Trend Micro, BigFix team on antimalware, systems management

Plans announced to integrate their respective antimalware and systems management technologies

Trend Micro and BigFix Tuesday announced plans to integrate their respective antimalware and systems management technologies.

The first fruit of their partnership is called the Trend Micro Web Protection Module, which is designed to protect Windows-based endpoints against Web threats through Trend's reputation-based analysis, known as Smart Protection Network. The software module works with BigFix's agent for systems management and can be managed via the BigFix console.

The larger effort between the two partners, though, will be the introduction later in the first quarter of what Trend is calling its Endpoint Security Platform, which consists of a new agent and management console for Windows-based servers and desktops that will combine Trend's antimalware protections with BigFix's patch management and security configuration tools.

"We're going after the very large enterprises with this," says Dan Glessner, vice president of enterprise marketing at Trend Micro. "This is a strategically important alliance for Trend Micro concerning the systems management component. We really haven't played here before."

Trend Micro executives acknowledge the strategic alliance with BigFix is aimed at boosting Trend's ability to compete with Symantec, which acquired systems management vendor Altiris in 2007, and late last year announced a broad effort to build a shared platform for security and systems management.

Trend is also mindful of other competitors, including McAfee, which uses its ePolicy orchestrator as a common management platform, plus IBM's Tivoli.

The management console for Trend's forthcoming Endpoint Security Platform will be the BigFix management console (which can support hundreds of thousands of endpoints); Trend Micro will resell the console under its own brand name.

For BigFix, the alliance "allows us to bring a top-tier antimalware technology to our customers," says Jon Fan, senior director of product management at BigFix, which will resell Trend Micro antimalware products. Both BigFix and Trend Micro say the partnership is an exclusive alliance.

Ron Clarkson, director of enterprise endpoint security at Trend Micro, says the security firm will continue to market its enterprise antimalware protection suite OfficeScan, which is directed at enterprises with less than 10,000 seats. A new edition will be announced later in the first quarter that's expected to include support for BigFix under the OfficeScan plug-in architecture.

Trend Micro and BigFix haven't released pricing information.

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