Funk's Odyssey Has Just Begun

Security solution addresses wireless LANs

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Funk Software is set this week to unveil an 802.1x security solution for wireless LANs.

The product, called Odyssey, is designed to allow an organization to deploy a WLAN securely.

It is also easy to use and manage, said Joe Ryan, vice president at Funk Software, based here.

>> Odyssey supports multiple Extensible Authentication Protocol (EAP) types.
>> Costs $2,500, including server and 25 client licenses. Stand-alone clients cost $50 each; quantity discounts are available.
>> Due to ship this month.


"The wireless LAN business has been held back by corporations' legitimate concerns over security," Ryan said. "This enables an enterprise to confidently deploy wireless LAN solutions."

Odyssey, which includes client and server software, allows users to securely access WLANs and protects wireless communications against a range of attacks, he said.

The product provides protection against "dictionary attacks," in which an eavesdropper tests random passwords to discover a password, Ryan said. It also guards against rogue access points and "man-in-the-middle attacks," whereby an eavesdropper hijacks a user's credentials, he said.

The product supports the standard 802.1x security method, EAP-TLS, which is included in Windows XP. It also supports EAP-TTLS, which Funk Software said is easy to manage because it does not require users to have certificates.

The company plans to release Odyssey for beta testing this week and ship the product in late February.

"You're not going to implement a wired LAN infrastructure without securing it. It's the same with a wireless LAN," said Dan Hartman, co-founder and CTO of WBConnect, a Denver-based wireless voice and data solution provider being acquired by InDigiNet, a provider of managed communications solutions.

Odyssey could provide an alternative to a VPN solution for small and midsize businesses, he said.

Ryan said the product leverages companies' investments in Windows. Odyssey Client runs on Windows XP, 2000, 98 and ME. Odyssey Server, based on the RADIUS protocol, runs on Windows XP or 2000 and allows a company to authenticate WLAN clients with its existing Windows infrastructure.

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