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Network Access Control for SITA UK

ForeScout Technologies : 16 May, 2008  (Application Story)
Policy compliance software and centralised access control using CounterACT bring higher security to SITA UK's IT networks
ForeScout Technologies has announced that SITA UK has installed the CounterACT family of appliances across its locations. CounterACT plugged into the SITA UK network locations in just hours, enabling centralised NAC and policy compliance management in days versus weeks.

For Mike Carr, IT Security Manager at SITA UK, this addition of CounterACT as part of the company's security initiative is business-enabling. He said: "As business demands grow, more users and more and diverse types of service devices are attaching to our network - from VoIP phones to closed circuit TVs. One of our key aims is to control this network access with high confidence that every user and service device complies with our security policies - and is productive − from the moment they connect. With CounterACT, we have exceeded that requirement. CounterACT's easy-to-implement, easy-to-use policy compliance engine helps us write and push policies tailored in real-time to address issues arising in our dynamic network. As a result, every device in every location on our network is identified and examined in real-time, and every deviation from policy is caught and addressed appropriately."

Carr also noted that, because CounterACT is a clientless out-of-band solution, the total cost of deployment was considerably less than it would have been had they selected their switch provider's solution: "CounterACT plugged into our existing infrastructure without the need for costly upgrades or hardware changes … which meant we didn't have to reinvest in standard network switches and routers and there was zero downtime for our users."

CounterACT combines clientless network access control (NAC) and signatureless intrusion prevention to ensure all connected and connecting devices are in compliance with network security policies and are free of self-propagating threats. CounterACT seamlessly integrates into any network environment without requiring costly upgrades or infrastructure changes, and enables enterprises to tailor enforcement actions to match the level of policy violations, ensuring user disruption only occurs when it is warranted or required by the IT staff.

In addition to traditional security issues, today's enterprises - like SITA UK - face a steady influx of vulnerabilities introduced by contractors, guests and mobile/home employees who are able to bypass physical security and gain network connection inside the perimeter defences. CounterACT addresses this problem by enforcing network security policies across all managed and unmanaged network devices, including desktops and laptops as well as non-OS devices such as VoIP phones, handhelds and network printers, without the need for a software agent of any kind.

"CounterACT offers companies like SITA UK the tools needed to speed centralised enforcement and remediation at the group, user or device level" said Ray Wizbowski, vice president of marketing for ForeScout. "Using CounterACT's policy management tools, IT personnel can detect threats - in real-time - then draft and push highly granular policies, tailoring enforcements to match the level of violations so that they protect user productivity but minimise user disruption."
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