SOURCE: AEP Networks

August 03, 2009 08:00 ET

Newcastle City Council Upgrades to Virtual Remote Access System With AEP Netilla® VE

Benefits From Improved Compliance and Flexibility as New Systems Implemented Virtually Unnoticed by Users

SOMERSET, NJ and HEMEL HEMPSTEAD, UK--(Marketwire - August 3, 2009) - Newcastle City Council has successfully completed an upgrade project from a physical remote access system to a virtual environment. The project was scoped, specified, tested and implemented by AEP Networks' U.K. channel partner, Enforce Technology Limited, in just four weeks. It was implemented in response to the Government Connect Programme under which all local authorities must move their mail servers into their own networks. Key benefits of the new virtual environment include greater system flexibility and resilience, PCI compliance, lower cost and better manageability.

Andrew Price, ICT Technical Consultant for Newcastle City Council, commented, "We had been involved with Enforce and AEP Networks for several years when the need to change came about. We were keen to meet the compliance requirements set down by the Government and to gain some additional benefits through the project. With change comes the opportunity to review current systems and it was at this time that the virtual product (Netilla VE) was highlighted to us. It seemed to offer us a degree of flexibility and resilience that a physical product was unable to deliver. In fact, we are now able to cater for almost unlimited numbers of users because the virtual environment has inherent flexibility."

Although compliance was the main driver for the project, Newcastle CC has benefitted from several knock-on advantages. For example, with Netilla VE in place, the technology team is able to create test environments that are isolated from the live systems. This allows them to test scenarios before putting them into the live environment which is a distinct advantage when introducing new processes. Also, the virtual Netilla product delivers a much greater level of user flexibility and resilience than the physical set-up. In fact, it almost enables unlimited concurrent users.

Paul Spencer, senior vice president of Secure Application Access for AEP Networks, said, "Business continuity is a significant consideration for all local governments to manage disaster situations ranging from floods to viral epidemics. Having an effective, secure, flexible and resilient remote access system in place is a terrific way to cater for all eventualities. With the support of our partners we were able to deliver systems that can cater for customers' day to day needs most efficiently and protect them against any unforeseen situations."

John Calder of Enforce commented, "Implementing a virtual SSL VPN is relatively straightforward and can be done with little or no disruption to existing remote users. Increasing the level of access is also simple as everything is done in software. We do this by creating sub servers in the virtual environment to soak up all users as required. The capacity is there just in case it's needed, so customers can cater for a surge in users at any given point in time."

About AEP Networks

AEP Networks offers secure communications, networking and application access for government, enterprise and carriers. We work with systems integrators, managed service providers and the distribution channel to deliver integrated solutions incorporating our leading edge products:

--  Enhanced-grade secure voice and multi-service data platforms (based on
    the vadOS operating system) that support a wide range of communications
    protocols and network topologies
--  High assurance networking via IPsec-based VPN encryptors for site-to-
    site security and remote access
--  Hardware Security Modules (HSMs) for cryptographic key management and
    storage
--  Secure remote access to networks and applications -- including virtual
    environments -- via application-layer security gateways and SSL VPNs.
    

Headquartered in Somerset, New Jersey, AEP Networks has key hub offices in the United Kingdom, Malaysia and Australia. For more information, visit www.aepnetworks.com