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[infowar.de] US Army kauft Sicherheit für WLANs
Zwei Projekte, zwei verschiedene Beschaffungskonstruktionen:
- Das Combat Service Support Automated Information System Interface
(CAISI) wird von Fortress Technologies gesichert, der Auftrag kommt
direkt von der Army.
- Das Program Manager, Warfighter Information Network-Tactical (PM,
WIN-T) bekommt eine Lösung von General Dynamics Decision Systems. Der
Auftrag kommt hier vom WIN-T-Lieferanten Northrop-Grumman.
Army securing wireless LAN
By Dan Caterinicchia
March 12, 2002
The Army this week announced that it has selected a security solution to
protect the mission-critical business systems of the Combat Service
Support Automated Information System Interface (CAISI) project, a
wireless local-area network with about 85,000 users.
The Army has awarded Fortress Technologies a three-year
"multimillion-dollar" contract for its AirFortress wireless security
suite, said Janet Kumpu, chief operating officer of the firm.
"CAISI is a multiyear, wireless LAN program that will provide 'last
mile' connectivity between the combat service support computers on the
tactical battlefield and the wireless LAN that the Army provides," said
Peter Johnson, chief information officer in the Army's Program Executive
Office for Enterprise Information Systems (PEO EIS).
PEO EIS, which provides IT acquisition, implementation and training for
the Army, evaluated several security solutions based on criteria that
included level of security, ease of use, network performance, mobility
and total cost of ownership.
CAISI will most benefit areas that lack Internet or LAN connectivity --
such as motor pools and supply rooms -- by "giving them that level of
connectivity," Johnson said. "The real value is in the computers we're
The AirFortress system will enable CAISI to provide secure wireless
connectivity to support information technology for supply chain
management, maintenance and other Army business systems, Johnson said,
adding that deployment will begin within 60 days.
The AirFortress suite, designed for networks based on the 802.11b
standard, has three components:
* Wireless Security Gateways - appliances that enforce network access
rights and encrypt and decrypt communication across a wireless LAN.
* Secure Client - a software client that encrypts and decrypts
communication across wireless LANs and protects wireless devices
* Access Control Server - a software application database that
monitors and manages the authentication and access control of
Defense Department policy prohibits agencies from operating wireless
LANs without certified strong security, so "without our solution, they
couldn't deploy the [CAISI] program," Kumpu said. "They haven't been
able to use wirele ss at all [and] had to go back to wired
[communications] until they solved the security issues." The company
already has shipped the first units to the Army for staging and testing,
and an initial field launch is scheduled for next month. The original
agreement called for 6,000 of the Wireless Security Gateways, deploying
2,000 units per year for three years, but the Army may accelerate that,
The Army formally selected the AirFortress solution in January, said
John Dow, Fortress' vice president of marketing and corporate
development. He said the technology can be integrated into the Army's
already-designed wireless LAN infrastructure within an hour, but because
multiple modules and rollouts have to meet the service's "diligent"
staging and testing processes, full deployment will take
about one month.
In related news, Northrop Grumman Information Technology has awarded
General Dynamics Decision Systems a contract to provide the Army Program
Manager, Warfighter Information Network-Tactical (PM, WIN-T) with
wireless secure LAN capabilities.
The program includes options that would bring the total value to $83.4
million, with General Dynamics' portion valued at $64.9 million,
according to the company. Of the total initial award, valued at $8.9
million, General Dynamics' portion is $4 million.
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