Sophos primes desktop with free NAC

New client does a bit of everything.

Security vendor Sophos has thrown down a gauntlet of sorts to its rivals, by bundling basic network access control (NAC) with its enterprise anti-virus client for the first time.

Sophos already has a wide range of security functions in its all-purpose security client -- anti-malware, firewalling, and some application filtering -- but with the launch of Sophos Endpoint Security and Control 8.0 it has added capabilities that can tie down 'endpoints', as they are known in security jargon, to a new degree of sophistication.

Putting NAC into software once thought of as a barrier to security threats such as viruses is a new, if predicted, departure. For managed PCs, the free upgrade will let admins constantly assess the state of patching and the software health of a machine against company defined policies, blocking access if necessary. Visiting or 'alien' laptops from third parties can be blocked until a downloadable web-based agent has been run.

According to Sophos, most admins still have little idea what state a PC or laptop might be in at the point it connects to a network, and no way at all of assessing the laptops of third-party partners and contractors.

For those requiring more finely tuned control, the company is planning a separate product, Sophos NAC Advanced. This will do much the same job as Endpoint Security and Control as regards policy enforcement, but to an advanced level of refinement. Specific pricing wasn't available for this upgrade, but is was described as being in the order of around "30 percent" extra on top of buying a licence for the all-in-one client.

"NAC has been touted as the answer to this problem, but has often been beyond the reach of most companies in terms of budget and resource," said John Shaw of Sophos.

"Its [Endpoint Security and Control's] integrated NAC and application control technology gives administrators the confidence that all the computers on their network are updated with the latest security patches and are only running authorized software," he said.

Shaw also pointed to research by Forrester that had found that 40 percent of companies had tried NAC, all but four percent backing off in the face of the complexity it added to network management. Putting a simple level of NAC in the desktop security client would help the technology reach the mainstream, he claimed.

It is just over a year since Sophos acquired Endforce, from where it got the core endpoint technology in the latest release.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John E. Dunn

Techworld.com
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?