Nortel Secure Network Access

Solution Brief
Nortel Secure Network Access
Reducing risk through endpoint security
Failing to secure the endpoint computing devices in your network costs the
corporate enterprise in excess of $50
million1 per year. During the first six
months of 2004, 4,4962 new viruses
and worms were discovered, causing
millions of damage to systems and lost
productivity costs for the enterprise.
Organizations are continually bombarded
with new viruses, worms and vulnerabilities in the technologies employed in
business systems. The malicious software
trend is expected to get worse, not better,
over the foreseeable future. Failing to
keep systems patched and current vulnerabilities managed increases the opportunities for successful attacks. Despite the
plethora of patch management solutions, research suggests many organizations are still not current with vendor
recommended patches. The sheer volume
of devices to manage exacerbates the
problem, including asset management
and deciding which devices are corporate
assets, which belong to non-employees
such as contractors and ensuring all
devices comply with the enterprise’s
security standards.
Read about the Nortel Layered Defense in the paper
entitled Layered Defense approach to network security, document number NN108120.
Symantec Internet Security Threat Report, Sept. 2004
These factors increase the risk exposure
footprint for the enterprise. Consequently,
organizations must utilize a layered
defense approach to network security
to combat these increasing threats. A
layered defense posture provides more
than one layer of protection from any
given attack method, thereby increasing
the enterprise’s control and mitigation
capabilities. The mitigation and control
of these issues is within our grasp and
applicable to every enterprise, regardless
of business focus or size.
A key element described in the Nortel
Layered Defense 1 posture is endpoint
security, starting with the computing
devices used by the user community.
Spending time securing these devices
is integral to the defensive posture as
most enterprises have far more users
than servers. Critical to managing these
systems are security policies specifying
the precise configurations required by
the enterprise for holistic management
and control. Security policies require
specific components including antivirus software, up-to-date definitions,
personal firewall software and the
unique configurations for the enterprise
such as disallowing certain network
applications on the device.
Controlling what devices are permitted
to connect to the network provides
significant protection. Does an enterprise really know what is connected to
their network? Enterprise-provided
systems, employees’ personal devices,
contractors, consultants and vendor
support personnel all have devices which
may be connected at any given time.
Solutions like port authentication as
provided by IEEE standard 802.1x
provide the ability for the enterprise to
allow only authorized systems network
connectivity. Limiting network access to
only authorized systems is essential;
however, even authorized systems can
become infected with a virus.
systems from connecting to your network,
infecting other systems or stealing your
organization’s information assets.
Nortel’s answer
Nortel understands security means
understanding networks. We are the
leading vendor with strategies for traditional and emerging voice technologies.
Nortel’s comprehensive security strategy
results in high-performance security
products built on a culture of reliability
and best-of-breed partnerships. Nortel's
standards-based solutions provide lower
integration challenges and increased
interoperability with other network
Automated enforcement of configuration and security policies complete the
defensive posture. Using solutions to
evaluate the configuration of the
authorized system increases control
and risk mitigation level. If the system
meets the criteria established in the
security policy, it is authorized and
connected to the network. Any system
failing to meet the policy can be
directed to the appropriate systems
where patches, required software and
configurations can be made.
Nortel understands the need for cohesive management of endpoint configuration and provides solutions addressing
these industry concerns. To that end,
Nortel offers the Secure Network
Access Solution (NSNA). Providing
information gathering and response
capability into the network is essential.
Being able to determine the configuration of the endpoint and allowing or
Adding these components to your
layered defense posture increases your
control, reduces the risk of unauthorized or authorized but uncompliant
denying access can decrease your
exposure to malicious activity.
Nortel Ethernet and Ethernet Routing
Switches (formerly known as BayStack*
and Passport*) are IEEE 802.1x
enabled, providing the capability to
enforce 802.1x authentication on
devices supporting it. Other methods
are available for restricting access to
authorized systems, including MAC
address filtering. These services prevent
unauthorized devices from connecting
to the network, which can limit exposure to viruses, worms, malicious
attacks, sniffers and rogue wireless
access points. IT administrators can't
always keep their remote users free of
viruses, but they can keep them from
infecting the network. With NSNA,
featuring our Tunnel Guard technology,
enterprises can reap the economic benefits of virtual private networking with
much lower levels of security exposure.
Nortel was the first VPN provider
offering this technology for remote
users. Nortel Secure Network Access
supports both IPSec and SSL VPN
using a client for IPSec and clientless
Figure 1. Nortel Secure Network Access — VPN endpoint protection
VPN Gateway sends
message to AAA server
User initiates VPN
connection and presents
client credentials
(certificates, tokens,
userid/password, etc.)
