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What is a Virus Scanning ICAP Server?
1/19/2023 - Brian O'Neill

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What is ICAP?

ICAP (Internet Content Adaptation Protocol) is a lightweight, transparent internet protocol capable of modifying HTTP messages. ICAP was initially proposed at the turn of the millennium as the need for scalable internet services became increasingly apparent. Global internet traffic was growing exponentially, and ICAP presented an efficient way of reducing the burden on monolithic servers to process high volumes of HTTP messages on their own.

How are ICAP Servers used?

ICAP servers are typically used to extend the services of proxy servers. They do so by performing specific content adaptation services on HTTP messages as they flow through a network. In this case, “content adaptation services” refers to many important, value-add operations such as virus scanning, language translation, ad insertion, content filtering, and more.

In effect, ICAP servers lighten the load experienced by proxy servers on a high-traffic network. A company can deploy an ICAP server to access its proxy server caches and perform its adjacent value-add services seamlessly.

What is a Virus Scanning ICAP Server, and What are its Advantages?

A virus scanning ICAP server is one which is deployed specifically to scan HTTP message contents for viruses (and other forms of malicious content) as those messages flow through a network.

Leveraging ICAP for virus scanning purposes is highly advantageous for several reasons, and it’s an extremely common practice as a result. These servers fit naturally into network chokepoints, which are ideal positions for any security policy. At the same time, they also increase the efficiency of high-traffic networks by reducing the need for proxy servers (which typically perform several different tasks at once) to scan each HTTP message for viruses by themselves. Their relative ease of deployment and maintenance makes them a particularly cost-effective security policy as well.

What is the Cloudmersive Virus Scanning ICAP Server?

The Cloudmersive Virus Scanning ICAP Server performs its value-add service by calling the Cloudmersive Virus Scanning API as HTTP messages pass through your network. The Virus Scanning API offers distinct security advantages, including continuously updated signatures for millions of threats and advanced, high-performance scanning capabilities. In addition, the Virus Scanning API provides customizable content security policies, allowing you to block or allow content including executables, invalid files, scripts, password-protected files, and more.

For more information on the Cloudmersive Virus Scanning ICAP server, please contact our sales team.

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