Wave Systems Corp. (NASDAQ: WAVX) is delivering secured, verified access to networks leveraging Microsoft DirectAccess by protecting credentials in hardware. This functionality allows organizations running Windows 7 (and soon Windows 8) to enable Microsoft's DirectAccess in place of a conventional virtual private network -- and to do so without fear of credential theft. DirectAccess eliminates the need for users to input their name and password to connect to the network -- so it becomes much harder to steal them.
Microsoft is making modern access control one of the key pillars in its soon-to-be-released Windows 8 operating system, with provisions that allow for machine and user ID hardware-protected certificates for user authentication for remote access and strong machine network authentication.
But enterprises don't have to wait for Windows 8 deployment -- Wave is delivering modern access control today on Windows 7 as well, playing a central role in providing a better user experience and authenticated access to networks that identify devices issued by the organization.
"DirectAccess and securing credentials within the TPM lay the groundwork for a new enterprise security model based on device identity," said Wave CEO Steven Sprague. "One of the biggest advantages from a security standpoint is that the user can only access the network from a device authorized by the company, because now IT can control which machines are allowed network access."
Corporate security that makes device ID the cornerstone of its policy puts the responsibility for security out of the hands of the user and into the hands of the enterprise.
"The user has no knowledge of device authentication credentials, and that effectively eliminates the problem of phishing or social engineering hacks that trick the user into inputting access information," Mr. Sprague continued. "With Wave, customers have the full support for machines running Windows 7, and soon Windows 8, to modernize their network architecture to one based on device identity."
Through the use of Wave's ERAS, IT can deploy domain credentials to the Trusted Platform Module (TPM), a security chip on the motherboard of most PCs. This step simplifies the deployment process, and adds security for the credential, as TPM-secured credentials are immune to many well-known attacks.
In addition to offering greater security for DirectAccess, ERAS help protect credentials for networks running Cisco or Juniper network remote access solutions.
The latest version of ERAS (2.9) is set for release later this quarter. ERAS 2.9 supports Windows 7 and will support Windows 8.