CheckPoint provides secure, single sign-on

Check Point Software Technologies has announced network administration software that for the first time combines Internet protocol (IP) addresses with user identities.

The company announced on Monday that its new Meta IP User-to-Address Mapping (UAM) software works in conjunction with Check Point's FireWall-1 and Virtual Private Network security software to allow network administrators to match users and security profiles with IP addresses.

The UAM technology available in META IP is the key software that integrates the mapping of IP addresses with individual users, said Walt Conner, Check Point's director of public relations. Because UAM creates a historical log that identifies users with IP addresses, Check Point can now trace attempted violations of security policy to a specific individual.

Previously, network administrators were forced to either require users to sign on to both the network operating system and the firewall, or to compromise security by setting policies based on IP addresses with no knowledge of which employee was at a given IP address.

"Integrating UAM with FireWall-1 and VPN-1 allows administrators, for the first time ever in a dynamic network environment, to automatically and transparently implement security policies customized to the specific needs of each individual user group of users," said Asheem Chandna, vice president of marketing and business development for Check Point Technologies.

In addition, network managers will no longer have to manually administer and oversee multiple sign-ons, a significant time savings, said Grant Asplund, a Check Point spokesman.

The UAM technology is currently available worldwide as part of Check Point's Meta IP 4.1 software, which is available in both Standard and Enterprise editions. The Enterprise edition starts at $US9,995 for 1,000 nodes. The Meta IP 4.1 Standard edition is priced at $445 for 100 nodes.

The integrated identification system fulfills an as yet unmet need, said Bruce Robertson, vice president of the META Group, a Stamford, Connecticut market research firm.

"They are doing the right thing," Robertson said. "It's an important step forward in user group-based policy management.

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