Software Automates Security Tasks

Hoping to cash in on the trend toward managed security services, startup OneSecure Inc. this week will launch what it is calling the industry's first security management platform.

Hoping to cash in on the trend toward managed security services, startup OneSecure Inc. this week will launch what it is calling the industrys first security management platform.

The service grew out of the Denver-based companys belief that existing security tools were too complex and required end users to be experts in TCP/IP, routing and applications.

OneSecures offering comprises a managed firewall service, a managed VPN (virtual private network), an IDS (intrusion detection service) and a scanning service. The IDS has a proprietary feature that collects logs from all the devices on a network and scans the data for known attack signatures.

OneSecure considers itself unique because, instead of using its personnel to manage a customers security operation and headaches, it takes an entirely software-based approach to the security management problem.

"Most of the other service providers have simply passed the problem on to themselves. We want to do with software what our competitors do with people," said Nir Zuk, chief technology officer at OneSecure.

The companys software automates many of the more time-consuming and mundane aspects of security administration, including the provisioning process, which can take several weeks when done manually.

"This is a cost-effective way of taking care of the security functions, and its much more proactive than we could be on our own," said Vijay Bobba, a partner with The McKenna Group, a consultancy in Mountain View, Calif., that uses OneSecures services. "We dont have to worry about anti-virus updates or patches."

Many of The McKenna Groups employees are on the road quite a bit and need to make sure that they have secure access to the corporate network when theyre away from the office, whether its at home or at a client site, Bobba said. OneSecures managed VPN and firewall services took away a lot of the companys worries about the security of its clients information.

"All of our employees have DSL [digital subscriber line] lines at home, which is an easy backdoor into the network," Bobba said. "We needed to protect our clients intellectual property and make sure that no one is coming in through that backdoor and looking around."

On the customers end, there is a Web-based GUI that enables users to go through a questionnaire and configure security settings on their networks. OneSecures software then automatically completes the task. Users can change the security settings via this same process.

The architecture enables customers to rid themselves of many security administration headaches while keeping some control over the process, a factor OneSecure officials consider crucial.