Nemx Software: Canada’s Spam-Fighting Secret?

Founded in 1994, Nemx Software provides content security solutions for Microsoft Exchange servers. The small firm, consisting of only seven full-time staff members, provides anti-spam, anti-virus and content filtering solutions for Fortune 500 companies. Now the Ottawa, Canada-based company has tailored its e-mail monitoring capabilities to meet the needs of small- and medium-sized business.

Nemx believes that somewhere in the race to find secure content management solutions for large corporations, many small- and mid-sized businesses got left behind, finding their requirements ignored by software that’s too complex, invariably inflexible, and simply too expensive. Consequently, the Nemx family of secure content management products offers complete protection for Exchange Server against spam, viruses and other unauthorized intruders — at a price that’s small-business friendly.

Available in either introductory or advanced editions for Exchange 5.5, 2000 and 2003, Nemx products include Power Tools for Exchange, SecurExchange Anti-Virus, and SecurExchange Small Business Server Edition.

Power Tools for Exchange manages offensive or unauthorized content, filters viruses and spam, and adds consistent signatures, disclaimers or addresses to company email.

SecurExchange Anti-Virus protects against known threats from external e-mail sources. SecurExchange, the SBS Edition, safeguard Microsoft’s Small Business Server software with an all-in-one filtering system.

With SecurExchange, the Small Business Server Edition, system administrators can monitor or filter out offensive e-mails and strip unwanted file attachments, while protecting Internet connections from viruses at the STMP/Internet Connector level. The result is small businesses stop wasting resources on unwanted junk e-mail.

John Young, Nemx Software president, said if a small business has the technical know-how to setup and operate and Exchange server, then installing and monitoring e-mail is a no-brainer.

“Our software looks and feels like a Microsoft product,” Young said. “It’s tightly configured with the Exchange System Manager so system administrators don’t need to learn a new application to use it. We’re a small company, too. We can relate to what small businesses need in terms of features and cost factors.”

The software can handle 5- to 400-users, but Young said most of Nemx’s customers have between 50- and 100-users. The advanced edition of the software is available on a per-user or per-mailbox basis. E-mail protection for five users costs $499, 25 users runs $825 and 50 users costs $1,249. Security policy updates and technical support is free for the first 90-days; 20 percent of the purchase price for a year of support thereafter. And Nemx offers a 30 day free trial so small businesses can get a sense of the e-mail monitoring system before they buy.

“Everybody that buys the software does so on day-one or on the 31st day,” Young said. “There’s nothing in between once the software is downloaded and running on an Exchange server.”

Put to the Test

Schukra of North America makes lumbar and comport seating systems for some of the world’s best known automotive and airline companies. Schukra has been using Nemx Power Tools software since March 2003.

Mike Stiers challenge, as the Exchange Administrator for Schukra, was to find a way to stem the flow of spam polluting employees’ inboxes.

“We have 250 end users and everyone was receiving a significant amount of spam. For example, many employees received more than 200 unwanted e-mail messages every weekend,” Stiers said. “Many of our employees were disturbed by the offensive content within the unsolicited e-mails. Administrators at help desk were frustrated they had to take the time to educate employees about spam. Meanwhile, back-up systems were slow due to e-mail overload.”

At corporate level, Stiers estimated that spam was costing Schukra $200,000 in lost productivity each year. The average employee spent five minutes per day dealing with spam, totaling a cost of approximately $800 per employee on annual basis

Schukra implemented Nemx’s Power Tools for Microsoft Exchange 2000. The content management software suite secured Schukra’s Exchange e-mail server spam, viruses and other unwanted intruders. Nemx Power Tools filter incoming and outgoing e-mails by blocking messages identified as spam and/or having offensive content, before they reach employees’ desktops.

“It’s an amazing product for the price, ” Stiers said. “We looked at freeware products, but they couldn’t do what we needed and offered little support. We looked at content filtering systems from major vendors, but couldn’t justify the price. For under $1,000 we deployed Power Tools and killed 95 percent of the junk out of the gate.”

Stiers estimates that Nemx Power Tools blocked more than 76,000 spam messages since he installed the software. He estimates the company has recouped $200,000 in employee productivity from deploying Power Tools, and there has been a dramatic reduction in spam-related calls to Schukra’s help desk.

But spammers are using virus-like methods to avoid blacklisting and get their messages into as many e-mail inboxes as possible in the shortest amount of time. Stiers said Nemx’s content filtering capabilities are impressive, it’s Concept Manager looks are more than just keywords to determine whether an e-mail is wanted or unwanted junk.

“It’s cheap and effective,” Stiers said. “Power Tools with Concept Manager offers us everything we need to combat spam.”

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