Feeds

iPass to offer Net access via non-affiliated hotspots

IT dept-mandated security no matter where you connect

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The essential guide to IT transformation

Remote access services provider iPass today opened its client-side connectivity software to allow users to reach the Internet via wireless and fixed networks that the company has not yet aggregated.

According to iPass, the move comes at the request of the company's corporate customers who want to allow their employees to connect to enterprise networks from the increasing number of free Wi-Fi hotspots and those that are not iPass partners. There's still an advantage to using an 'official' access point: there's no extra charge for connectivity, as there might be with a third-party hotspot.

Almost a year ago, iPass extended its remote access service to incorporate higher levels of security. Rather than simply providing connectivity to the Internet and, by VPN, access to corporate LANs, iPass allowed iPass Connect to operate as an extension of customers' own security policy maintenance systems. The application will grab and install IT department-sanction operating system patches, and ensure firewall, anti-virus and VPN software is up to date.

The updated version of iPass Connect continues to offer that functionality, but now will work even whatever hotspots the user connects through, including home networks. That, the company said, will allow corporate IT departments to sanction the use of home PCs safe in the knowledge that they can define and implement a suitable level of security provision even if the user fails to.

More likely, corporates will use the new system on company-owned notebooks. iPass Connect by-passes Windows' built-in Wi-Fi connectivity software, or third-party tools such as Intel's ProSet, which the chip-maker bundles with Centrino-branded notebooks. The software uses digital fingerprinting technology acquired last December when iPass bought Safe3W to ensure the connecting computer is the machine it claims to be. It's this that allows it to operate through 'unauthorised' hotspots. The code co-operates with whatever security provisions have been put in place on the access point, be it WEP or WPA.

iPass currently offers Windows, Mac OS X and PocketPC versions of iPass Connect. Only the Windows version supports the new authentication system, but the company pledged to upgrade the other versions in due course. A Linux release is in the pipeline, but it's unlikely to provide the new functionality from launch. ®

Related stories

iPass aggregates BT Openzone hotspots
iPass to link phones, PDAs to corporate LANs
iPass extends Wi-Fi coverage to stratosphere
iPass touts network access policy devolution
Report raps Wi-Fi providers for 'location inflation'

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
Time Warner Cable customers SQUEAL as US network goes offline
A rude awakening: North Americans greeted with outage drama
We need less U.S. in our WWW – Euro digital chief Steelie Neelie
EC moves to shift status quo at Internet Governance Forum
Google has spaffed more cash on lobbying this year than Big Cable
Don't worry, it'll be cheaper when they use drones
EE fails to apologise for HUGE T-Mobile outage that hit Brits on Friday
Customer: 'Please change your name to occasionally somewhere'
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?