Macrolevel uses next-generation filtering technology developed by industry-leaders like AppRiver, Postini (now Google Message Security), Symantec and Katharion as driving part of our cloud-based spam- and virus-filtering service that is a proven, highly effective, and maintenance-free solution that protects thousands of organizations from junk email and viruses. That’s the advantage of a solution that requires no software or equipment.

There is nothing to install, license, or maintain - our engineers will collect necessary information about your mail server, set new account for you and change your mail server DNS settings - all within one hour. Since there is no risk – no software to load, no equipment to configure -- there are no upfront, ongoing, or unplanned IT expenses. The cost is purely limited to the number of users who are enrolled in the service. Pricing is based simply on the length of a subscription and the number of users, with an average cost of about six cents per person per day – a cost that includes spam filtering, protection against viruses, and backup mail service. And a free trial of the full solution can be activated in a few minutes.

How a managed filtering service works

When an email message is sent over the Internet, it is directed to one or more email servers that are designated for the recipient’s domain name. For example, an email message sent to yourname@yourdomain.com would travel across the Internet to the mail server for yourdomain.com – this might be a server called mail.yourdomain.com.

The information about which mail server(s) should receive email for a given domain is contained in that domain’s DNS (Domain Name Service) records (you can see more details about our DNS management services here). In our example, the yourname.com domain would have in its DNS records an entry - known as an “MX” (mail exchanger) record - that directs all inbound email destined for widgets.com to the server named mail.yourdomain.com. It is a simple process to change the MX entry for a given domain, so that inbound email is redirected to systems that filter the inbound messages for spam and viruses. Those systems, hosted by a managed service, in turn deliver the filtered messages to the organization’s mail server.

Where cloud-based anti-spam fits in

Vendors like Google, Panda Security and Copperfasten Technologies, just to name a few, maintains highly specialized systems that do exactly that. Inbound email is automatically filtered – in under one second – then delivered to a company’s mail server, whether that mail server is hosted at the company’s office or at a third-party location such as an Internet Service Provider. Tens of thousands of companies use this approach because it is simple to implement, compatible with any existing mail server, and a very effective defense against spam and email-based viruses.

Get started in minutes

To activate cloud-based filtering service, regardless what the underlying filetring engine/provider is, all that is necessary is the MX record change that enables incoming email to be seamlessly routed through provider's servers, and a simple account setup. Typically, this simple change can be completed within a few minutes and customers begin experiencing the benefits as soon as the change is made. There is no interruption to an organization’s email, nor are any changes necessary with the company’s mail server or email software.

In addition to the advantages of a managed service, hosted spam- & virus filtering offers numerous other advantages compared to other solutions:

  • Ease of use. This service was designed with simplicity as a key goal. Users do not need to install or learn any new software, nor change the way they use their email – with hosted filtering they simply receive significantly less spam (and no viruses). Use of straightforward, easy-to-navigate administrative control panel is completely optional and usually unnecessary.
  • Accuracy. In independent, real-world testing by Network Computing magazine, solutions we offer to our customers was compared against alternative anti-spam solutions. The test evaluated the percentage of spam that was correctly detected and blocked, as well as a filtering technology's capability not to misidentify and block legitimate mail. Filtering service offered by Macrolevel was proven to be the most accurate of any of the dozens of solutions analyzed.
  • Virus protection. Over 90% of viruses are transmitted through email. Antivirus filtering offered in conjunction with anti-spam filtering protects an entire organization against fast-moving viruses with automatic anti-virus updates every five minutes – thus helping customers avoid the substantial costs of recovering from an email-borne virus infection.
  • Support. Dedicated customer service team provides responsive support to all customers large and small, from assistance with the initial activation to help with any other questions that may arise.
  • Advanced features. Organizations can choose to take advantage of sophisticated enterprise-level features, such as configurable digests of detected spam messages, a hosted quarantine, hundreds or thousands of automated anti-spam and anti-virus updates per day, multiple methods of handling spam, one-click whitelisting, comprehensive reports, and much more – or filtering service can simply be left alone to run smoothly without any effort.
  • No lost messages. While filtering service's high accuracy minimizes the chances that a legitimate email message will be flagged as spam, customers can specify that certain email addresses never be flagged as spam, and can adjust the aggressiveness of the filter company-wide or on a per-user basis. Additionally, automated digest messages provide users with an at-a-glance list of all junk messages caught by the system, with a one-click release mechanism for any legitimate or potentially legitimate mail – assuring that no messages are ever lost.
  • Simple pricing. A simple per-user pricing model is used. Small businesses can choose month-to-month or annual subscription agreements, and can choose to filter some or all users at their organization.
  • Reliability. Absolute reliability with integrated mail queuing and backup mail service

Regardless of implementation, Macrolevel's mail filtering service will provide for email continuity - if a customer's server goes down, the service will keep a copy of all inbound email messages, and allow customers to access and respond to those messages, until the server is back online.

Macrolevel's filtering service supports the following:

Mail servers

The service supports common mail servers including Microsoft Exchange Server, Lotus Domino, Postfix, Sendmail, Macintosh OS X Server, Novell Groupwise, and is also included in Google Apps Premier Edition.

Service Providers (hosted email)

The service is compatible with ISPs and domain name providers that host the email for your own domain but you must have the ability to change the MX records associated with your service.

Make your email servers more secure, compliant, and productive. Block email threats before they reach your organization. Ensure proprietary information that must remain confidential stays where it’s safe. Eliminate the need for the ongoing patching and updates required by appliance or software solutions. Leverage cloud services to reduce maintenance, conserve bandwidth, and improve the performance of your existing email infrastructure.

A survey commissioned by security vendor GFI Software in September '09 found that 55% of SMBs in the US use one or more hosted/managed services. Of these 29% use a service for minor applications; 24% for security applications; 26% for network monitoring and redundancy and 21% for CRM/ERM. The survey also found that easy internet access and scalability (56%), lower costs (46%) and faster deployment (43%) were considered to be the main benefits of using a hosted service while the main concerns were application performance, data security/privacy and systems failure/redundancy (62%) respectively.

A total of 52% said they would prefer a vendor giving them both an online and on-premise solution.

We at Macrolevel offer them both. Some antivirus/anti-spam solutions available as virtual appliances. Please visit our solutions section for more information about on-premise/ antivirus and anti-spam edge solutions we offer.

 

A copy of the GFI Software survey can be found here: http://www.gfi.com/documents/SecurityReport2009.pdf.