyware, anti-virus, and state assessment technologies in the security agent for one or more protected computers.  Forefront Client Security supports both local and remote access to all administrative functions including configuration, signature updates, reporting and alerting.

Critical visibility and control over threats and vulnerabilities.

A single dashboard provides visibility into threats and vulnerabilities.  State assessment scans enable you to determine which managed machines need patches or are configured insecurely.  Threat alerts deliver insightful, prioritized information that eliminate the need to search through volumes of data.  Insightful, prioritized reports enable you to examine real-time data and emerging trends, focusing on critical information while allowing you to drill down for more detail as needed.

Ready integration into your existing environment.

 Forefront Client Security is optimized for Active Directory Group Policy for configuring security agents and Windows Server Update Services (WSUS) for distributing signatures, but you can use third party software distribution systems to accomplish these tasks as well.  Forefront Client Security also complements the secure platform of Windows Vista to deliver improved performance and system protection.  It supports Windows Vista features and functionality such as Windows Image File (WIM) for hard drive imaging and Transactional NTFS for graceful error handling and data protection.  It also uses the prescribed scanning platform in Windows Vista (the Windows Filter Manager) to minimize end user disruption during pre-scheduled scans.

Please download the public beta and let us know what you think – we need your feedback and input to make the public beta a success! 

Thank you for your interest in Forefront Client Security, and we look forward to hearing from you!

Regards,

Brendan