Check Point adds wireless partners to OPSEC

Check Point Software Technologies has certified a handful of new wireless networking products as complying with its Open Platform...

Check Point Software Technologies has certified a handful of new wireless networking products as complying with its Open Platform for Security (OPSEC) standard, which will enable those devices to be managed from within Check Point's Security console.

Wireless access points and cards from Intel, Proxim and Nokia, as well as wireless devices from Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Microsoft and Nokia are now supported under OPSEC, Check Point said.

The OPSEC program allows companies to write their applications to interoperate with Check Point's VPN-1/Firewall-1 security software and the company's management console, therefore allowing administrators to manage both Check Point and OPSEC-compliant software centrally, as well as to create rules for the interaction of Check Point and third-party software. Vendors must pay a fee to Check Point to be certified as OPSEC-compliant.

Check Point chose to add wireless networking support to OPSEC because "the use [of wireless LANs] is exploding", according to Sean Leonard, OPSEC alliance manager at Check Point.

"People are bringing this technology in [to the office] from home," he said.

Wireless networking can be a serious security vulnerability for enterprises, as the security features built into wireless protocols are not always strong enough for corporate use, he said.

Despite wireless still being a relatively new technology to most businesses, there is "already customer demand for this", Leonard said.

As such, HP's iPaq handheld, handhelds running Microsoft's Pocket PC 2002 and Smartphones 2002, and IBM ThinkPad laptops with built-in 802.11b wireless all now support Check Point's VPN-1 SecureClient and VPN-1 SecuRemote clients, Leonard said.

WAP support, in the form of the Nokia 9200 Communicator series will arrive by the end of the year, he added.

Check Point will add another component to a wireless security strategy, the ability to detect unauthorised or rogue, wireless access points through further OPSEC certifications within 30 days, Leonard said.

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