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What is FOPE (Forefront Online Protection for Exchange)?

Forefront Online Protection for Exchange (FOPE) is one of the unsung heroes of the Microsoft Exchange world.

If you’ve been running Microsoft Exchange for your organization, chances are you’ve heard of Forefront Protection for Exchange. This is a software which sits on servers in the datacenter and monitors all incoming and outgoing email to protect against spam and malware threats (among other threats). One of the biggest concerns I hear from administrators, when considering email protection, is not feeling comfortable enough with their security experience to be responsible for something so critical as Forefront Protection for Exchange.

Forefront ONLINE Protection for Exchange (FOPE) can replace the need for installing and maintaining Forefront Protection for Exchange on your own infrastructure. This is Software as a Service (SaaS) provided by Microsoft on a per user basis. This takes the burden of email security off of your own IT staff, and puts it on Microsoft. No more worrying about security updates, and access rules. FOPE does all the hard work for you, yet gives you the granularity you desire for setting up additional rules company wide or even for individual mailboxes.

If you’re considering moving to Microsoft’s BPOS (Business Productivity Online Suite) or Office 365, you may be interested to know that FOPE is the backbone of email security for both services. In these cases FOPE sits in the background unnoticed filtering all of the spam and email-based threats known to the Microsoft world. The best part about it is that it just works! There is no need to configure anything, or set any anti-spam rules. In fact you don’t even have access to a control panel by default.  It needs to be requested from the BPOS or Office 365 support team.

About the author

Robert Borges

About Robert...

I have been in the IT industry since 1993 focusing mainly in networking. Though I got an early start as an amateur computer enthusiast, and wrote my first database app at age 12, I started my professional career working in the MIS department of one of the largest liquor distributors in the northeast. I started out there as a systems operator on the company’s two mainframe systems. From there I moved into PC support, and help design and implement the company’s first client-server network… This was back in the days of Win NT 3.51. I also worked on my first migration to NT 4.0 back then.

From there I went on to work with Novell 3.x and 4.x along with Windows domains and active directory environments. Working my way up from technician, to specialist, to administrator, and eventually all the way up to Sr. Engineer. I spent many years working for consulting firms, 9 of which I owned and operated my own firm.
Over the years, I have worked with (at an expert level) various versions of: Windows client and server operating systems (including Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2);various virtualization technologies (Hyper-V, Virtual Server, Virtual PC, VMware, etc…); MS-SQL server 6.5- 2008 R2; Exchange 4-2010, and much more.

I am now Director of Information Systems at Bay State Integrated Technology focusing on cloud computing and IT service, with expertise in: IT Infrastructure & Architecture, IT Security, and Cloud Computing platforms & technologies (SaaS, PaaS, and IaaS).

I am in a constant state of learning about new products, and new versions of products. Many of which we end up implementing in lab environments and sometimes for our clients. I have a pretty broad range of expertise and experience. It is my goal to share some of this experience on this blog to help enrich the IT community.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.robertborges.us/2012/03/it-security/what-is-fope-forefront-online-protection-for-exchange/

1 comment

  1. Susan

    Great article Robert. Nice info about Forefront Online Protection for Exchange.

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