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  • Photos: RSA Conference 2011 Expo, part 2


    The expo floor is teeming with knowledge, solutions and possibilities: The Secunia booth. Splunk demoing their product. The Cenzic booth. The Motorola AirDefense booth. Ivan Ristic, the Director of Engineering at Qualys, talking about the IronBee open source web application firewall. Focused on the future. Stefan Frei, Secunia Research Analyst Director, during his well-attended presentation. The Microsoft booth. A crowd at the Symantec booth. The RSA Conference wall showing off 20 years of history.

  • One-time password authentication for MS DirectAccess


    Gemalto announced that its Strong Authentication Server and Protiva OTP Tokens have been integrated with Microsoft DirectAccess. The Protiva OTP token adds another layer of security to DirectAccess, requiring users to simply enter a one-time password generated by the token with a touch of a button for full access to their enterprise network. It is more ideal for mobile workers than traditional VPNs because it gives employees full access to the corporate network’s file shares, intranet websites, and line-of-business applications wherever they have an Internet connection. “We introduced DirectAccess in Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 to enhance enterprise productivity – mobile employees can always be connected and have the same user experience as when they are in the office, while administrators can manage remote computers any time they are connected,” said a Microsoft spokesperson. The Protiva Strong Authentication family includes SA Server to validate identities and a range of authentication tokens that allow enterprises to choose the solution that fits their needs best. Gemalto also introduced Protiva Mobile OTP, a secure and cost-effective new way for businesses and their employees to deploy two-factor authentication by simply using their mobile phones. One Time Password replaces static passwords with strong authentication and provides a convenient additional level of security for transactions and access control. Protiva Mobile OTP works with the popular handset platforms used in business today, including Blackberry, iPhone, the handsets running Java, Windows CE and Brew. Employees simply need to download the secure app onto their mobile phone, which is setup to immediately generate and receive OTPs using the phone as the interaction and computing device. Combining the mobile credential with their username and one-time-password grants employees the appropriate access to company resources such as a VPN, intranet, mail directory, digital signature, mail and Web pages. The solution is simple for IT administrators to deploy and provision, and is compatible with the majority of industry-leading IT infrastructure elements.

  • Information security pros stretched thin and overworked


    A study based on a survey of more than 10,000 information security professionals worldwide finds that a growing number of technologies being widely adopted by businesses are challenging information security executives and their staffs, potentially endangering the security of government agencies, corporations and consumers worldwide over the next several years. Conducted by Frost & Sullivan, the 2011 (ISC)2 Global Information Security Workforce Study (GISWS) says new threats stemming from mobile devices, the cloud, social networking and insecure applications, as well as added responsibilities such as addressing the security concerns of customers, have led to “information security professionals being stretched thin, and like a series of small leaks in a dam, the current overworked workforce may be showing signs of strain.” Conducted on behalf of (ISC)2, the study also shows a severe gap in skills needed industry-wide. Information security professionals admitted they needed better training yet reported in significant numbers that many of these technologies are already being deployed without security in mind. “In the modern organization, end-users are dictating IT priorities by bringing technology to the enterprise rather than the other way around,” said Robert Ayoub, global program director - network security for Frost & Sullivan. “Pressure to secure too much and the resulting skills gap are creating risk for organizations worldwide. “We can reduce the risks, however, if we invest now in attracting high-quality entrants to the field and make concurrent investments in professional development for emerging skills. As the study finds, these solutions are underway, but the question remains whether enough new professionals and training will come soon enough to keep global critical infrastructures in the private and public sectors protected.” “The good news from this study is that information security professionals finally have management support and are being relied upon and compensated for the security of the most mission-critical data and systems within an organization,” added Ayoub. “The bad news is that they are being asked to do too much, with little time left to enhance their skills to meet the latest security threats and business demands.” Other key findings from the study include:As of 2010, Frost & Sullivan estimates that there are 2.28 million information security professionals worldwide. Demand for professionals is expected to increase to nearly 4.2 million by 2015, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 13.2 percent, creating career opportunities for those with the right skills.Secure software development is a significant new area of focus for information security professionals worldwide. Application vulnerabilities ranked as the No. 1 threat to organizations by 72 percent of respondents, while 20 percent said they are involved in secure software development.Nearly 70 percent of respondents reported having policies and technology in place to meet the security challenges of mobile devices, yet mobile devices were still ranked second on the list of highest concerns by respondents. The study concludes that mobile security could be the single most dangerous threat to organizations for the foreseeable future.Cloud computing illustrates a serious gap between technology implementation and the skills necessary to provide security. More than 50 percent of respondents reported having private clouds in place, while more than 70 percent reported the need for new skills to properly secure cloud-based technologies.Professionals aren’t ready for social media threats. Respondents reported inconsistent policies and protection for end-users visiting social media sites, and just less than 30 percent had no social media security policies whatsoever.Viruses and worms, hackers and internal employees all fell in significance as top threats from 2008, the most recent year of the study.The main drivers for the continued growth of the profession are regulatory compliance demands, greater potential for data loss via mobile devices and mobile workforce, and the potential loss of control as organizations shift data to cloud-based services.Nearly two-thirds of respondents don’t expect to see any increase in budget for information security personnel and training in 2011.Salaries showed healthy growth despite a global recession, with three out of five respondents reported receiving a salary increase in 2010.Likely the largest study of the information security profession ever conducted, 10,413 information security professionals from companies and public sector organizations from around the world were surveyed in the fall of 2010, including 61 percent in the Americas, 22.5 percent in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, and 16.5 percent in Asia Pacific. Forty-five percent were from organizations with over 10,000 employees.

