We are pleased to announce the acquisition of Los Angeles-based hosted email filtering company Katharion.

Through this acquisition, we will be able to offer a hosted email filtering, anti-spam and anti-virus service later this quarter.

“This is the next step of our strategy to give our customers the option of having an email filtering product that is on-premise, in the cloud as well as additional services that would be of benefit to those looking to maximize the benefits of a hybrid option. Katharion offers superior technology to other hosted email filtering technologies as well as an infrastructure that will help GFI to give our customers even greater choice,” Walter Scott, GFI’s CEO said.

This follows the addition of HoundDog Technology’s remote monitoring and management solution to our portfolio in July which was re-launched as GFI MAX.

With this new service we will be able to provide a range of additional or edge services that will benefit companies both with and without existing on-premise email security solutions. For example, companies can use the hosted service to block up to 90% of the total emails received by the company (which are spam) and therefore reduce their bandwidth costs and the volume of junk hitting their server.

Our hosted and edge anti-spam and anti-virus filtering solutions will work with any mail structure including Microsoft, Novell, Apple, and Linux environments. Both the hosted and edge solutions will provide for email continuity – if a customer’s server goes down, our 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.

Katharion offers highly effective, outsourced anti-spam and anti-virus email filtering solutions for corporations, small businesses, Internet service providers and technology companies. As a managed service, Katharion is compatible with any email system and can be implemented rapidly. Independently proven to be more accurate than other solutions, Katharion’s industry-leading technology ensures the optimal filtering of unwanted or harmful messages. At the same time, Katharion’s customizable management interface and innovative features such as one-click whitelisting assure that the solution is both simple to deploy and extremely easy to maintain.

Katharion’s CEO, Eric Schwab, said: “We have worked hard to develop an effective and easy-to-use email security and continuity service. We are excited about broadening the reach of our service offering by joining an established technology leader like GFI, and we share a vision with GFI of providing customers with their choice of hosted, on-premise, or hybrid email security solutions. We look forward to being part of the GFI family.”

“We are confident that Katharion’s success and solid customer base will be the catalyst for GFI to further expand our product portfolio using either on-premise or an online delivery model or a mix of both. We will be launching the service later this quarter. We are looking at bringing in other companies and their technology in the coming months that will enable us to continue to provide the best possible solutions to our customers based on their infrastructure and needs at the time,” Mr Scott added.

A survey that we commissioned in September 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.

For more information about Katharion and its services visit: http://www.katharion.com.

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