News Briefs

Absolute Software, a Vancouver-based provider of services and software for computer security and asset management, in February launched a new security product to address data security risks associated with remote, mobile and desktop computers. AbsoluteEncrypt is a centrally managed desktop security solution designed to encrypt sensitive information on employees’ desktops and prevent unauthorized access to private files. AbsoluteEncrypt is said to enable organizations to proactively enforce data security policies while enhancing user productivity and avoiding extensive setup and ongoing administrative costs. The initial version will be delivered as a software service over the Internet and is powered by Absolute’s Computrace Technology Platform. Absolute reports that an enterprise software version of AbsoluteEncrypt is expected to be available in the second quarter of 2003 for customers who prefer to manage their security needs within their intranets. Absolute has also announced Absolute Console, a new browser-based interface that is used to centrally configure, deploy and manage Absolute’s current and future products.

Sun uses biometrics for secure log-on

Sun Microsystems Inc. has released in the U.S. a high-security log-on offering, combining biometrics and Smart Card technologies. The Santa Clara, Calif.-based company, along with AC Technology Inc., a developer of biometric access control products, and Cross Match Technologies, a forensic-quality fingerprint and palm-print authentication solution maker, said the new solution is designed to prevent identity theft, fraud and cyber terrorism, and is based on Sun’s Solaris Operating system. According to Sun, the solution is among the first in a Unix environment to feature biometric security for Sun’s Smart Card “hot desk,” or virtual desktop architecture, which is available on the Sun Ray system. Combined with AC’s BiObex application and Cross Match’s Verifier E biometric access control device the Sun Ray offers enhanced security ensuring control of access to data from the network. Through the Smart Card technology, the solution creates a virtual desktop that allows users to activate a secure session from anywhere on the network. The offering has been tailored for use in markets including financial services and health care verticals. Sun Microsystems Canada has not specified a Canadian release date. The company is currently working with Canadian biometric developers to ensure the solution adheres to Canadian justice standards. – Carly Suppa

Legato seeks buyer; Veritas to grow

Storage software and backup vendor Legato Systems Inc. has put itself up for sale, according to a report by Reuters in early February. Possible suitors are a panoply of storage vendors, including Veritas Software Corp., EMC Corp., Sun Microsystems Inc., IBM Corp., Hewlett-Packard Co., Computer Associates International Inc. and Oracle Corp. In 2002, Legato acquired OTG Software, a vendor of archiving software used by corporations to track and archive documents required by a variety of government and financial regulations. Legato also sells NetWorkers and RepliStor, software that transfers data to remote sites to protect it from manmade or natural disaster. Meanwhile, Veritas, the second-largest vendor of storage management software, is planning to expand into other IT management technologies so it can better compete against more diversified rivals such as EMC Corp., Computer Associates International Inc. and IBM Corp. Veritas officials in February said a series of recent acquisitions is part of a strategy to offer IT administrators a utility model that offers a bundled suite of products that can manage across storage, servers and applications. – Deni Connor, Network World Fusion (U.S.) and Lucas Mearian, Computerworld (U.S.)