These days, the last thing any business can afford to have compromised is security, and with Chrysalis’ release of the Luna XL Accelerator, security is the top priority.
It is a hardware-based product that uses a PCI card embedded in the server. The PCI card inserts into the server platform cabled into the XL platform that sits beside the server. Security is achieved through the SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) protocol, said Wendy Smith, the director of trusted transport for Chrysalis in Ottawa. With the SSL, “in the course of a handshake, we use the public key exchange mechanism where keys are exchanged between the client and the server, and that key exchange can co-operate over a public network because of different keys, which are used to exchange symmetric keys, which are used for the data transfer.”
Security is inherent in using the SSL also because of the use of key management, which is used above the cryptography, Smith said. “The keys are always maintained within the hardware (and) never exposed on the hard disk drive of the computer which means that they can never be copied or corrupted by viruses or destroyed because of the hardware secured SSL platform.”
Smith added the two major concerns the Accelerator is trying to address are security and performance. She said that because the SSL can be performed on a server directly, the result is to slow down the performance of the server by a factor of ten or more. The Accelerator, in some cases, can perform 600 transactions per second, without hindering security. Hence, the result, Smith said is the combination of high security and performance.
Analysts, to this point have praised the release, claiming it indeed addresses security concerns while not giving away to overall performance.
“The Luna XL are allowing the would-be deployer of that security system the groundwork to deploy a very secure system,” said Joey Roa, an e-business analyst in Calgary. An increase in information over the Internet has led to the use of this technology. “And when you deploy SSL, the performance to the system can be tenfold. You then needed to increase performance without compromising security, and that’s where the SSL Accelerator started to gain in popularity.” Roa added that while security does remain a concern for e-commerce, Chrysalis’ hardware security product are helping to fight the security problems.
Stephen Ibaraki called the technology evolutionary and said it is able to improve performance issues. “It’s very secure for traditional kinds of computing, and the Accelerator will speed up the security mechanism,” the chief architect for IGenKnowledge Solutions in Vancouver said.
Like Roa, Ibaraki agrees that security remains an issue within organizations today, but is confident that with improvements in speed due to new protocols and better infrastructure, security won’t be the issue it is today. “Security will be less of an issue in five years time because of the technologies that are evolving,” he said. He cited XP and Windows products that are emerging that would supersede some of the existing technologies that exist today.