RealTime IT News

Cisco's Integrated Security Push

Cisco Systems today announced 14 new network security products and services in three categories: security management, virtual private network and threat protection.

The rollout, which targets customers of all sizes, is part of the San Jose, Calif., company's effort to safeguard Internet protocol networks with components that are easy to install and maintain.

Among the offerings is IOS AutoSecure software, which allows IT managers to lock a router with a single command. The action disables non-essential operating systems processes, enforcing secure access and enabling secure forwarding features.

Also, new remote-access VPN Client software protects desktops against hackers and viruses. The application also supports multimedia and collaboration applications and has a redesigned interface. The move to desktops is part of Cisco's effort to reach beyond networking infrastructure to tally new revenues and soften the blow of any future hardware downturns.

Included in its threat protection products is Cisco Security Agent, which inspects operations on the desktop or server and looking for suspicious behavior between applications and the operating system.

In other Cisco news, the company will record an expense of between $200 million and $500 million related to its financing of an in-house startup, the Wall Street Journal reported today.

The charge, to be recorded in the company's first quarter beginning July 27, reflects the estimated value of stock options granted to the 270 employees of Andiamo Systems, a Cisco-backed firm specializing in data center networking equipment.

The expense, which was disclosed in Cisco's quarterly filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, comes as a result of new federal accounting rules that followed the Enron scandal.