AirMagnet Achieves Three Industry ‘Firsts’ in Wireless Security and Performance Monitoring

By | February 27, 2006

AirMagnet Inc., the leader in wireless LAN (WLAN) security and performance solutions, announced version 7.0 of its flagship Enterprise product, which earlier this month was named one of Information Security´s Products of the Year, and two weeks ago was named Best Wireless Security Solution and Best Overall Network Security Solution of 2005 by SC Magazine.

The new AirMagnet Enterprise is the world´s first WLAN monitoring system to integrate three increasingly vital components to intrusion protection and performance monitoring: security and monitoring for outdoor wireless networks, analysis of radio frequency (RF) spectrum issues and remote data-sharing capabilities for dynamic in-field analysis and monitoring.

“As wireless LANs continue to progress towards ubiquity in enterprise and public-access settings, tools like AirMagnet Enterprise become essential,” said Craig Mathias, a Principal with the wireless and mobile advisory firm Farpoint Group in Ashland, Mass. “AirMagnet is to be congratulated on integrating all of the functions required to maintain peak operational capability in large-scale deployments. I´m especially fond of their combining detailed Wi-Fi information and control with spectral analysis, a must as wireless becomes the LAN of choice for so many users and applications.”

Roughly 100 municipal Wi-Fi networks are already being built, and research firm Yankee Group estimates that 300 U.S. cities and towns will eventually build their own wireless networks. The growth of municipal Wi-Fi creates a need for a way to secure and monitor specifically designed to ensure secure and reliable networks can be set up outdoors. With “ruggedized” sensors built for outdoor use, location-based alarming to set specific policies for outdoor devices, and tools like alarm consolidation to simplify the process of managing these new networks by reducing the number of alarms generated by a single problem and allowing a more targeted and rapid response, AirMagnet Enterprise 7.0 enables secure, manageable outdoor wireless networking.

As wireless networks spread outdoors, new performance inhibitors arise, such as the increasing amount of RF interference caused by non-Wi-Fi devices. “The dramatic increase in non-802.11 interference from cordless phones, microwaves, webcams and other devices is probably the biggest challenge that Wi-Fi faces today, and AirMagnet Enterprise 7.0 is the best solution to that problem,” said Ron Shaul, president of Smart City Networks, a builder of conference and trade show networks and one of the first customers of AirMagnet Enterprise 7.0. “Many organizations are using wireless networks today as a replacement for wired networks, and the expectation is that WLANs should be available 100 percent of the time. AirMagnet Enterprise makes it possible to make a wireless network behave like a wired network–version 7.0 is a significant improvement to what was already the best product in its category.”

AirMagnet Enterprise 7.0 adds a range of new features that make wireless LANs far easier to monitor for security, performance and compliance issues. New features in version 7.0 include:

— Mobile Site Analysis integrates AirMagnet Enterprise 7.0 with the company´s popular mobile tool, Laptop Analyzer, enabling any laptop to turn into a temporary sensor for real-time local troubleshooting and live data capture in the field. Field technicians no longer have to manually configure a separate tool for in-field policy- and rules-based monitoring–they can easily download the information from AirMagnet Enterprise, enabling them to perform dynamic on-site troubleshooting.

— Spectrum Sensor is the industry´s first enterprise monitoring platform to integrate wireless LAN and RF spectrum analysis in a single device, allowing users to recognize RF interferences as the source of performance problems and identify the specific sources of interference. Spectrum analysis is available on AirMagnet´s new second generation of standard SmartEdge sensors as well as its new “ruggedized” sensors–waterproof, temperature-tolerant, PoE-powered sensors designed for outdoor use.

— Location-Based Alarming enables users to define perimeters for indoor and outdoor locations and create unique alarms and location-based recommendations for indoor security and performance problems.

— Enhanced Location Detection allows users to view detected rogue devices by location, as well as generate device alarms by location, alerting users when rogue devices are found in an area designated as secure.

— Alarm Correlation simplifies how alarms are presented by determining the root cause of device or channel problems. As enterprise wireless networks evolve into hybrid indoor/outdoor networks that cover large corporate campuses, and massive mesh networks spread across entire cities, event correlation can simplify the process of managing these new networks by pinpointing the specific device or devices that are the root-cause of network problems.

AirMagnet Enterprise also adds a new compliance report that addresses the Federal Information Security Management Act (FISMA), which was created to secure federal information and assets. Since the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) assesses federal agencies´ compliance yearly, non-compliance can result in fines and budget cuts. AirMagnet Enterprise´s FISMA compliance tools enable agencies to document and prove compliance for their yearly reviews and avoid strict financial penalties.

“In just a few short years, wireless LANs have grown from ad hoc access points hidden under desks to sophisticated networks connecting large corporate campuses, or meshes bringing wireless Internet and e-mail to entire cities,” said Dean Au, president and CEO of AirMagnet. “As networks have grown, so has the difficulty of securing and maintaining them. This new edition of AirMagnet Enterprise integrates our entire product family to secure and monitor more types of networks, secure compliance with more regulations and identify more security and performance issues than any alternative.”

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