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IBM Announces Security Software For Small Businesses

Posted by iNext - 2006-02-20

IBM today debuted new security software designed to help small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) automate identity management. This new application helps smaller companies thwart insider attacks and automate compliance by identifying "orphan accounts" and stopping unauthorized access to company data.

Called Tivoli Identity Manager Express, IBM said it will provide enterprise-class identity management capabilities at a price point that will be attractive to smaller businesses, and in a version that non-IT users can install and manage.

"Implementing identity management is really an issue in the SMB market, because smaller companies don't have the time or money to implement the existing identity management solutions," said Steve Henning, manager of security and integration products, IBM Tivoli.

More than 70 percent of fraud cases that involve customer data are insider attacks, said Henning. "Companies spend a lot of money trying to keep the bad guys out. But the real problems are usually insiders--like the disgruntled ex-employee who had an account that was active when it should have been terminated," said Henning, who said that according to IBM studies, 30 percent to 60 percent of small business accounts are "orphans" that either belong to someone who no longer works for the organization, or no longer has responsibilities that require access.

Tivoli Identity Manager Express helps prevent insider attacks by blocking people from using user names and accounts that the company neglected to cancel. The software also simplifies compliance efforts for smaller businesses by cutting down on the time it takes to compile information and prepare reports, automatically collecting and formatting information so that it's ready to be submitted to the compliance auditor. The software can also detect potential attempts to steal customers by indicating who has accessed sensitive sales information, and who approved their access.

One of the big advantages of the software, according to Henning, is its ability to help companies cut down on the cost of managing passwords. When employees forget or lose passwords, it typically costs a business $20 for each password reset request, according to IDC. IBM's new software enables employees to automatically get a new password on their own, in minutes.

Tivoli Identity Manager Express will be available on February 28, 2006

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