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News

Smart card compliance for data centres and desktops

Avocent : 12 February, 2009  (New Product)
Smart card and common access card support expanded by Avocent to meet HSPD-12 compliance requirements for desktops and data centres.
Smart card compliance for data centres and desktops
Avocent has expanded its support for Smart Card/Common Access Card (CAC) technology for both desktop and the data centre environments. This technology helps US federal agencies and contractors comply with Homeland Security Presidential Directive 12, which mandates a common identification process for employees for security reasons.

"We work closely with customers in helping them meet federal directives. As a result Avocent is the first to support smart card readers in a digital appliance, and we are committed to continuing to help government agencies and their contractors to secure access to federal facilities and computer systems," said Ben Grimes, Avocent CTO. "We save agencies time and money by reducing the amount of readers they must purchase and administer. With Avocent's desktop to data center approach, we reduce redundant access procedures."

In the data centre, Avocent's DSView 3 Management Software and DSR switch appliances now support Smart Card/CAC reader technology. This is critical in enforcing and tracking who has access to which IT systems and data, and dictating who has control of data centre management capabilities inside government systems and facilities. This technology allows Smart Card/CAC readers to be located away from the data centre but still allows for secure connectivity to data center assets.

At the desktop, Avocent's SwitchView SC switch line is validated by the National Information Assurance Partnership (NIAP) Common Criteria to EAL 4+ and incorporates additional security features to ensure data protection in the secure environment without limiting the user experience. These features ensure users, such as security analysts, can use just one console to safely access data stored on multiple computers -- each operating at different levels of classification, saving time and reducing complexity. All Avocent Smart Card/CAC enabled products support the USB Chip/Smart integrated Circuit(s) Cards Interface Device (CCID) specification.

Avocent's broad line of Smart Card/CAC-supported solutions offers the following benefits to customers:

* Supports HSPD-12 guidelines - Support for remote Smart Cards/CAC readers enables secure remote access to all connected desktops with a single card reader.

* Centralised Management - DSView 3 software provides both out-of-band and in-band access to servers and equipment to assess data center health, and enables IT to remotely conduct operating system and other software repairs, and power management and monitoring.

* Centralised Authentication - Support for remote Smart Cards/CAC readers enables standardisation from desktop to data center.

According to Gartner, "The creation of a system that relies on a single CAC as a means of validating identity for physical and logical security in an enterprise will, over time, enhance security, reduce card misuse and promote cost savings. Furthermore, when implemented correctly, this single CAC-type system can be used to promote a convergence between IT and physical security by promoting the blending of technology, people and processes for the overall defense of the enterprise. In addition, by 2011, 70% of enterprises implementing smart cards for network authentication will (also) follow a CAC approach." From March 3, 2008, Gartner report "Using One Card for Access Control" ID Number: G00155502.
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