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As the world becomes more and more connected through the use of computers and mobile devices, the number of threats found on the Web has only increased. Security breaches have now become a common occurrence, affecting companies all over the world. As a result, millions of people have had their sensitive information stolen or leaked. Needless to say, there is a great sense of unease when it comes to using the Internet, and the need for reliable, easy-to-use security solutions has never been greater.
Although Blue Coat’s technology is designed for corporate networks, we wanted to offer families the same industry-leading Web security software our business customers use. The result is K9 Web Protection — Blue Coat’s free, enterprise-class security software designed for home computers.
At Blue Coat, we believe strongly in keeping the Internet safe for families. With K9 Web Protection, parents can easily filter Web content and protect home computers from Web threats and viruses. Because our security technology is designed to thwart the most sophisticated malware attacks, we’re confident we can protect your family (even the most determined teen!) from accessing inappropriate Web content and malicious downloads. Cyber attackers seem to be everywhere these days, and they’re always on the lookout for easy targets or less than vigilant web users. K9 Web Protection helps your family stay one step ahead and can keep you safe even if you accidentally click a link that could introduce dangerous malware to your device.
Blue Coat understands that you can’t constantly monitor all the activity on your home computer. That’s why we’ve designed K9 Web Protection to give you total control over where, when, and how your kids explore the Internet. In fact, our filtering technology is so effective it’s earned us a steady stream of praise from parents — and even more protests from teenagers. So we must be doing something right.
Blue Coat has built its reputation for being a leading security expert in an age where every aspect of people’s personal lives seems to find its way onto the Web at some point. We’re always on the lookout for new technologies that will help us keep businesses and families safe. This has resulted in an aggressive strategy to work with and acquire new startups that are also pushing forward the effort to make the Internet a safe place for everyone to use. Near the end of 2015, we acquired Elastica, one startup that specializes in detecting when cloud computing applications could be used for dangerous purposes. In the case of businesses, this technology allows managers and executives to know exactly what types of cloud services an employee is using on his or her work computer. Extended to families, the same concept helps parents to recognize if members of the family are using cloud applications that could pose a threat to home computers and networks.
The Elastica acquisition is just one of a long string of growth moves for Blue Coat. In just the past few years, we’ve also acquired companies like Norman Shark, which specializes in malware analysis; Perspecsys, a cloud access security broker; and Solera Networks, a company whose expertise lies in data mining. Every acquisition gives us added tools and more talent to tackle the various security challenges that always seem to be growing in number. Every new technology increases Blue Coat’s capabilities, allowing us to improve on the numerous services we already offer, like K9 Web Protection.
Blue Coat Systems’ continued expansion and growth is in part the result of a solid foundation first built in 1996 when Blue Coat was founded. Though at the time we were known as CacheFlow (we changed to Blue Coat in 2002). The company quickly grew from its relatively humble origins, to the point where we now provide products to upwards of 15,000 customers all over the world. These companies have come to trust in Blue Coat’s exceptional security offerings. The customers range from corporations to governments, schools, and even hospitals. Consider all of the potential threats and sensitive information at risk in places like a health clinic or learning institution. That’s why we make products that can be used by just about everyone, all with the goal of keeping people safe from Web threats. K9 Web Protection was developed specifically with families in mind. As many businesses, schools, and hospitals have discovered, our work can help protect a family from the dangers of the Internet.
Creating products with Internet safety in mind is only part of what we do at Blue Coat. One other aspect is being an expert voice in the realm of Web security. With this aim in mind, we are always giving our recommendations and insights on what the current state of Internet security threats is. As just one example of this, our team at Blue Coat Systems recently released our views in a study called the 2015 State of Mobile Malware Report. Our report showcases how Internet users have come increasingly under attack by malicious individuals, to the point where some users are becoming virtual hostages. This is a result of the increasing use of mobile devices. Think about all the time you spend on your smartphone or tablet. Even when you’re not using a mobile device, you more than likely have one nearby you at nearly every moment at every day. Hackers and cyber attackers have quickly caught onto this fact and see mobile devices as fertile ground to launch new attacks.
This is all highlighted in the 2015 State of Mobile Malware Report by the fact that ransomware has quickly become one of the fastest growing attacks used by hackers. In more traditional hacking attacks, hackers have sought to steal data or at the very least leave behind damaging malware to create chaos and disorder for an Internet user. Ransomware works in a different manner. Instead of seeking to steal data, hackers instead infect a computer that essentially blocks Internet users from accessing their most important data. This is accomplished through data encryption. Users than get a message from the attacker indicating that in order to release that information once again, targets need to pay the hacker for the decryption key. Many people give in to these tactics and usually deliver payment through means like bitcoin.
Mobile ransomware has become so popular among hackers in part because it is easier to execute than other tactics while also being very difficult to trace. It also allows attackers to get some personal gain through more direct means when compared to different strategies. Many hackers have simply proven to be several steps ahead of current security techniques, meaning many security companies are always needing to play catch-up.
Our report also shows how many of the applications on people’s mobile devices are constantly monitoring users and sending data about them to their company of origin. Most of this data is usually mundane, such as the type of operating system the person’s phone uses or what browser they prefer to use. As unimportant as it all may seem, it serves to underline that privacy on the Internet is far from a guarantee, especially as people use their mobile devices more and more. Everything from where we go during the day to the people we text can be recorded and used later. Some of it may be used for advertising purposes, but should that information fall into a cyber criminal’s hands, the damage could be significant.
All of the findings in our report serve as a reminder that any online activity should be carefully protected. The threats that exist today are certainly formidable, but more worrying are the types of Web threats you may encounter in the future. Cyber attackers can at times be unpredictable, so trying to figure out what tactics they’ll be adopting within the next few years becomes a truly challenging task. Many families may feel overwhelmed at the number of threats out there, but just as Blue Coat Systems has helped protect many businesses over the years, families can feel safer with the right Web protection tools at their disposal. K9 Web Protection in particular is one of the most helpful ones that’s also easy to use. We’re already well acquainted with enterprise security, where sensitive information is part of daily interactions. Protecting your family’s information has become just as big of a priority. The fact that K9 Web Protection is free just illustrates the importance of protecting people while they navigate the Internet.
Increased worries about Internet security and protection is understandable with mobile devices becoming so popular and social media becoming part of everyday life. It’s impossible to control exactly where everyone in your family goes on the Web at every moment of the day. Simply thinking about having that sort of control can be a nightmare, but modern security tools like K9 Web Protection make it easy to monitor and regulate Internet activity. Something as simple as putting a filter on Web navigation can be all the difference between a safe Internet experience and introducing new malware to your computer. The elements of the Blue Coat K9 Web Protection make it a popular choice among parents who are worried about what their kids access while on the Web. Parents have the ability to set the parameters of what types of websites children can visit. They can also limit the times when kids can access, so keeping later hours off limits is certainly within the realm of possibility.
If there’s one thing we at Blue Coat understand, it’s the need for better security. We honed our craft through our excellent and award-winning enterprise-class software, and we’ve made that same level of commitment available to families at no cost. The Internet can be a scary place, especially when you aren’t sure who exactly you may be interacting with. But fear shouldn’t paralyze you. Our software provides a level of protection that can help you feel more confident about everything you do on the Web. Over the past two decades, we’ve made a name for ourselves in providing security solutions of all types. We have more than 1,400 employees ready to put in the effort to ensure the latest security systems are exactly what is needed to combat today’s current threats. Get you and your family prepared to enjoy the Web again with the right security at the ready.