Managed Security


CMDS is a revolutionary technology solution that simply adds a low level firewall, called the Desktop Security Engine (DSE), to each client computer, called nodes, within a given network. It is this simple integration of the DSE that enables the CMDS to come alive. By deploying CMDS, each node running DSE reports all activity to a Central Command Center Server. It is within this Central Command Server that user authentication and intrusion detection features of CMDS are administered and executed.

Firewalls, such as WinRoute Pro, provide security to a private LAN. CMDS takes this security to new heights by complimenting the currently installed firewall base and moving the security opportunities towards each node within the LAN.

At a bird’s-eye-glance, CMDS is a very simple architecture to understand. Within a LAN, there are numerous client workstations that are centrally connected to systems such as file servers, mail servers, and most importantly, the Internet. The clients are all protected from the outside world by a firewall at the gateway entrance from the Internet. They are not however protected from one another.

CMDS gives network administrators the ability to not only provide intrusion detection within the network between nodes and servers, but provides detailed logging for productivity analysis occurring on the node. By having the DSE on each node reporting to the Central Command Server, all actions occurring in relation to the user profile logged on that node is collected for proper usage in evaluating the user’s productivity and intent within the network. All reporting software on the node is entirely invisible to the end user of the node.

In addition to the DSE on the node, there is a Desktop Administration Utility (DAU). Also invisible to the user, the DAU allows for the network administrator to remotely manage the DSE residing on that node. Both the DSE and DAU are package together in a small application called the Desktop Security Agent (DSA). The DSA, consisting of its two components, performs bi-directional network traffic monitoring and access control. DSA is a version of Tiny Personal Firewall Version 2 catered for this system.

How Does It Work?

When an end user logs onto a node within the network, they activate their personal security profile. As the user proceeds to perform certain actions on that node, all action requests are sent to the Central Command Server that authenticates the request according to the personal security profile. For example, Tom will try to access files from the Accounting Server. Since Tom’s personal security profile does not include rights to this server, he will be denied and according to the configuration desires of the network administrator, the following may occur: An alert will be sent to the administrator or Tom’s supervisor, or maybe Tom’s node will immediately log him off and he will be unable to log back on until the administrator gives him that right. Another example will be the Internet access of certain web sites or just in-depth logging of all Tom’s network and Internet ventures.

The CMDS system allows for several reporting features in the Central Command Server to be activated per profile/node. These include: URL, File, Network Traffic, Email, Log-in/out and Productivity.

Good For Nodes, What About Servers?

CMDS is not only designed to report from the node installation within the network, but the server level as well. With slight modifications to the Desktop Security Agent, the servers within a network will contain an alternative application called the Server Security Agent, or SSA, and report to the Central Command Server all of its executed actions and will have server level security profiles.

Tiny Software is actively pursuing CMDS with is introduction of Tiny Personal Firewall version 2 with Remote Administration. Together with its industry partners, Tiny Software is extending network security to within.

About the author

Adrian Bitterson

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