Senforce Releases New Shield
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Rappore Technologies and its "wireless security program," Rappore Shield, are no more. In their place we now have Senforce Technology (derived from the words "security" and "enforce"), and with it, Senforce Shield. With the name change comes a new focus, plus an updated version of the Shield product to versions 1.5.
Scott Richards, vice president of product management at Senforce says Senforce is selling off the intellectual property and patents it has from Rappore's early days working with Bluetooth to move in the direction of "security for mobile users -- people with a laptop moving around, connecting on hotspots or otherwise."
Senforce Shield 1.5, like the previous 1.2 version, is a firewall-type product for laptop users connecting on the road. Using "WhereAware" location awareness technology that can tell where the user is based on the network settings, it can adjust accordingly to get the right connection settings.
The software provides four different shield state levels: fully blocking everything, limited use with Stateful Packet Inspection, a custom level (if using software that doesn't work with SPI, you can turn it off), and finally, no shield at all, which tends to be reserved for users on the in-house network.
"We let them drop [the protection] on the wired connection," says Richards, "but keep it on the wireless. We can keep the security policy for wired and wireless separate."
If the laptop is in an unrecognized setting, the software goes to "full shield" mode and blocks all incoming and outgoing traffic until the user intervenes.
Because the software works at the kernel level, making its decisions about security as packets pass through, it's below the level of virtual private networks (VPNs) and will let the VPN tunnels work without obstruction.
The software will also provide a numerical or visual image of packets being sent, received, or dropped.
Senforce 1.5 is $49.95 for a singe user license, with lower pricing available for quantity purchases. The software runs on computers with Windows 2000 or XP with 802.11a or b. It comes with Microsoft Windows Hardware Quality Labs (WHQL) certification.
The company is developing a server/client-based product using .NET technology to control and enforce security policy.