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News

Ethernet encryption certification

InfoGuard : 09 July, 2009  (New Product)
The EANTC has certified InfoGuard's Ethernet Multipoint Encryption for performance, functionality and interoperability
InfoGuard has received full certification from the European Advanced Networking Test Centre (EANTC) for its EGM Ethernet Multipoint Encryption Solution.
The detailed tests carried out by EANTC showed that InfoGuard met all necessary performance, functionality and interoperability requirements to secure the data across modern Ethernet services. In contrast to Layer 3 VPN/IPSec solutions, the test results showed that InfoGuard's EGM was able to deliver wirespeed performance of 99.99% while latency did not exceed 263 microseconds under challenging real-world scenarios.

"Layer 2 encryption is growing in popularity because it solves a range of Layer 3 VPN/IPSec encryption problems while offering the same flexibility, " explains Reto Isaak, Product Manager for InfoGuard AG. "Encrypting IPSec traffic leads inevitably to increased data package sizes by adding additional header and trailer information. Consequentially, throughput is reduced considerably while latency is added due to fragmentation of oversized packages which is a serious problem in today's networks. Therefore organisations with the need to guarantee confidentiality without compromising performance related aspects should always consider a Layer 2 encryption solution."

The test carried out by EANTC concentrated on the Ethernet throughput and latency, when data is encrypted using AES 256 bit with state-of-the-art symmetric key exchange mechanisms. In trials with Unicast, Multicast and Broadcast traffic, the encryption units made use of 99.99% of the available bandwidth. Even under the most difficult scenarios, using fully meshed Unicast traffic with 64 Byte Ethernet frames, the simulated network reached a sustained throughput of 97 percent. The report notes that "the results were surprisingly consistent, introducing at most between 223 and 262 microseconds of latency, regardless of the frame size".

To test the compatibility and functionality of InfoGuard EGM, EANTC examined the devices delivery of encrypted Ethernet services over MPLS Backbone (Multiprotocol Label Switching). In the test centre, the units were subjected to strong variations in data volume and signal delays with results showing no significant additional latency.

Stability tests showed that InfoGuard EGM can securely transmit data even when data packages are delayed or lost due to 'loss of frame'. This simulates the real world as service providers cannot guarantee perfect connections and at some point will experience delays or data losses during transmission. The load tests proved that the InfoGuard units worked failure free and encrypted data at rates of 90 Mbps over a timeframe of 48 hours.

"What makes these tests significant is that they simulate realistic and most difficult conditions," explains Reto Isaak. "EANTC are highly respected, thorough and pull no punches in their testing method. The results speak for themselves - especially as the threat of data in transit interception becomes more widespread and lucrative to organised criminals."
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