Ecessa Adds Greater Security to WAN Link Controllers

Ecessa-formerly known as Astrocom-is integrating more security into its WAN link controllers through its new ShieldLink product family. ShieldLink includes integrated firewall and VPN capabilities, which gives SMEs greater security and reliability in the management of their Internet traffic and a secure communications link between sites. Ecessa's PowerLink products worked with existing firewalls, but customers had been pushing the company to integrate firewall and VPN capabilities into a single device.

A week after changing the company's name, Ecessa is bringing greater security features to its WAN link controllers.

Ecessa-formerly known as Astrocom-unveiled March 10 its new ShieldLink family of WAN link controllers, which includes a built-in firewall and VPN (virtual private network) gateway. In addition, the new lineup offers better flexibility in defining access control.

The ShieldLink products are designed to give small- to mid-sized enterprises a single network device they can use for greater control and security in managing their Internet traffic and Web sites, said Marc Goodman, director of marketing.

Ecessa has been offering its PowerLink WAN link controllers in conjunction with existing firewall and VPN technologies, said Jason Breyer, vice president of sales.

"We were looking to consolidate things," Breyer said. "New businesses don't always have existing firewalls. We have consistently heard from customers and prospects that they ... also want firewall and VPN capabilities [in their Ecessa devices]."

The company has been working on the new ShieldLink technology for more than a year.

Having the firewall and VPN technology integrated into the devices saves SMEs the costs of implementing and managing multiple new networking products, the Ecessa officials said. It also means continuous Internet traffic uptime and secure communications between sites. The VPN technology uses the IPsec protocols.

Along with the greater integrated security features, the ShieldLink devices also distribute traffic among multiple and diverse network links and link aggregation, load balancing and failover of inbound and outbound traffic, and site failover and fallback.

A channel bonding feature ensures that multiple WAN links-such as cable, xDSL, T1 and wireless-are combined into a single large network connection, which allows for greater available bandwidth and reliability, according to officials.

"Reliability is key," Goodman said.

ShieldLink is available in multiple configurations, including 100 and 250 for single sites and 55, 200 and 250EHQ for multiple sites. It can be used as a standalone secure WAN link controller or in conjunction with existing PowerLink products.