Forum Systems Integrates XML Gateway, Web Application Firewall On Single Appliance

Forum Systems has announced a unified Web application firewall (WAF) and XML gateway on a single platform, combining identity management and authentication, threat detection and blocking, malware filtering and XML processing for complex, high-volume Web transaction environments, such as financial services.

April 19, 2011

2 Min Read
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Forum Systems has announced a unified Web application firewall (WAF) and XML gateway on a single platform, combining identity management and authentication, threat detection and blocking, malware filtering and XML processing for complex, high-volume Web transaction environments, such as financial services.

The Forum Sentry WAF Gateway integrates the functionality of Forum's WAF XML gateway on one appliance, optimized to handle the resource-intensive combination of processes, including encryption/decryption, without degrading performance of latency-sensitive transactions.

Prior to the new release, enterprises would have to split traffic received through their application delivery controller load-balancing systems (from providers such as Citrix Systems, Cisco Systems, F5 Networks and Radware ) into HTML and XML/SOAP for security filtering and identity controls before passing it to the appropriate application servers.

Synovus Financial, a Columbus, Ga.-based financial services company, uses Forum Sentry WAF in front of its Web services to provide XML authentication. The company was looking for a way to provide dynamic, flexible Web services so that authentication could be applied by vendor, based on how they came in, as well as to assign controls and deliver services segregated by vendors and their requirements.

"We looked at their authentication platform and how easy it was," says Santosh Kokate, lead technical analyst at Synovus. "As we learned more, we added power to our architecture by virtualizing Web services, processing traffic, providing HTTP filtering and pattern-matching for threats like SQL injection. Our whole SOA architecture has become robust.""Our customers wanted us to put our gateway technology in front of classic HTML because they were getting crushed with traffic identity decisions, such as rich Internet applications (RIAs) using JSON, REST, AJAX, combined HTML and XML traffic," says Mamoon Yunus, president of Crosscheck Networks, Forum's parent company. "Looking at all the requirements interacting from a B2B or portal-to-application perspective, identity becomes a heavier part of securing applications."

In these kinds of complex Web services environments, Yunus says, WAF must support a full range of identity management options for authentication (including SAML, forms, cookies, WS-Tokens and X.509), identity stores and message tokens. Forum Sentry also provides broad protocol support, including HTTP, JMS, FTP, MQ Series, Tibco EMS, HTML, XML, SOAP, MTOM and SwA.

In addition to screening traffic for Web attacks, such as cross-site scripting and SQL injections, Forum Sentry WAF provides anti-virus filtering via RegEx and open-source Clamshell AV. An API allows enterprises to use commercial anti-malware products of their choice. The appliance also provides RegEx-based DLP for basic filtering for sensitive personal data such as credit card numbers and Social Security numbers, or custom searches based on corporate policy.

The platform allows unified policy assignment and a common log set for audit review and analysis. The appliances start at $64,000 or $20,000 for software only.

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