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Appeared on: Friday, November 15, 2002
Apreo announces first quickStart detection program for MP3s and desktop, online file-sharing software

Today, Apreo Inc. announced the availability of the QuickStart Detection Program to find MP3 files on corporate networks and the desktop online file-sharing software used to trade them. The QuickStart MP3 Detection Program enables fast corporate response to the Record Industry Association of America (RIAA)'s Fortune 1000 anti-piracy campaign, and helps minimize legal liability.

The QuickStart MP3 Detection Program includes:

* Apreo's SoundJudgment(TM) product, which detects and responds to MP3s and online file-sharing programs on desktop and network hard drives, finding the files even if they are hidden;
* start-up assistance from the SoundJudgment product team; and
* three months of free software maintenance and technical support upon renewal of the SoundJudgment license.

SoundJudgment is pre-configured with a default set-up to reduce installation and start-up time so detection can begin quickly. Typically, installation with the default configuration takes under an hour.

Increased Risk of Piracy and Pressure to Respond

"The QuickStart MP3 Detection Program is an excellent choice for enforcing an MP3 piracy policy in Fortune 1000 companies because it provides fast, thorough detection," said Gregory Coticchia, a systems and security software expert, and president of Entra, Inc., a business consulting practice for high technology companies. "The SoundJudgment software addresses both sides of the piracy equation, finding and responding to the music files -- and the desktop software used to trade them."

Fast, straightforward solutions like the QuickStart MP3 Detection Program are critical in light of the RIAA's recently-announced corporate outreach program asking the Fortune 1000 to address the piracy of entertainment content on their networks. The RIAA has won several significant legal victories that back this request.

In spite of this climate, online file-sharing applications used to trade MP3s are frequently the top weekly download on CNET, an industry-leading shareware site. Stronger pursuit of copyright infringement violations and pervasive use of online file-sharing software increase the pressure for corporations to swiftly investigate and address potential piracy on their network.

SoundJudgment's Critical Role in Preventing Piracy and Abuse

"The heart of SoundJudgment's effectiveness is file-level protection," explained David Hollander, chief executive officer of Apreo, and veteran developer of file-policy enforcement tools. "This is essential for detecting the file-sharing applications that install software on individual workstations to trade MP3s instead of using a central server. In this scenario, there is no single, central computer or point of operation that can be shut down to stop trading. It must be controlled at the file-level on employee desktops. File-level protection is also a necessity for finding all MP3 files, regardless of how they enter the company network."

File-level protection is how SoundJudgment complements the network-based solutions frequently used to monitor and manage music-swapping and MP3s, such as firewalls and Internet access monitors. These tools restrict network activity, but new ways around them are always emerging, such as email, "sneaker net," and new file-sharing applications that the tools are temporarily unaware of. SoundJudgment provides an additional layer of protection by detecting files that inevitably circumvent these solutions. SoundJudgment also enhances the protection provided by other file-detection products and configuration management tools by quickly finding files that are outside their scope.

In a Windows 2000 environment, the operating system may be used to set access policies for applications. SoundJudgment augments this capability by automatically identifying an application as an online file-sharing program. An access policy can then be invoked or updated based on SoundJudgment's search results.

"For best-practice piracy prevention, an organization must add SoundJudgment to the other tools they're using," said Mr. Coticchia. "This is the same idea as mixing host-, network- and file-based intrusion detection techniques for best-practice security."

SoundJudgment is a fully proven product that has been commercially available since 2000. It was the first product introduced with a sole focus on MP3-detection. SoundJudgment is currently managing MP3 files on thousands of workstations and network servers in a variety of industries including government, healthcare, manufacturing, education, and more.

Once installed, SoundJudgment scans specified local and network drives for MP3 files and their trading software, finding them even if they have been renamed or hidden inside compressed files. When these files are found, SoundJudgment takes a prescribed response action that can include deleting the files. SoundJudgment may be run on demand or a scheduled basis, with its operation completely hidden from end users.

The product is compatible with all Win32 operating systems -- Windows 95/98/ME and Windows NT/2000/XP. It supports all major PC networks including Novell, Windows NT and Windows 2000.

Pricing is $279 per 100 desktops.

To detect and manage other content files, Apreo provides AntiGame Plus(TM), which can locate games or any other application file that needs to be controlled for productivity, security, or IT reasons. The company's ApreoFlex(TM) product detects application usage in real-time, allowing an organization to create and enforce usage policies for recreational, desktop programs, such as online music-swapping, games, or instant messaging.

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