Novell has announced the availability of Novell Modular Authentication Service (NMAS) Enterprise Edition 1.0, advanced net security software for authenticating users to a network. Leveraging NDS eDirectory, NMAS Enterprise Edition provides a single point of administration and management for a broad range of authentication methods including tokens, smartcards, X.509 digital certificates, and fingerprint and iris scan devices. This makes it possible for customers to consolidate security services and increase network security beyond basic password authentication.
NMAS offers multifactor and 'graded authentication', which enable customers to combine authentication methods and set granular access policies to certain areas on a network, making NMAS ideal for e-commerce-based industries where regulations are driving the need for enhanced security measures, especially in healthcare, financial services, government, and pharmaceutical markets.
NMAS Enterprise Edition is also ideal for administrators managing users in NDS eDirectory that demand both flexibility and enhanced security across multiple applications and operating systems. The extensible NMAS framework supports a variety of authentication methods including something you know, such as a password, something you are, such as a fingerprint, or something you have, such as a token or smartcard.
"As businesses enlarge their corporate network to include customers and supply partners, the ability to secure access to network services, data, and information is critical," said Novell SA Manager James Thomas. Through the power of eDirectory, NMAS Enterprise Edition helps organisations meet compliance by giving them the flexibility to combine and manage authentication methods that best match their security needs."
NMAS is the first solution on the market today to support 'graded authentication' - a powerful proprietary security feature allowing administrators to establish network access based on authentication methods used in a sequence. For instance, a healthcare organisation can assign access to certain medical records with a specific login sequence (for example a fingerprint + an NDS password). Access is given only to those users that login using the assigned sequence, ensuring privacy and confidentiality. This also ensures the user is not able to copy or move files, which prevents secure information from being inadvertently moved to other areas on a network.
Novell announced the NMAS Starter Pack in January 2000. In a short time, more than 20 companies have plans to support NMAS including ActivCard, Applied Biometrics, Arcot Systems, Biometric Access, BioPassword and Compaq, all of whom provide NMAS authentication methods.
According to industry research group, International Data Corporation, the authorisation, authentication and administration market is expected to grow 18% year over year to reach $3,7 billion (about R25 billion) in 2003. As corporations move to a one net environment the need to ensure strong security measures are increased in order to protect sensitive, confidential information and business assets that reside on corporate networks.