The changing face of endpoint security

So if you are in corporate IT, you know you have a large portion of mobile and roaming end users carrying laptops around the world. You know their potential for infection is huge, and what's more, you know you have to invest in technology to secure your end-points and keep your local networks from being hammered from zero-day attacks.

But all this knowledge is a dangerous thing. While Microsoft, Cisco, and numerous other companies have made plenty of promises that help is on the way, no single company has a best-of-breed endpoint solution. What's more, the architecture and marketing wars on this issue are just heating up, with no sign of stopping.

There are three major architectural efforts underway to define some sort of standards in endpoint security. The first is the Trusted Computing Group's Trusted Network Connect (TNC), composed of dozens of industry heavies around a bushel full of open standards. Next is Cisco's Network Admission Control or NAC. Finally, and the least developed of the trio, is Microsoft's Network Access Protection or NAP. NAP is yet to be implemented in any product, and is full of promise for Vista and Longhorn Server, the next versions of Windows.

At Interop last month, I saw signs that endpoint security is the latest rave, with promises everywhere that one vendor’s product will solve all your problems.

You can read more about my thoughts in an article I wrote for Information Security magazine on the topic entitled, "Which Way?"  (registration required)

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