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Cost nosedives as Continental Airlines buys budget security system

Continental Airlines is rolling out a cut-price data security system to control user access and contain malicious security breaches.

It is the first large company to adopt Secure Lan Controller, a new product from ConSentry Networks.

The Secure Lan Controller appliance family, which fits in front of existing network routers and switches, tells network administrators exactly which users are affected by rogue data traffic.

Once they know which network clients are responsible for security breaches, companies can isolate threats on the network and stop them spreading to other users.

The system costs from £21 a year for each user protected.

Speaking at this week’s NetEvents IT symposium in Italy, Andre Gold, Continental Airlines director of information security, said, “ConSentry is the only supplier that has demonstrated the ability to inspect all traffic in real-time and associate that traffic with individual users.

“This is a distinct security advantage because we now have control not only over who is allowed on the network, but what resources and applications users are authorised to access.”

Gold said that Continental relied on a number of Cisco routers to run its network, and adopting a comparable network access system using Cisco’s much vaunted “self-defending network” platform, using new routers, would have cost the company around $4.5m (£2.6m).

A company-wide protection system using ConSentry’s boxes should cost only around $450,000, said Gold.

John Pescatore, an analyst at Gartner, said of the ConSentry system, “A viable option for implementing a form of network access control is to have an in-line device that piggy-backs switches or routers on your network.”


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