the Pipeline

Who goes there?

Computer security depends in large part on making sure the people who sign on to a system are who they say they are. But the more you force them to prove and verify their identity — through passwords, fingerprints or other means — the less user-friendly your systems become.

The balance that has to be struck is between verifying identity and allowing access. To that end, Oblix Inc. has released SHAREid Version 2.0,

a federated identity solution that allows users to access multiple systems through a single sign-on.

The system allows companies to connect partners and customers to important systems via the Web.

SHAREid conforms to several standards to make it interoperable and is in use at

the Navy's Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command, and at several commercial businesses.

Memory Experts International Inc. has released a couple of new memory products that require biometric authentication to use.

ClipDrive Bio, an external flash storage device, uses biometric authentication. The USB-based product ships with dual partitions, one open and one secure.

Plug the memory unit into a standard USB port and the public partition is available right away. Users have to unlock the secure partition with a fingerprint, according to company officials. The storage capacity across the product line ranges from 64M to 4G.

The secure side also encrypts all data written to it with an Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) 128-bit key. Users can add a password to make it even more secure.

Having a secure biometric drive coupled with AES-based encryption, adds an extra

level of security that provides a secure method of transferring and sharing sensitive

information, company officials say.

The company's other product, the Outbacker, comes in 20G and 40G models, offering the same fingerprint authentication and AES 128-bit encryption. The Outbacker is hardened for use in extreme conditions.

Q1 Labs Inc. has released QRadar Version 3.0. Radar is an acronym for Real-time Anomaly

Detection and Resolution.

As the name implies, QRadar detects unusual activity on a computer network and alerts security managers. The new release includes enhancements in threat management, behavior modeling, alerting and


Company officials say QRadar's advantage is that it sees the big picture of the network, rather than focusing on one isolated segment of it. It studies the systems, applications and users, and it charts their normal behavior. That allows QRadar to recognize anomalies — those deviations from normal patterns that suggest something may be amiss.

The new version features a user-friendly Threat View to flag major threats, including denial-of-service attacks, scans, worms, stealth activity, Web-based attacks and protocol misuse, and to review them on a single screen. It also includes a threat management console with a summary of unresolved alerts sorted by priority and offers a report generator for later analysis.

Where are you?

Telemorphic Inc. has released MultiViewer, an extension of ESRI's ArcGIS software. MultiViewer adds advanced geographic imaging and visualization capabilities to the ArcGIS desktop, according to Telemorphic officials.

With MultiViewer, ArcGIS users can compare multiple scanned maps, aerial photos, satellite images and other

data. It allows easy navigation within map views using pan and zoom controls or a drag-and-drop index.

MultiViewer works with any geospatial data that ArcGIS can display, regardless of where the data resides.

GeoSpatial Experts LLC is reselling a new digital camera from Ricoh Co. Ltd. that features automatic image geocoding. The Caplio Pro G3 encodes geographical information with the images.

Coupled with an optimized version of GeoSpatial Experts' GPS-Photo Link software, the Ricoh camera becomes part of a system for photo mapping. The software uses the images and the data encoded in them to create Web pages with satellite photos, topographic maps or street maps. The system can also create ESRI Shape files for easy integration with desktop mapping software such as ESRI's ArcView GIS.

Smaller iron

To mark the 40th anniversary of its System/360 mainframe, IBM Corp. has launched a new system, the z890, to bring mainframe technology to midsized organizations.

The z890 is a smaller, less expensive version of the z990 "T-Rex," IBM's flagship mainframe. It features new technology that allows customers to consolidate Java-based applications onto the computer. IBM officials are also touting it as an easy platform to migrate to from Hewlett-Packard Co. or Sun Microsystems Inc. Unix implementations.

IBM officials are introducing the new mainframe along with a more affordable version of its Shark Enterprise Storage Server. At $100,000 and up, the Shark ESS 750 is still not cheap, but

it is less expensive than the 800.

FCW in Print

In the latest issue: Looking back on three decades of big stories in federal IT.


  • Shutterstock image: looking for code.

    How DOD embraced bug bounties -- and how your agency can, too

    Hack the Pentagon proved to Defense Department officials that outside hackers can be assets, not adversaries.

  • Shutterstock image: cyber defense.

    Why PPD-41 is evolutionary, not revolutionary

    Government cybersecurity officials say the presidential policy directive codifies cyber incident response protocols but doesn't radically change what's been in practice in recent years.

  • Anne Rung -- Commerce Department Photo

    Exit interview with Anne Rung

    The government's departing top acquisition official said she leaves behind a solid foundation on which to build more effective and efficient federal IT.

  • Charles Phalen

    Administration appoints first head of NBIB

    The National Background Investigations Bureau announced the appointment of its first director as the agency prepares to take over processing government background checks.

  • Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.)

    Senator: Rigid hiring process pushes millennials from federal work

    Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) said agencies are missing out on younger workers because of the government's rigidity, particularly its protracted hiring process.

  • FCW @ 30 GPS

    FCW @ 30

    Since 1987, FCW has covered it all -- the major contracts, the disruptive technologies, the picayune scandals and the many, many people who make federal IT function. Here's a look back at six of the most significant stories.

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