Verizon Online Beefs Up Its Security Services With New Cyber Locks

NEW YORK - Computers crash. Hard drives melt down. And one virus can erase hundreds of files, photos and music in a nanosecond.

So Verizon Online is making it easier for residential customers to back up important data in a separate storage server to help protect it from hackers, viruses and hard-drive crashes. Additionally, Verizon Online has closed its network to illegal e-mails and offers firewall and virus protection through MSN Premium, at no additional charge.

"Today's digital family needs help staying organized and protecting important data," said Frank Nelson, director - product management for Verizon Online. "To preserve keepsakes like home movies of baby's first steps, last year's tax returns, and yesterday's masterfully mixed MP3, Verizon Online is offering secure backup services and storage. We're also introducing security protection to help protect customers from spam, viruses and worms."

Verizon Online also offers a complete suite of securities services for businesses. There's more information on those services at http://business.verizon.net/security/.

Backup Storage Facility

Analysts estimate that 31 percent of U.S. households have digital cameras, 30 million households bank online and 25 million buy songs online from providers like Rhapsody's Listen.com. Music, movies and photos all require large amounts of file space. In 2003, there were 140,000 widespread viruses that ranged from annoying to highly toxic and destructive.

Verizon Online's new service, My Storage Place, is similar to a safe deposit box for digital keepsakes, wills, MP3s and word files. Storage comes in four different locker sizes:

  • 50 MB (megabytes) of storage -- $4.95 per month
  • 100 MB of storage -- $6.95 per month
  • 500 MB of storage -- $9.95 per month
  • 1 GB (gigabytes) of storage -- $19.95 per month

Once the data is stored, customers and pre-approved guests -- with a user name and password -- can access their data lockbox from any Internet-connected computer. My Storage Place customers can also schedule regular backups to keep their files up-to-date.

Verizon Online is using BigVault Storage Technologies to manage its private, expandable storage and backup services. The service is available to DSL customers at http://dslstart.verizon.net under the "My Web Space" tab.

Fighting Spam with Sender Verification Requirement

Verizon Online now blocks incoming e-mails from fake or forged e-mail addresses. By rejecting these e-mails, which are often spam, Verizon Online locked out more than 1.3 billion e-mails in three months from customers' mailboxes. Junk e-mail coming from valid e-mail addresses are swept into a separate spam mailbox by Verizon Online's SpamDetector.

Firewall and Virus Protection

In January, Verizon Online added MSN Premium Internet software that includes Virus Scan® and Personal Firewall Plus desktop protection from McAfee® Security to help customers protect their computers from viruses, online criminals, junk e-mail and pop-up ads. Current DSL customers can download MSN Premium at www.verizon.net/betterway. Once the software is downloaded, customers can activate the MSN security features on the Verizon Online with MSN co-branded page, by clicking on the security link.

In addition, a free 90-day trial of ZoneAlarm®'s firewall is available for customers. Other firewall services can be downloaded for free online or purchased in electronics or super stores.

Finally, Verizon Online provides customers with the latest information on current computer viruses and worms along with tips to avoid them in its security center -- http://www2.verizon.net/resource_center/internet_security_center.asp.

A Fortune 20 company, Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services, with approximately $68 billion in annual revenues. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States. Verizon is also the largest directory publisher in the world, as measured by directory titles and circulation. Verizon's international presence includes wireline and wireless communications operations and investments, primarily in the Americas and Europe. For more information, visit www.verizon.com.