DEWR cuts cables

The Federal Department of Employment and Workplace Resources (DEWR) is deploying what it claims to be the largest, secure, wireless LAN in Australia to 3000 job search kiosks.

IBM is rolling out the network, which is expected to be fully implemented by May this year, to 1270 job seeker sites. Implementation of the network, which started about 12 months ago, is intended to help reduce operating expenses and create a more flexible Web-based environment for job seekers nationally through DEWR's Job Search Express portal via Pathfinder kiosks, which are located in more than 950 Job Network member agencies and 320 Centrelink offices across Australia.

The deployment of a Cisco Aironet 1100 Series wireless access point at each site will reduce infrastructure costs because each kiosk is connected to DEWR's network at speeds of up to 11Mbits/sec, by wireless technology rather than through traditional cabling, officials said.

According to DEWR communications and IT security manager Ian Rose, the wireless technology is more economical to install and maintain than cabling, and the kiosks are easier to move than in a cabled environment.

IBM is deploying the network using Cisco products, including wireless Extensible Authentication Protocol (EAP), Temporal Key Integrity Protocol (TKIP) encryption and firewall.

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