Understanding How Anti Spam Virtual Appliances Work in 4 Points

Understanding How Anti Spam Virtual Appliances Work in 4 Points

When it comes to protecting your company from spam and ransomware, most companies select one of two solutions: an anti-spam virtual appliance or a cloud-based email security. While these two options accomplish similar goals and incorporate many of the same features, there are a few key differences that make a cloud-based system the better solution for organizations that wish to take their digital security seriously.

So how do these systems differ from one another? The following points are some of the most important factors that illustrate why a cloud-based solution is your best bet.

Operating Infrastructure

First, it’s important to understand the differences in how the operating systems are set up. An anti spam virtual appliance can either be downloaded from the web or installed using a CD. The appliance is hosted on your own system, which means you need to handle all physical infrastructure and IT needs yourself.

A cloud based solution, on the other hand, is readily accessible no matter where you are. Rather than needing to figure out how to install and maintain your security system, you can rest easy letting a cloud-based team take care of the hard stuff. A simple MX record modification will be enough to activate the system, providing your staff with reliable security regardless of their location.

Accounting for Internet Failure

One of the greatest challenges associated with an anti-spam virtual appliance is the potential harm that can occur during a power or internet failure. When on-site power or internet access fails, the protective services offered by a security platform that is installed on your servers will also disappear. Emails that arrive during that period won’t be subjected to queuing or filtering, putting your company at risk of losing important messages.

On the other hand, a cloud system will continue to provide email queuing and other essential services, even when you lose power at your facility. Because everything is processed through the cloud, a power failure at your location would prevent the loss of any email messages. And because cloud solutions rely on multiple data centres, you can also have confidence that a power failure at one location won’t put your company at risk.

Bandwidth Consumption

Spam messages consume a significant amount of your bandwidth, especially during those moments when your email server is under attack. With a virtual appliance, those messages reach your environment before getting filtered out by the anti-spam software. While this keeps malware from reaching your inbox, this also means that your bandwidth continues to be affected by the “noise” of spam messages, which will reduce your available bandwidth and potentially limit other digital activities.

With a cloud solution, harmful spam messages are eliminated while still in the cloud. In other words, the spam content never even reaches your server in the first place. By reducing the load placed on your email server, it will operate at a much higher efficiency. Wasting less of your bandwidth on spam content will also give your team more capacity for performing other important digital tasks.


With an anti-spam virtual appliance, you typically pay for a one-size-fits-all solution. You will be required to pay continued licensing fees, and you’ll have limited options for upgrading your software (which you’ll also need to pay for). With a cloud appliance, you will be billed on a per-user basis -- allowing you to scale your security solution to your exact needs. This not only allows you to save money; it makes it much easier to scale your email security as your company continues to change.