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Cisco secures network access

Cisco Systems' push into the enterprise security market continues with the launch of two new security access servers.

Cisco Systems' (CSCO) push into the enterprise security market continues.

More than a month after garnering impressive support for a new security initiative, the San Jose, California-based networking monolith announced two new network security access servers for the Unix and Microsoft Windows NT markets.

The Cisco Secure EasyACS (access control server) 1.0 for Windows NT will debut next month with all Cisco Systems' dial-in access servers. The tool lets administrators set up user authentication policies and is targeted at remote offices that do not have experienced security personnel on staff.

The CiscoSecure ACS 2.0 for Unix product includes new enhancements such as token card authentications, a Web-based user interface written in Java, and support for relational databases from Oracle and Sybase. The product is integrated with Cisco's Internetworking Operating System (IOS), a set of software services that allow administrators to set up network security policies, among other features.

Both products will support the Remote Authentication Dial-In User Service (RADIUS), a popular security protocol in the remote access server space. The CiscoSecure ACS 2.0 for Unix is available immediately for $3,000.

In late February, Cisco Systems was joined by industry heavyweights Microsoft and Hewlett-Packard to address security issues. The resulting consortium is called the Cisco Enterprise Security Alliance.