Review: StillSecure Safe Access

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Review: StillSecure Safe Access

Safe Access from StillSecure offers a full network access control system that includes functionality for ensuring endpoints on the network meet policy and compliance standards before being able to join the network and access network resources.

 

This product can detect many different types of devices, including desktops, laptops, tablets, smartphones, VoIP phones, along with a few other types, and match them with the appropriate compliance policy for testing.

We found initial deployment to be quite easy. The first part is done by accessing the default IP address of the appliance through a web browser, which launches a short configuration wizard. After the wizard is complete, the appliance is ready for deployment in the network, and all further management is done via the web-based management console. We found this console to be intuitive to navigate with many configurable options, reports and dashboards.

As for policy configuration, this tool proved to be highly customizable and configurable. Policies can be made to be as granular or as broad as necessary by using policy groups. We also found the access control policy to contain many options for device compliance, including regulatory compliance options for HIPAA, PCI, GLBA, andSOX, among many others. Compliance policy can be set to various patch levels, software security settings, encryption requirements and protection services, such as anti-virus among others. Devices found to be non-compliant can be placed in quarantine until manually repaired or in a remediation network where they can be automatically made compliant by third-party patch management tools or tools on-board the appliance. Safe Access also includes exclusive controls and policies for managing guest access to the network and network resources. 

Documentation included an installation guide, quick-start card and full user guide. The installation guide focuses on installing the appliance software and initial deployment procedures, while the quick-start card offers a brief overview of the appliance dashboard and features. All other configuration and feature information is found in the user guide. We found all documentation to contain an excellent amount of detail including step-by-step instructions, examples and screen shots.

StillSecure offers customers assistance through a support and maintenance agreement. Customers with an active agreement have access to 24/7 phone- and email-based technical support along with access to a small area on the website where customers can download product updates. However, we found no knowledge base or other resources available on the website. We find that customer self-service support resources are quite useful and we would like to see these added.

StillSecure Safe Access is not an inexpensive endeavor. This product has a cost starting at $2,300 for the hardware itself, plus $36 per IP license and $7.20 per IP maintenance for 1,000 IPs. However, we find this product to be a good value for the money. While it is quite expensive, it does provide very configurable and flexible network access control options for many environments, including large-scale complex enterprises.

Weak support options hurt this otherwise fine product. Otherwise, it offers lots of features and is quite flexible.

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