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Trend Micro Smart Protection Network to Be Enhanced With Lighter, Faster and Stronger Cloud-Client Endpoint Security Capabilities

June 18, 2008

NEW YORK, June 18 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — Trend Micro Incorporated , a global leader in Internet content security, showcased today current and future solutions and services fueled by the company’s expanded cloud-client approach to endpoint security during its annual corporate vision event in New York City.

Designed to reduce reliance on time-consuming pattern-downloads on the client, this new approach is expected to become a key component of Trend Micro Smart Protection Network, a next-generation cloud-client content security infrastructure designed to protect customers from Web threats. It delivers the infrastructure behind Trend Micro’s solutions and services and demonstrates Trend Micro’s commitment to executing on the company’s strategy and vision to move more security capabilities into the Internet cloud.

The next stage of Web threat protection — stopping them “in-the-cloud”

This announcement marks the next stage in the company’s multi-layered strategy to combat cybercriminals who have transformed what was once a relatively simple landscape of viruses into a complexly hidden, yet flourishing underground economy that preys upon the growing number of businesses and individuals who use the Internet on a daily basis. Trend Micro continues to push security further into the network infrastructure, stopping threats at their source in the cloud, while also embedding multi-layered protections more deeply into the network.

Trend Micro Smart Protection Network, which uses a number of patent-pending technologies, combines Internet-based (or “in-the-cloud”) technologies with lighter-weight, client-based methods to ensure customers have immediate access to the latest and strongest protection wherever and however they connect — from home, within the company’s network, or on the go.

At the heart of the Trend Micro Smart Protection Network is the move beyond the conventional approaches of blocking threats and towards a global network of threat intelligence that uses Trend Micro’s cloud-based technology to block Web threats before they reach a network or computer. Leveraged across the company’s on-premise products, as well as hosted solutions that have effectively protected millions of customers since Trend Micro’s inception 20 years ago, Trend Micro Smart Protection Network takes the fight against crimeware into the Internet cloud.

“Memory-consuming pattern files on PCs and networks have grown exponentially in recent years. In 2005, approximately 50 new patterns were added to a pattern database in a given day; in 2008, that number has grown to 5,000 a day,” said Raimund Genes, CTO of anti-malware for Trend Micro. “By storing the majority of pattern files in an Internet cloud database and keeping them at a minimum on the endpoint, Trend Micro helps stop Web, file and email threats before they reach the end-user or the corporate network. This new approach lightens bandwidth consumption on customers’ networks and endpoints and provides faster and more comprehensive up-to-date protection.”

First introduced as Trend Micro’s Web threat protection strategy in March 2007 and renamed as part of this announcement, the Trend Micro Smart Protection Network correlates Web, email and file threat data using reputation technologies and continuously updated threat databases in the cloud to detect, analyze and protect customers from the latest threats. These technologies have been successfully integrated within the company’s security solutions portfolio throughout the past 15 months and currently handle an average of 5 billion queries per day. With its Web threat protection strategy, Trend Micro first staked the claim that traditional scan-based security solutions alone can no longer provide effective protection from insidious Web threats and that a multi-layered, multi-component set of flexible, adaptable techniques was needed.

   Trend Micro Smart Protection Network: Key ingredients    Web reputation technology  

With one of the largest domain-reputation databases in the world, Trend Micro’s Web reputation technology tracks the credibility of Web domains by assigning a reputation score based on factors such as a Web site’s age, historical location changes and indications of suspicious activities discovered through malware behavior analysis. It will then continue to scan sites and block users from accessing infected ones. To increase accuracy and reduce false positives, Trend Micro Web reputation technology assigns reputation scores to specific pages or links within sites instead of classifying or blocking entire sites since often, only portions of legitimate sites are hacked and reputations can change dynamically over time.

