Check Point NGX Unites Security Management

The Redwood City, Calif.-based security vendor's new NGX platform rolls management of Check Point's perimeter, internal and Web security products into one console, said David Burton, director of product marketing. The company this month also will release NGX-related upgrades to 21 of its products, he said.

The centralized management of firewalls, VPN gateways and intrusion prevention is an important advancement, said Bob Cohen, president and CEO of CG Atlantic, a New York-based security specialist.

"We're the guys finding and resolving problems for our customers, and we think this will reduce the mean time to resolution," Cohen said.

Steven Snider, president of Cadre, a Check Point partner in Cincinnati, concurred. "Tying the management console into all the products gives our customers' IT staff the ability to do more with less," he said. "For the guy on the front lines, this is going to make his job a lot easier."

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With the launch of NGX, Check Point maintains its technological leadership status, Cohen said. "Companies like Cisco and Juniper were beginning to catch up with Check Point, but this proves they are best of breed," he said. "With NGX, they continue to lead the way."

In addition to unified security management, NGX also enhances application protection with stronger application-level inspection and added protection for DNS security, e-mail security and P2P, Burton said. NGX also delivers enhanced protocol support and NAT support for VoIP, including denial-of-service prevention for major VoIP protocols, Burton added.

Adding a layer of protection for VoIP is timely, Snider said. "A lot of our customers are looking very seriously at VoIP right now, and it's supported right out of the box," he said.

In addition to the NGX platform, Check Point this month is releasing NGX-related upgrades to 21 of its products, including VPN-1 Pro, Check Point Express, SmartCenter, Provider-1, Web Intelligence, SSL Network Extender, Secure PlatformPro and Eventia Reporter, the new version of SmartView Reporter. New versions of VSX, VPN-1 Edge, InterSpect and Connectra are slated for "the very near future," Burton said.

The upgrades are free to existing Check Point customers with a current Enterprise Software subscription. All of Check Point's NG products are upgradable to the new NGX platform, Burton said.

NGX will mean big business for partners as they take the upgrade to their Check Point customers, Burton said. Some 386,000 Check Point gateways have been installed globally, he added.