Juniper adds security software support

JEDI group takes saber to security issues

Juniper Networks is making a big push into SSL security. The company on Monday updated its NetScreen Secure Access SSL VPNsecurity appliance that further integrates it with end-point security software packages. Juniper also announced a new initiative with several companies to provide better security across a network.

The new NetScreen update works closely with several end-point security software packages to help network administrators manage security across the network, according to Juniper officials. Juniper calls its initiative with end-point security companies the Juniper Endpoint Defense Initiative (JEDI). It focuses on client-based security packages, but also includes endpoint services launched from a centralized server.

Juniper has several partners in the initiative, including InfoExpress, McAfee, Microsoft, Sygate Technologies, Trend Micro, and Whole Security. "Only a few client-based agents and server-based products remain to be integrated into the JEDI initiative," said Johnnie Konstantas, senior policy manager for security products at Juniper.

The JEDI effort consists of three main elements. A host check server integration interface allows third-party security agents to be downloaded from a Juniper SSL VPN appliance. In the second element, a host check client interface establishes trust policies for PCs that have their own installed anti-virus firewall or other end-point client software. The final piece is a native host check that allows a loosely coupled policy enforcement to establish trust for hosts not using Juniper APIs, said Konstantas.

The new SSL VPN product scans hosts for viruses, worms, and other potential security flaws. It also checks for the latest version of security software on the client. If the security software has not been updated, the product will send the appropriate software updates and security patches to the client, said Konstanas. 

Juniper acquired the technology for the NetScreen Secure Assess SSL VPN when it purchased NetScreen earlier this year.

Juniper also announced it has joined Microsoft's Network Access Protection (NAP) program, in which open APIs are used in conjunction with some proprietary extensions to provide security across a network.