Email reputation technology

Trend Micro’s email reputation technology validates IP addresses by checking them against a reputation database of known spam sources and by using a dynamic service that can assess email sender reputation in real time. Reputation ratings are refined through continuous analysis of the IP addresses’ “behavior,” scope of activity and prior history. Malicious emails are blocked in the cloud based on the sender’s IP address, preventing threats such as zombies or botnets from reaching the network or the user’s PC.

File reputation technology now joins Web and Email reputation technologies

Trend Micro Smart Protection Network now encompasses in-the-cloud file reputation technology that checks the reputation of each file at the endpoint, server or gateway. The check is done against both a known good list of files and a list of known bad files which today are termed antivirus patterns. High performance content delivery networks and local caching servers ensure minimum latency during the checking process. Since the malware information is stored in the cloud, it is available instantly to all users on the network. And, compared to conventional antivirus pattern file downloads that take up space on the endpoint, this method trims endpoint memory and system consumption.

Correlation technology with behavior analysis

Trend Micro Smart Protection Network uses “correlation technology” with behavior analysis to correlate combinations of activities to determine if they are malicious. A single activity of a Web threat may appear harmless, but when several activities are detected together, they may signal a malicious result. For example, a user may receive an email from a sender whose IP address has not yet been identified as that of a spam sender. The email includes a URL to a legitimate Web site that is not yet listed as malicious in a Web reputation database. By clicking on the URL, the user is, without knowledge, redirected to a malicious Web site hosting “information stealers” that are downloaded and installed on the user’s computer, gathering private information for criminal purposes. By correlating the different components of a threat and continuously updating its threat databases, Trend Micro has the distinct advantage of being able to respond in real time, providing immediate and automatic protection from email and Web threats.

Feedback loops contribute to “Neighborhood Watch” system of protection

Another component of the Trend Micro Smart Protection Network is the integrated feedback loops that provide continuous communication between Trend Micro products as well as the company’s 24/7 threat research centers and technologies in a two-way update stream. Each new threat identified via a single customer’s routine reputation check, for example, automatically updates all of Trend Micro’s threat databases around the world, blocking any subsequent customer encounters of a given threat. By continuously processing the threat intelligence gathered through its extensive global network of honeypots, customers and partners, Trend Micro delivers automatic, real-time protection against the latest threats and provides “better together” security, much like an automated neighborhood watch that involves the community in protection of others. Because the threat information gathered is based on the reputation of the communication source, not on the content of the specific communication, the privacy of a customer’s personal or business information is always protected.

Trend Micro Smart Protection Network: Roadmap

Trend Micro expects to start integrating its new cloud-client file reputation technology into its portfolio of endpoint security solutions for consumers, small- and medium-sized businesses, as well as enterprises in 2009. The technology will become an integral part of the Trend Micro Smart Protection Network. By introducing fast, real-time security status “look-up” capabilities in the cloud, Trend Micro reduces dependence upon conventional pattern file downloads on the endpoint, as well as the cost and overhead associated with corporate-wide pattern deployments.

For more information, please visit http://www.trendmicro.com/go/SmartProtectionNetwork

About Trend Micro:

Trend Micro Incorporated, a global leader in Internet content security, focuses on securing the exchange of digital information for businesses and consumers. A pioneer and industry vanguard, Trend Micro is advancing integrated threat management technology to protect operational continuity, personal information, and property from malware, spam, data leaks and the newest Web threats. Visit TrendWatch at http://www.trendmicro.com/go/trendwatch to learn more about the threats. Trend Micro’s flexible solutions, available in multiple form factors, are supported 24/7 by threat intelligence experts around the globe. A transnational company, with headquarters in Tokyo, Trend Micro’s trusted security solutions are sold through its business partners worldwide. Please visit http://www.trendmicro.com/.

Trend Micro Incorporated

CONTACT: Andrea Mueller, +1-916-337-5115, andrea_mueller@trendmicro.com,or Vivian Shic, +1-925-323-3550, Vivian_shic@trendmicro.com, both of TrendMicro Incorporated

Web site: http://www.trendmicro.com/