  • Managed file transfer with large enterprise clustering


    Axway introduced large enterprise clustering for its SecureTransport offering. SecureTransport simplifies and secures file transfers between people, sites, applications and external partners, providing visibility into information flows both within and outside of the organization, while ensuring compliance with global mandates. The new large enterprise clustering option extends SecureTransport’s standard clustering capabilities, integrates into an external database and scales up to 20 nodes to handle a virtually unlimited number of concurrent connections. Large enterprise clustering also adds policy-based management of server-initiated and server-side tasks, giving administrators finer-grained controls. Designed to handle both interactive, user-driven communications and automated file transfer, SecureTransport integrates easily into existing architectures. The solution is currently deployed in large enterprise environments and is capable of handling millions of daily file transfers. Axway SecureTransport facilitates FTP replacement – it is a highly scalable, managed service for all modes of managed file transfer over FTP/S, SSH-FTP, HTTP/S, SCP and AS2 – all fully integrated with Axway Transfer CFT. “Protecting business interactions in transit is important for any organization, but for those in highly regulated industries it becomes critical. And as companies look to formalize how they handle MFT, the desire to minimize the impact on the data center as it currently exists will be first and foremost in the minds of many,” said Dave Bennett, CTO of Axway. “All of our solutions, spanning multiple business interaction patterns, bring policy-based management and visibility to transactions both within and outside the enterprise. It is this vision that guides the development of SecureTransport.”

  • Distributed security architecture for security enforcement


    The new borderless organizations have dramatically changed the definition of how, when and where people work, causing a need to redefine the way security solutions are built and deployed. Driving this change is a new wave of mobility, virtualization and cloud technologies that have forced IT security administrators to deal with a multidimensional problem and to rethink how security must be implemented and enforced. To enable companies to conduct business without borders, Cisco is introducing a new highly distributed security architecture that manages enforcement elements like firewalls, Web proxies and intrusion-prevention sensors with a higher-level policy language that is context-aware to accommodate business needs. These next-generation scanning elements are independent of the physical infrastructure and can be deployed as appliances, modules and cloud services. Better suited to address today's security challenges, they are designed to know exactly who a user is, what role that user plays in the organization, and whether that user should be allowed access. Cisco SecureX Architecture includes: Context-aware security enforcement elements that are independent of the physical infrastructure and can be deployed in a highly distributed way.A context-aware policy language that helps manage the context-aware enforcement elements.Cisco AnyConnect, which tethers any device, anytime, from anywhere, into the security enforcement fabric.Virtual and cloud platforms that attach to Cisco's virtual data center switching capabilities.Cisco Security Intelligence Operations, a cloud-based service that provides global context and threat intelligence.Comprehensive, extensible APIs that allow Cisco's own management systems and partners to plug in and complete the security ecosystem.New context-aware capabilities for the Cisco Adaptive Security Appliance (ASA): The Cisco ASA will be the first to offer full context-aware firewalling and policy enforcement. By combining local context using Cisco TrustSec, global context from Cisco Security Intelligence Operations, and mobile insight from Cisco AnyConnect, the Cisco ASA allows businesses to gain visibility into their network infrastructure, provide better security, and create streamlined policies that correspond to business rules. Users, applications, data, reputation, devices, posture, threats, destinations, sources and locations are some of the components of the multifaceted context that the Cisco ASA will deliver. These will allow customers to extend their existing trusted firewall infrastructure to be consistent with the dynamic needs of their businesses and employees. Cisco AnyConnect Client Telemetry for Cisco Security Intelligence Operations: AnyConnect 3.0 adds real-time client-based threat telemetry to Cisco Security Intelligence Operations to bolster an existing footprint of more than 700,000 network and content security appliances. Telemetry from existing Cisco security services for e-mail, Web, intrusion prevention, firewall and cloud security services enable powerful global context and threat intelligence, ensuring fast and focused protection against a full range of malicious activity. With a footprint of more than 150 million AnyConnect and legacy VPN clients, this represents a huge step forward in the visibility and actionable threat intelligence that Cisco Security Intelligence Operations can provide. Other AnyConnect 3.0 highlights: Cisco AnyConnect 3.0 now supports Web security services delivered via Cisco IronPortTM Web Security Appliances and Cisco ScanSafe cloud security service.


Harnessing artificial intelligence to build an army of virtual analysts

PatternEx, a startup that gathered a team of AI researcher from MIT CSAIL as well as security and distributed systems experts, is poised to shake up things in the user and entity behavior analytics market.

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