Raptor and Milkyway add security features

Aiming to help managers secure networks that are adding more Internet users all the time, two leading network security companies are releasing product upgrades to make security management easier.

With the latest announcements, Raptor Systems Inc., Waltham, Mass., and Milkyway Networks Corp., Ottawa, are positioning themselves as security management companies, offering security solutions - rather than single products - for managing entire systems.

Milkyway, for example, has introduced a new Connection Monitoring feature as part of the latest upgrade to its Black Hole firewall, Version 3.0. The feature graphically presents user connections and network activity. Black Hole 3.0 also provides new graphical user interface (GUI)-based configuration management tools, which include drag-and-drop features, a new report-generating system and the ability to create security policies for service groups, address groups and user groups. In addition, Milkyway this fall will introduce a security auditing system, called Red Shift, which will identify and recommend solutions to network security loopholes.

Raptor, meanwhile, is upgrading its EagleNetWatch 3-D network visualization tool, which the company introduced in April. EagleNetWatch provides a 2-D or 3-D representation of activity and connections for network managers. Raptor's upcoming release of EagleNetWatch 1.3 in Q4 will allow managers to visualize activity on remotely connected Microsoft Corp. NT-based networks.

Agencies expanding Internet access are using security software and hardware to mitigate their security risks rather than cutting off Internet access to employees. But expansion can spell headaches for network security managers.

"People who are handling security are being told to deploy more security devices," said Mark Taylor, product marketing manager for Raptor, "but they're not getting more funding for staff."


As demand for security throughout enterprises grows, both Milkyway and Raptor are expanding their customers' ability to link remote users into enterprise systems.

Milkyway president Hung Vu said his customers are looking for solutions that can adapt to a changing network profile. "Some [products] may have security, but they lack flexibility," he said. Raptor's Eagle 4.0, available for Unix in August and for Windows NT in September, will support an Internet Engineering Task Force Internet Protocol security standard to allow managers to easily set up virtual private networks over the Internet.

Remote users, secure intranets and virtual private networks connecting sites are all part of enterprise networks. At the same time, Vu said, customers are looking for simplicity. "The more products you have, the more likely you are to have errors," he said. Milkyway's Black Hole, which runs on the Sun Microsystems Inc. OS or the Berkeley Software Design Inc. Unix platforms, remains the major component for securing and managing systems, both inside and outside an agency network.

Raptor's Eagle firewall offers an additional "flexibility" feature: It is the only firewall available that comes in both a Unix and a Windows NT version, according to Raptor.

Customers can use Milkyway's Black Hole and Raptor's Eagle to secure intranets, access the Internet and set up remote private networks.

Raptor Systems, Inc. products are available on GSA schedules held by Engineering Systems of Richmond Inc. and Sylvest Management Systems Corp. Milkyway currently is pursuing agreements with government resellers.


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