NSA approves first products for secure remote access

NSA approves first products for secure remote access

By William Jackson

GCN Staff

The National Security Agency has approved the first commercial products for its Remote Access Security Program. Government users have NSA's OK to transmit data at the secret level with the RASP Secure Access suite from Kasten Chase Applied Research Ltd. of Toronto.

RASP Secure Access consists of the OPtiva Secure Plus remote-access server from Kasten Chase and the Palladium Secure Modem from Mykotronx Inc. of Irvine, Calif. The two provide strong authentication and encryption of transmitted data when used with a Fortezza encryption card from Spyrus Inc. of Santa Clara, Calif.

NSA is evaluating a third suite component, Spyrus' Talisman/DS encryptor for data stored on PC hard drives.

NSA's RASP aims to provide more commercial remote-access products for classified government networks.

Kasten Chase began field trials in 1997 and offered RASP Secure Access commercially last October. More than 40 systems are in use, mostly in laboratory test environments, said Steve Ducat, vice president and general manager of Kasten Chase's secure access solutions division.

Government users include the Defense Department's Atlantic and European commands, the Air Force command in Europe and the Defense Information Systems Agency, Ducat said.

The OPtiva dedicated remote-access server for IP and Novell IPX LANs was optimized for the 33.6-Kbps Palladium modem, which does on-board cryptographic processing. The Palladium, a Type II PC Card modem, was designed for use with a Fortezza card. It uses the Fortezza key exchange algorithm and a personal identification number to authenticate both ends of a connection, plus the Skipjack algorithm for encrypting traffic between remote user and server.

Each server supports up to eight modems, which can handle 50 to 100 users depending on frequency and length of sessions, said Robert Miskimmin, director of marketing for Kasten Chase's secure access solutions division.

RASP Secure Access costs about $1,000 per user for 100 or more users.

Contact Kasten Chase at 905-238-6900.

Stay Connected

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.