Blue Coat Intros Authentication

Blue Coat introduces extended user authentication for WAN optimization and Secure Web Gateway

November 20, 2007

2 Min Read
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SUNNYVALE, Calif. -- Blue Coat Systems, Inc. (Nasdaq: BCSI), a leader in WAN Application Delivery and Secure Web Gateway, today announced new enhancements to its Blue Coat ProxySG® appliances that expand the options and flexibility for support of enterprise authentication processes that verify a network user's identity. Verified identity is essential to grant or limit access to certain applications, determine network priority and bandwidth, assign group membership or apply other permissions or controls. Blue Coat ProxySG appliances are the only WAN optimization solution to offer integrated authentication. In addition, the new enhancements to ProxySG extend its lead in providing the most extensive and flexible authentication options for Secure Web Gateway deployments that combine Web security, policy control and acceleration.

Authentication is Essential

Authentication is critical for WAN optimization, because it enables acceleration or prioritization of traffic to be performed based on the individual or the group to which the individual belongs, as well as the type of application the individual is using. Different individuals or groups will have different privileges and levels of access. A salesperson in a branch office, for instance, may have a higher priority than a staff marketing employee in accessing the company's centralized Customer Relationship Management (CRM) application over the WAN. Similarly, authentication is essential to Secure Web Gateway solutions in order to apply security and control policies with granularity based on specific users.

While authentication is important to WAN optimization and Secure Web Gateway deployments, it is difficult to provide because of the management required and the need to support a wide variety of authentication mechanisms. Extended authentication from Blue Coat addresses both authentication management and methods of authenticating. The new features are incorporated in the latest release of operating system software for Blue Coat ProxySG appliances, SGOS 5.2. The features include:

Management for Extended AuthenticationPermit Authentication Error - a feature that enables administrators to permit users full or partial access to network resources, even if they have not been successfully authenticated (perhaps because of invalid or out-of-date credentials). This feature can provide someone having login difficulty the ability to communicate with a help desk or other areas deemed appropriate by the company.

Guest Authentication - a feature that enables administrators to permit users to access the network on a limited basis as a guest and assign various authentication and authorization attributes, including the ability to track user Internet activity.

User Management - a set of features that provides administrators granular control over users logged into the network, such as the ability to view all active users, and the ability to limit the number of logins for a particular computer or IP address or the number of IP addresses that can be allowed per user. In addition, the administrator can provide a logout URL for users to manually logout, set limits for login times and require re-authentication after a certain length of time.

Blue Coat Systems Inc.

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