Secure Computing Debuts Authentication Appliance

The security company introduced a new line of devices that promise to offer authentication and access for applications and network resources on a single appliance.

Secure Computing introduced a new device that promises to integrate the user authentication and network defense tools offered in the companys existing products into a single appliance for managing enterprise IT permissions.

Dubbed the SafeWord SecureWire AIM (identity and access management) appliance, the device promises to marry Secure Computings firewall, content management and two-factor authentication technologies into one device capable of managing log-on requirements for almost any type of IT network, computer or application.

By pulling those tools together, the company maintains that the SecureWire appliance also makes it easier for users to monitor and manage their various authentication systems and policies. Another benefit touted with the introduction of the new device is its ability to help companies manage compliance issues related to information security.

Secure Computing claims that the machine can be used to automate access to VPNs, Web-based applications and e-mail clients, in addition to offering the ability to host and manage internal access methods for LAN connections, WLANs (wireless LANs), and mainframe computers.


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In illustrating the need for such a device, Secure Computing executives pointed to research conducted by Gartner that contends that the market for identity management and authentication technologies will reach $4 billion by 2009.

The SafeWord SecureWire appliance was designed with users of Microsofts Active Directory in mind, which also allows companies to better utilize their existing authentication technologies, executives for the company said.

"We think that were unique in that we can offer across the board access and ID management for both internal and external applications," said Jay Goldlist, general manager of Identity, Access and SMB Products for Secure Computing.

"We looked at our customer base and saw a sweet spot around Active Directory and realized that we could pull everything into one device that helps IT to solve a lot of problems.

In addition to providing access controls, the appliance can also be used to apply and monitor policies related to corporate compliance regulations, Goldlist said.

The appliances ship with handheld security tokens that can be used to create unique passwords for use with the authentication system.

Another benefit being touted by Secure Computing is the devices ability to simplify the management of multiple authentication systems into a single set of controls that can be used to ensure that security patches and other updates can be administered uniformly, rather than on an individual basis to each application or computer.

The company is selling three different versions of the appliance aimed at large enterprises, smaller enterprises, and small and midsize businesses.

The SecureWire 100 supports up to 100 concurrent users and will retail for $3,999, while the SecureWire 500 will cost $59,995, and the SecureWire 2500 will retail for $99,995.


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