VPN Gateway
VPN Gateway sends a
security agent to scan
the client device for
security posture (antivirus signature, FW, etc.)
Data center
Local clients
If client fails to meet
security policy, then the
client is quarantined and
redirected to multilayered remediation site
The IEEE 802.1x protocol is the standard providing access control services for both wired and wireless LANs. The protocol
defines a method of authenticating and authorizing a device to connect to a given LAN based upon the Extensible
Authentication Protocol (EAP). When a device connects to an 802.1x-protected network, the network requests the device
authenticate and if successful connects the device to the network. Port level authentication blocks unauthorized computers
from connecting to the network, prevents access from non-secured areas and is useful for preventing network-level attacks
against critical network resources.
operation for SSL VPNs. Nortel Secure
Network Access enables the administrator to define endpoint security policy
on the VPN Gateway itself and ensures
all users or devices connecting to the
VPN Gateway are inspected for compliance to the policy. Users can be denied
access or have access restricted based on
compliance status.
Through Nortel’s established relationships with leading security vendors like
Sygate Technologies, our 802.1x-enabled
switch products provide full control over
the configuration requirements for every
authorized system. The Sygate Secure
Enterprise solution provides a personal
firewall and agent-based technologies to
ensure the system is compliant with the
organization’s security requirements. All
elements of the system can be evaluated
including the operating system, patches,
anti-virus software, personal firewall
status, registry settings and other system
configuration components. Verifying
compliance and blocking connections
from non-compliant systems can guarantee 100 percent compliance with
corporate policy 100 percent of the time.
The network edge is no longer where
the corporate firewalls are. A paradigm
shift over the last few years has pushed
the network edge to where the user and
their computing device are located. The
road warrior establishing a connection
to the corporate network from their
hotel, the support engineer providing
support to a customer or the sales
representative demonstrating your latest
product can have secure remote access
to your network. Likewise, organizations are extending their firewall installations to include locations within the
corporate network to increase protection for critical computing resources
such as data centers and mission-critical
applications. The versatile Nortel Ethernet
Routing Switch platform provides highspeed switching and routing services
over a wide range of network interfaces.
Adding the Service Delivery Module to
the Ethernet Routing Switch extends
enterprise firewall protection to the data
center, enabling a higher level of protection for the mission-critical systems and
Nortel provides secure access to your
network using IPSec and SSL VPN
technologies with the Nortel VPN
Gateway and Nortel Application Switch
(formerly known as Alteon* Application
Switch) portfolios. Nortel has the
product flexibility providing both IPSec
and SSL VPN solutions to meet your
connectivity needs. Regardless of where
your employees are, Nortel VPN Router
(formerly known as Contivity*) and
VPN Gateway provide full, secured
access to the resources and services they
need including mobility services such
as Voice over IP. Available on Nortel’s
VPN Gateway portfolio and Nortel
VPN Router platforms, Nortel Secure
Network Access helps to prevent the
end-user PC from becoming a vehicle for
viruses or other unwanted intrusions into
the secure enterprise network through
the VPN tunnel. When combined with
Sygate Secure Enterprise, every system
in your organization can be compliant
with your security policy regardless of
where they are and how they connect.
Nortel provides your next-generation
network, capable of withstanding today’s
malicious software attacks. Nortel’s
solutions provide your network with
the ability to deal with tomorrow’s
attacks by anticipating attacks before
they occur. Full connectivity strategies,
service delivery and network control
provide your organization the capability
of providing whatever level of access
you need.
For Nortel, success is delivering technologies providing secure access to your
information using security-compliant
systems regardless of where you are and
how you access the network. Your success
is measured by increased employee
productivity and lower network operations costs. Nortel’s award-winning
solutions provide your organization
with the network intelligence required
for success. That makes good business.
This is the way we reduce the
impact of viruses, worms and
other malicious software.
This is Nortel.
Viruses and worms are a major threat in today’s computing landscape. Computer viruses were first seen more than 20 years
ago and we can expect them and future variants to continue. Enterprise security managers understand the need for integrated
and cohesive solutions — point products no longer meet the need. Instead, they look for interoperability between their
network equipment and security software systems. Nortel allows the security and networking teams to leverage their existing
environment in combination with our significant security portfolio.
This is the Way. This is Nortel, Nortel, the Nortel logo, the Globemark, Alteon, BayStack,
Passport and Contivity are trademarks of Nortel Networks. All other trademarks are the
property of their owners.
Copyright © 2005 Nortel Networks. All rights reserved. Information in this document is
subject to change without notice. Nortel assumes no responsibility for any errors that
may appear in this document.
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