SOURCE: AEP Networks

May 22, 2007 08:00 ET

AEP Networks Announces the First Geographical Load Balancing SSL VPN

NSP Release 5.6 Extends AEP's Secure Remote Access to Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Planning for Mid- to Large-Scale Environments

SOMERSET, NJ -- (MARKET WIRE) -- May 22, 2007 -- AEP Networks, the leader in policy-based networking, announces the AEP Netilla Security Platform (NSP) Release 5.6 -- the industry's first and only SSL VPN to include integrated load balancing to provide geographical site failover for business continuity.

Business continuity and disaster recovery planning has become a major area of interest because of the impact of recent disasters -- both small-scale and large. Remote access to company applications via SSL VPN can help companies be more resilient after catastrophic events and is a viable component to a comprehensive disaster recovery plan.

Geographical Diversity Configuration:

In the NSP Release 5.6 the standard load-balancing configurations now enable geographical load balancing, providing load sharing and failover between independent NSP clusters in geographically diverse data centers. It is configurable by the enterprise as active-active for organizations self-insuring against a failure in their owned data centers or as active-passive for customers using a standby/backup disaster recovery facility service, such as those provided by IBM or Sungard.

This is a global, high-availability load balancing solution, for large-scale, multi-site deployments, supporting up to thousands of concurrent users. With this highly scalable solution, AEP Networks is targeting mid-tier and larger enterprises for remote access and application security on a global basis as part of their business continuity planning.

SSL VPN provides universal application reach. Users are always redirected to the fastest responding appliance and site regardless of geographic location, resulting in fast, uninterrupted and secure application access for users.

--  Global, high-availability SSL VPN architecture with a cluster of NSP
    appliances and global load balancing technology
--  Always-on access and availability to critical applications
--  Integrated application security with granular access controls
    
Disaster Recovery Demand License:

NSP Release 5.6 also includes the Disaster Recovery Demand Licenses (DRDL) which is a new service offering for customers that wish to increase license capacity of their installation on short notice (within minutes or hours). This capability may, for example, be desired if there is a local emergency or severe weather condition that causes a short-term peak demand for additional remote access usage beyond the norm.

The DRDL may be configured on any NSP installation. The customer determines the peak licensing capacity required and installs an NSP hardware configuration capable of supporting that peak level of demand. A fee representing a fraction of the standard licensing cost is charged for enrollment. At the occurrence of a peak demand for service, the extra capacity is enabled and a pre-determined, monthly service fee is invoiced.

This license allows a temporary increase in the number of remote access users for additional flexibility during peak-usage periods. The DRDL solution provides a cost effective and scalable approach for balancing the risk of a disaster.

"This new release of NSP contains enterprise standard features that work very well for mid-tier and larger customers," said Reginald P. Best, COO of AEP Networks. "It is a solution for secure remote access ensuring business continuity in the event of a disaster."

NSP 5.6 also includes significant changes made to support native Windows Vista User Account Control (UAC) security -- the default Vista mode -- and Internet Explorer 7.0. All of the NSP services, including web, port-forwarding, tunneling and thin-proxy services, are now compatible with Vista.

Pricing and Availability

NSP 5.6 is currently in beta testing, and will be generally available via AEP Business Partners in early July.

NSP Geographical Load-Balancing is available for use on all NSP product versions from entry-level through high-end. A typical NSP Global Load Balancing configuration with two geographically diverse NSP (x2) clusters each supporting 100 concurrent users (200 concurrent users total) is available through AEP's channel partners for about $50,000 US list price which includes all hardware appliances and software licensing.

For DRDL situations, customers pay 30% of license cost for activation, and 5% of license cost per month once peak licensing is activated (minimum one month increments).

About AEP Networks

AEP Networks offers a comprehensive Policy Networking solution that provides complete security starting at the endpoints and working throughout a network -- from the edge to the core. AEP's integrated portfolio of security products includes network admission control enforcement points, identity-based application security gateways, SSL VPNs, high assurance IPSec-based VPN encryptors, and hardware security modules for key management. Our products address the most demanding security requirements of public-sector organizations and commercial enterprises internationally. The company is headquartered in Somerset, New Jersey, with offices worldwide.

AEP Networks, the AEP Networks logo, and NACpoint are trademarks of AEP Networks, Inc., with registration pending in the United States. Netilla, SmartGate, SmartPass and SmartAdmin are registered trademarks of AEP Networks, Inc. All other trademarks or registered trademarks contained herein are the property of their respective owners.

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