After Kaspersky & Norton what is best SMB Suite

molly_dog

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I support the network for a small municipal government. I had planned to install Kaspersky's small business suite up until the news came out that key US government departments are uninstalling the software because of some possible hanky-panky between Kaspersky and the Russian government. I have pretty clear instructions from the Board of Trustees to find something else.

I'm not here to debate the validity of the concerns, I just would like some recommendations for similar products that are comparable in features, reliability, and cost. BitDefender looks like it might work but MS Server 2016 Essentials isn't listed and I don't want to assume it's supported. (I have a ticket open with Sales) I've never had good experiences on small systems with any of Norton's products.

Also, a key desired feature is anti-ransomware. The current selection of security suites is pretty overwhelming. I had no idea there were so darn many of them!!

Thanks for any suggestions!
 

gasaraki

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I like Avast but we use TrendMicro at my company. It's decent. Both has anti-ransomware but I don't know how well anti-ransomware would work anyway on any product.
 
I used to use BitDefender for my clients but have switched back to Kaspersky.
Reason being is that BitDefender is designed to give you much less choices and tuning ability and it made it very difficult to get it to work with the special software/needs of businesses. On top of that, their software even prevented html loading correctly on one of what I like a call half-managed switch; worked a while with their support but they could not figure out how to make it work besides using a special file to basically disable the entire protection module.

Since you are eliminating Kaspersky and Norton I cant really advise you on what to get, but can tell you that I would not recommend bitdefender for reasons posted, and mcafee or trend micro for performance/actual protection ability.

Also, I hope you are not just counting on AV product to save you from ransomware. You should have backup policies putting your files where the client machines cant access them.
 

JoshRoss

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Honestly, I'd probably go for either Sophos or Malwarebytes. Malwarebytes recently launched their amazing business suite, with constantly new added functionality and it has been leading in malware removal for quite some time. Sophos, well, it is consistent, works well in most scenarios and is an all-around acceptable solution. And there is also an option for McAfee, although I am not sure how well that works in a governmental environment.
 

molly_dog

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Boosted1g,
Thanks for the specifics!

I'm not counting on much of anything to prevent ransomware, honestly. If someone sets their sights on this obscure municipality, there's not a whole lot we can do to stop it. It's more of a bandaid to mollify the Board. IMO, the best defense is a secure network, current backups, and installation media. However, they've already added a rider to the insurance policy which will at least give them a buffer for the financial hit of restoring everything.

Before I got interrupted yesterday I had started looking at Norton/Symantec's small business suite but I'm just really leery of the performance hit that is the tradeoff of their products. Just don't know. In your opinion, have they gotten any better?

Thanks again.
 

JoshRoss

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Have they? A little bit, they are pumping out updates on regular basis and performance to resource usage ratio is becoming better. However, I do want to point out that for the past month Norton had struggles with their updating system. Right now, reliability hits are a huge concern of mine when it comes to Norton. If it fails to update at crucial times, or updates take hours to establish, its not really healthy for a company.
 

molly_dog

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Thanks, Josh. That's about par for the course, I guess.

I'm still looking at Sophos. Malwarebytes is pretty pricey but I'm at least familiar with it so it's still on my short list.

I also looked at Paloalto Traps as someone else recommended but don't think that's for us. In a heads up comparison it came in way behind Norton so that speaks for itself.

The search continues...
 

JoshRoss

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Malwarebytes is pricey but very good. Considering this year, they are pushing out their business suites it should be pretty worth while. However, some features are still a little bit lacking. Nonetheless, they are addressing issues and talking to users a lot. By the end of the year, they should have every convenient feature ready.

And Paloalto Traps? Never heard about that one..... should say enough.
 

molly_dog

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"And Paloalto Traps? Never heard about that one..... should say enough."
Yup, that was my first thought, too.

Anyway, starting to lean more and more towards Malwarebytes but still nosing around. Came across Panda Adaptive Security. I'm somewhat familiar with their free offerings since a few of my customers use it at home.

The product got pretty decent reviews with dings against their lack of reporting features. In the comparisons I looked at they came in behind Kaspersky, Bitdefender, and Sophos, but just barely behind Kaspersky and Sophos. Seemed like every one I looked at was pro-BitDefender though. It always won by a fairly large margin.

So I'm pretty much down to Malwarebytes and Panda pending pricing and final feature comparison.
 

JoshRoss

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Seems fair, keep in mind that Malwarebytes is also developing further and better than Panda is at this stage. However, Panda could be a little bit more feature-full. Good luck on your choice! Keep us posted on what you decide!
 

molly_dog

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Had/have a family illness that got me off the track of this task for a while.

Still waiting for a quote from Panda for their Adaptive Security 360 suite. My experience thus far with quotes has not been pleasant. I jump through a bunch of hoops only to learn that the price for 5 licenses per month is more than our projected annual budget.

Even Malwarebytes appears to be going this route since I last visited their site. At least I can find an actual price, though.

Depending on what Panda hits me with, I'm probably going to end up going with MBytes. I'll post back with the final decision later today.
 

molly_dog

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After much deliberation plus wailing, moaning, and gnashing of teeth, I settled on Panda Adaptive Defense 360.

It has all the features we need and then some. They claim it's lightweight and transparent. (I just bought the licenses on 8/24 so I have not yet deployed it) And it's cloud-based.

Of course, cost was a big factor and the final price worked out to less than $25 per license per year for 3 years.

Time will tell whether or not I made the right choice.

Thanks again for all your help.



 

JoshRoss

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Glad our input helped you out. I am very much interested in how Panda is going to do its job. If you could, either update here or in PM's on the functionality of the anti-virus. Good luck!
 

molly_dog

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Will do!
 
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