RealTime IT News

ISS Plans Multi-Purpose Security Appliance

With network security high atop every IT department's checklist, Atlanta-based Internet Security Systems plans to roll out a multi-purpose security appliance that promises to untangle the mess of securing all layers of an enterprise network.

The ISS plan for a series of security appliances, codenamed 'Proventia', is aimed at eliminating the need for standalone firewalls and gateway anti-virus software and replace them with an all-in-one system offering richer security capabilities.

The first VCR-sized appliance -- Proventia A -- will offer a maximum aggregate bandwidth of 200 Mbps for one network segment and will integrate firewall filters, VPN gateway, layer 7 application filters, DoS protection and gateway antivirus software into a single device.

By year's end, the A-Series appliance will include spam and content filtering, ISS said.

"This series is designed to eliminate the need for managing and maintaining such technologies in multiple standalone forms," the company said of Proventia-A, which starts at $9,995. Later this year, the plan is to ramp up the ISS appliances to protect up to four network segments at a maximum aggregate bandwidth of 1,200 Mbps. Those appliances will go for about $53,000.

ISS, which competes with Network Associates , RSA Security and Symantec in the enterprise security space, said the appliances will be powered by its existing RealSecure software and will share a common management and security event correlation.

The Proventia-A Series are being marketed as appliances that will proactively stop threats through advanced technology that detects, prevents and responds to both known and unknown threats. Specifically, the ISS said the appliances can identify both known and unknown attacks. It has been designed to identify and block attack scenarios that circumvent existing firewalls and prevent attacks with TCP resets.

The ISS Proventia A Series includes four appliance models and offers protection up to 1200 Mbps aggregate bandwidth on up to four network segments, including options for 10/100/1000 Mbps copper and 1 Gbps fiber network access, the company said.

Down the line, ISS said the Proventia-C series will include upgrades like gateway antivirus protection, a VPN gateway, a DHCP server, Network Address Translation and spam/content filtering capabilities.

While ISS is not the first network security vendor to offer all-in-one appliances -- Symantec and NetContinuum and Cisco already sell multi-purpose devices -- the company's advantage is that it has an expansive IT clientele to market the Proventia series.

"Proventia appliances are intended to give customers a single point of protection to prevent all forms of attack, eliminating the need for standalone firewalls, gateway anti-virus and other traditional point technologies that alone fail to provide complete protection against today's complex threats," ISS CEO Tom Noonan said.

Highlighting research from IDC which shows that roughly 80 percent of all enterprise security products will be delivered via appliances, the ISS plans to use the customer base from its X-Force research unit to push marketing efforts.