Kaspersky Small Office Security beefs up protection for Very Small Businesses

This is Version 6 of the low end of the Kaspersky business portfolio, which extends the use of functionality like System Watcher, makes improvements to the management console and the alerting system, and adds a search capability to find third party software that is in need of updates.

Kaspersky Lab is announcing the new version of Kaspersky Small Office Security [KSOS]. It now provides file servers with the same protection against ransomware and crypto-miners as PCs, through Kaspersky’s System Watcher. The management console has been updated and improved. More flexibility has been added to the alerting system, and a search capability that helps update third party software has been added. Additional improvements have been made to functionality and performance.

KSOS is targeted at the low end of the market, companies with five to 50 users.

“This product has always been tailored for very small companies, and is sold both online and through channel partners,” said Andrey Pozhogin, cybersecurity expert at Kaspersky Lab. “Compared to Kaspersky Endpoint Security for Business, this product is much more intuitive for very small businesses, so that they have much less chance of a bad experience. Partners put it in Very Small Business accounts, and they get a much happier audience.”

This is now Version 6 of the product.

Andrey Pozhogin, cybersecurity expert at Kaspersky Lab

“KSOS has always done well for us, better than we expected,” Pozhogin said. “It has been on the market for six years. It’s easy to use, so you don’t have to be an IT guy to use it. That makes it well suited for its target market, businesses like small pizzerias and autoshops, who just put it on their computer and keep an eye on it. It has a lot of functionality, and the value is great for the price.”

Improved manageability is always a top priority with this product.

“We always work on manageability, since KSOS is aimed at people without IT staff,” Pozhogin stated. “We have improved the management console and updated the cloud management interface, where you can manage licenses and start different tasks right from the console, like checking all computers for malware  or updating all computers protected by KSOS.”

Kaspersky’s System Watcher has been expanded with this release.

“This is an amazing technology, which looks at everything going on in the system, and can correlate what happens to different processes,” Pozhogin said. “It’s able to spot behavioral patterns like ransomware by looking at things like the sizes of file changing, and it also has a timeline so that you can roll back malicious changes. Previous to Version 6, we had System Watcher Protection built into the application for computers. Now it protects servers as well. It’s a less likely event, but we think it’s still important.”

System Watcher is also effective against crypto-miners.

“They are different because they try and stay below the radar as long as possible, since the revenue they generate comes from your CPU being used for math equations. You won’t have the same file changes from this, but there are different indicators System Watcher looks for. It lets you look for as many types of different behavioral patterns as you wish, looking for many things at once.”

A new alert approach has been implemented with this release.

“Before, if 10-15 computers were infected, everyone would get notified,” Pozhogin indicated. “You don’t always want everybody to get this, just the administrator – unless the alert is really critical,”

Improved search capability has been added for third party app updates.

“Historically, third party applications tend not to be updated, so tend to be riddled with vulnerabilities,” Pozhogin said. “Ones like  Adobe and Microsoft have regular update cycles, but you don’t see a lot for many other applications. They can be on a PC for years and never be updated. This feature spots ones who have an update available that haven’t been updated yet, and gives you an update option.”

For Windows 10 users, support for Microsoft Anti-Malware Scan Interface has been added. This version is also GDPR compliant, and lots of tweaks have been made to improve performance.