Inclusion in some government lists may not be such a good thing… for example, the government “no fly list” could be a bummer as you board your flight on your next family vacation. Yet, other government lists can make or break you when it comes to doing business with the Federal Government. Last week, the award winning Cisco CleanAir technology was placed on the all important DoD Unified Capabilities APPROVED PRODUCT LIST (DoD UC/APL). The DoD APL happens to be the official product list that DoD agencies are required to work from when making new acquisitions for network equipment such as routers, switches, WLAN, voice, video etc. With the latest Cisco DoD APL certification, the Cisco CleanAir 3500 Series Access Point becomes the first DoD approved product that supports “built-in” system level spectrum intelligence in support of mission critical wireless networks.
In some ways, the DoD APL is like an exclusive club for a select group of IT vendors –either you are a club member or you stand outside the gate. The process to get products listed on the APL is no cakewalk. First, even before products can be considered for the APL process, the products must meet a series of stringent DoD requirements and certifications such as DISA STIGS, FIPS & Common Criteria. Next, a DoD sponsor must agree to represent the vendor’s products throughout the APL certification process. The actual certification process itself involves several months of rigorous interoperability and Information Assurance compliance testing.
Cisco was recently awarded three separate government cryptographic validations in network routing for 12 of its newest Cisco Integrated Services Routers Generation 2 (ISR G2) by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), pursuant to U.S. Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) 140-2.
The new platforms are architected to enable the next phase of branch-office evolution, providing rich mediacollaboration and virtualization to the branch while maximizing operational cost savings.
The newly validated FIPS 140-2 Level 2 Cryptographic validated products include:
These two items are really well matched. CiscoLive has a rich history focused directly on knowledge sharing, learning and of course certifications. This is what I really love about these events -- tons of smart geeks looking to have fun and get smarter.
Our goal for this special edition of TechWiseTV is to dive into the motivation and the opportunity of using CiscoLive as a milestone in your career. These events occur in key cities around the world featuring abundant benefits for those pursuing career advancement in the networking field.
Over the last few months, we have had a growing number of discussions around IPv6. What I have found fascinating is the number of varying reasons for the increasing momentum around this topic.
Address exhaustion has long been the most hyped reason for moving to IPv6. While the number of IPv4 addresses is diminishing rapidly, our conversations suggest that there are additional reasons for this momentum. These include:
- government mandates which we have seen in a number of countries, including the US.
- increasing numbers of Smart+Connected Communities
- the continuing explosive growth of mobile devices
- issues around content delivery, particularly in parts of the world that are leapfrogging and heading straight to v6 due to lack of sufficient v4 addresses (for example, China and India).
Today, Cisco announced that it leads in total USGv6 certification for routers, switches and firewalls. In addition, Cisco is the first vendor to be certified by the IPv6 Forum to offer IPv6 education and certification. Building on this momentum, Cisco is introducing new ASR-1000 features to help customers with IPv6 migration. This is in addition to providing use cases and professional services developed to help customers make a smooth transition.
In our conversations, a lack of guidelines/use cases and professional services were cited as being gating factors to increased adoption of IPv6. With today’s announcement, Cisco is building on its leadership in this area to help our customers by addressing this gap.
I welcome your feedback on this topic.
For more information on today’s announcement, please click here.
A while back, I blogged on the topic of Sovereignty and National Security. Since then, much has happened, most notably the moves by some governments to require access to source code on the grounds of national security before a foreign product can be imported and used in the country. Others have insisted for products to be manufactured locally, or that intellectual know-how of the product be transferred as part of the conditions of permitting a product to be procured. These are variations of the recurring theme of requiring local control to ensure national security and to protect sovereignty against foreign influence.
One cannot deny that there are very real security concerns and threats faced by governments today that need to be addressed more adequately. Even consumers are rightly worried about security of their data and personal information, especially as more cloud computing services become available.
Some argue that proprietary products are ‘secretive’, and that they rely on the customers’ faith in the vendor that the products operate securely. Others say that it is much easier for attackers to uncover vulnerabilities when they have access to the source code, rather than trying to compromise a “black-box”.
Who is right? Is the disclosure of source code directly correlated to product security? Is there a better way to ensure security without resorting to excluding the use of foreign manufactured products?