Palo Alto Networks Delivers 'Read-Only' Facebook

Gives enterprises more control over which employees can use Facebook, when, and for what purposes

Jun 08, 2010, 09:00 ET from Palo Alto Networks

SUNNYVALE, Calif., June 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Companies can now implement "read-only" Facebook policies in the workplace with next-generation firewalls from Palo Alto Networks™, the network security company. New, finer-grained control over who uses the popular social networking application and for what purposes means companies can enable Facebook for employees that need it for their jobs, while limiting its functionality for other workers who use it primarily for personal reasons.

This kind of granular control over the use of Facebook – by user, group, content or even time of day – is unique to Palo Alto Networks' next-generation firewall. As a result, IT security managers are better equipped to prevent leaks of corporate data, improve worker productivity, and reduce security threats such as malware and viruses that increasingly use Facebook and other applications to invade the enterprise.

"Our message to IT professionals is 'yes, you can,'" said Rene Bonvanie, vice president of worldwide marketing, Palo Alto Networks. "Yes, you can safely enable applications like Facebook in your workplace. Yes, you can reap the rewards of social networking while mitigating the risks. Our next-gen firewall is the great enabler of Enterprise 2.0 apps."

How and Why: Read-Only Facebook

Imagine a manufacturing organization where certain members of the marketing group have "read-only" access to Facebook to monitor a competitor's social marketing efforts – without being able to post personal status updates or comment on friends' updates. The corporate communications team might have full use of Facebook, including applications and chat, in order to communicate with journalists. The legal team may have no access to Facebook, while the human resources (HR) staff has complete access but only between 12 p.m. and 2 p.m.

In fact, organizations can get extremely granular by enabling or disabling discrete Facebook functions:

  • Base access to Facebook
  • Facebook posting
  • Facebook chat
  • Facebook mail (messages)
  • Facebook apps
  • Facebook Social Plug-ins

All permitted traffic can be scanned for threats or confidentiality.

The new "read-only" Facebook functionality is available now at no cost to Palo Alto Networks customers.

Information on more than 1,000 applications that are identified by Palo Alto Networks can be found in Applipedia, part of the company's Application and Threat Research Center. Visit the online resource to find the latest news, commentary, and discoveries on applications and threats at

About Palo Alto Networks

Palo Alto Networks™ is the network security company. Its next-generation firewalls enable unprecedented visibility and granular policy control of applications and content – by user, not just IP address – at up to 10Gbps with no performance degradation. Based on patent-pending App-ID™ technology, Palo Alto Networks firewalls accurately identify and control applications – regardless of port, protocol, evasive tactic or SSL encryption – and scan content to stop threats and prevent data leakage. Enterprises can for the first time embrace Web 2.0 and maintain complete visibility and control, while significantly reducing total cost of ownership through device consolidation. For more information, please visit

Palo Alto Networks, "The Network Security Company," the Palo Alto Networks Logo and App-ID are trademarks of Palo Alto Networks, Inc. in the United States. All other trademarks, trade names or service marks used or mentioned herein belong to their respective owners.

SOURCE Palo Alto Networks