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Rolling Review: Guardium SQL Guard


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Is it time to bite the compliance bullet and get a grip on what's going on within your database environment? Look no further than the SQL Guard 6.0 database extrusion prevention appliance. Guardium has thrown in practically every feature you'll need to lock down sensitive data—all that's missing is a caring, sympathetic auditor. What, you thought this was a miracle box?

This article is the fourth of a series and is part of NWC's Rolling Review of extrusion-prevention systems. Click on that link to go to the Rolling Reviews home page to read all the features and reviews now.

SQL Guard came to our University of Florida Real World Lab on a beefy Dell 1U server that can be deployed either inline or out-of-band. In either scenario, it acts as a true extrusion prevention system, dropping traffic when inline or sending TCP reset packets to the attacker and database server when out-of-band. We had no problems during testing with either placement option. Day-to-day management was a breeze thanks to a thorough, well-designed and attractive Web interface that shows off the maturity of the 6.0 release. As intuitive as we found the Web interface, the sheer num-ber of features available in each screen sometimes left us thumbing through the man-ual. Once you learn the ropes, this will be one formidable weapon against data theft.

SQL Guard supports Oracle 8i/9i/10G, Microsoft SQL Server 2000/2005, Sybase ASE/IQ, and IBM DB2 and Informix. The primary method of analyzing database ac-tivity is through monitoring network traffic to the database servers. This works great when your topology supports the addition of a network appliance. For environments where this is a problem, say due to layout or use of virtualization, where the applica-tion and database servers reside on the same physical server, Guardium joins Imperva and RippleTech in supporting database activity monitoring with its S-TAP software probe. S-TAP can monitor both network-sourced database activity and local console activity and supports HP-UX, Solaris, Linux, AIX, OSF1 and Windows OSes.

The Upshot

Participants in this Rolling Review must be capable of monitoring for, de-tecting, and when possible preventing data extrusion from database servers. Guar-dium's SQL Guard 6.0 has the capabilities to meet all our requirements.
Currently, native database logging capabilities cannot provide the in-depth analysis and auditing capabilities found in specialized DBEP products. Database extrusion prevention systems may monitor data returned by SQL queries, watch for anomalous behavior, or both.
SQL Guard performed at the top of the DBEP class, with task automation, data classification and reporting capabilities that stand out from other products we've tested. Its deployment options and wide database support should make it a fit for most enterprises.

Guardium SQL Guard

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