Zix Corporation, a global provider of protection, management, and delivery solutions for electronic communications, today announced that its Web Inspector™ Web content filtering solution can help companies keep online shopping in the workplace to a minimum. According to Researching Consulting Firm Brand Keys, half of all consumers plan to do some of their Christmas shopping online this year, up substantially from last year’s 42.5 percent.

“The holiday season is the busiest time for online shopping, especially during work hours,” said Steve Irons, director of corporate sales for ZixCorp. “Companies want to be able to control employee Internet use, yet not have to completely restrict them from using it for non work-related issues. One unique feature that we offer to our customers is the ability to remind users that they’re attempting to surf a non-business related site but still provide them access and also limit the amount of time a user is allowed to surf on a specific category. Web Inspector helps ensure that policies are being upheld without adversely affecting morale or corporate culture.”

Web Inspector™ helps companies uphold Internet use policies and guard against excessive non-business surfing or other unsuitable Internet activities. Web Inspector monitors, manages and, if necessary, blocks access to inappropriate sites, based on an organization’s acceptable use policy. Web Inspector also has the ability to control Web usage by file type (mp3, exe, wav, zip, etc.), number of bytes downloaded, and the capability to set surf time quotas by category and bandwidth usage with flexible, easy-to-use reporting and real-time alert capabilities.

In addition to controlling seasonal personal purchases, Web Inspector helps companies protect themselves against the growing exposure to potential legal action caused by illegal downloads. Employees who engage in copyright infringement or other illegal activities such as gambling can cause legal problems. Innocent employees exposed to pornographic or other unacceptable material in the workplace can file harassment or other types of lawsuits. Web filtering also reduces or eliminates employee disciplinary action and firings due to inappropriate Web use.

“The Internet is a vital business tool that can increase employee productivity and streamline communication, but it’s important to assure that it not be abused,” said Dennis Heathcote, vice president of strategy and products for ZixCorp. “Web Inspector isn’t designed to curtail reasonable activities like booking travel or checking stock prices, but it is designed to avoid clogged bandwidth, misuse, and potentially harmful activity. It’s a cost-effective management solution that enables companies to protect their assets and reduce risks.”