Symark International Joins Microsoft Interop Vendor Alliance

May 25th, 2011
Strengthened Interoperability Enables Organizations to Extend Microsoft's Group Policy Functionality to UNIX and Linux Systems using Symark’s PowerADvantage to Enhance Security and Compliance Posture

AGOURA HILLS, Calif. – April 22, 2008 – Symark International, developer of the PowerSeries information security solutions for managing privileged account access, today announced its membership in the Interop Vendor Alliance (IVA), a community of software and hardware vendors working together to enhance interoperability with Microsoft systems. Enhanced interoperability with Microsoft's Group Policy will strengthen the benefits of Symark’s PowerADvantage, an integrated authentication and configuration solution that extends Microsoft Active Directory's functionality to UNIX and Linux systems.

Microsoft Active Directory is quickly becoming the de facto standard for enterprise directory services. It has the largest market share and is a very stable, secure and scalable solution, said Eric Yoshizuru, vice president of product marketing at Symark International. Organizations across all industries typically have intricate heterogeneous IT environments consisting of multiple Windows, Linux and UNIX systems. By extending Active Directory's capabilities to Linux and UNIX platforms, Symark’s PowerADvantage provides customers with a cost-effective solution for sound systems administration to protect against insider threat and ensure compliance with PCI DSS, Sarbanes-Oxley, HIPAA and other regulations.

PowerADvantage delivers a single, centralized management solution that reduces costs, administrative overhead and training requirements while helping organizations strengthen their corporate security policies, increase productivity and simplify compliance reporting requirements. PowerADvantage enables:

  • Cross-platform Unified Login – Users are provided with a single login and password for all UNIX, Linux and Windows machines, eliminating the need to establish separate access credentials for varying systems. This increases efficiency and boosts productivity for end users while reducing calls to the help desk related to misplaced passwords.
  • Non-Intrusive Installation Process – Administrators can deploy PowerADvantage in a matter of minutes without making any changes to the Active Directory schema. PowerADvantage's simple agent installation process joins the host to Active Directory and implements the unified login function, eliminating any complex, time consuming configuration changes. Additionally, PowerADvantage's intelligent import tool streamlines and simplifies the importing and mapping of current UNIX and Linux user information directly into Active Directory.
  • Integration with Symark’s PowerBroker – PowerADvantage is the only solution that integrates with Symark’s PowerBroker, the industry's most comprehensive solution for authorization and access control within heterogeneous UNIX and Linux IT environments. The combination of PowerADvantage and PowerBroker enhances security and compliance efforts by facilitating efficient management of both end-user and administrator account access from Active Directory while controlling access and tasks performed using the root account.
  • Automated Deployment of Configuration Settings – Using Group Policy, IT administrators can leverage Active Directory to establish secure, centrally-managed configuration services to UNIX and Linux hosts (as well as to the applications running on them). Using either custom-created administrative templates or those provided by PowerADvantage, administrators create configuration settings that are automatically stored in Active Directory.
  • Targeted Configuration Management – PowerADvantage's configuration management capabilities leverage Active Directory's organizational unit structure to deliver targeted configuration services to any number of individual hosts within the IT environment. This enables administrators to apply the configuration settings to selected hosts or applications. For example, the Web servers running an organizations public Web site should be configured differently than the servers running the internal intranet. PowerADvantage facilitates the configuration of each group of servers differently. Additionally, customers can leverage Active Directory to establish a hierarchy of organizational units (with a specific host placed in the appropriate unit). The host will then inherit all the policies in this hierarchy and PowerADvantage will resolve any conflicting items in the policy and determine the proper group of settings to apply to the individual host.
  • Detailed Compliance Reports – PowerADvantage helps ensure that all activities performed on UNIX and Linux systems are written to the proper Active Directory logs. It produces audit reports required by Sarbanes-Oxley, PCI DSS and HIPAA, providing a comprehensive trail for auditors. This simplifies the compliance process, reducing overall audit costs and allowing for the more rapid discovery of inconsistencies.
The addition of established industry leaders like Symark International to the IVA helps the Alliance successfully identify and solve the most critical interoperability challenges facing organizations today, said Sam Rosembalm, Interop Vendor Alliance manager, Microsoft. Ensuring interoperability for security and compliance purposes is especially crucial, so we look forward to Symark’s participation in the IVA as we seek to help IT administrators ease the burden of protecting digital assets and complying with industry and federal regulations by improving the interoperability of best-of-breed solutions across multiple systems.
About Symark International
Symark International is the leading provider of systems access management solutions for heterogeneous IT environments. Symark PowerBroker enables granular delegation of administrative privileges while restricting UNIX/Linux root account access. Symark PowerPassword provides UNIX/Linux user account management along with login and password security policies. Symark PowerKeeper controls access to shared administrative accounts for servers, applications, and network devices for multiple platforms. Symark PowerADvantage extends Microsoft Active Directory's centralized authentication, authorization, account access, policy enforcement and infrastructure management functionality to UNIX and Linux systems. All products offer a non-intrusive architecture, central administration, accountability at the systems level and detailed audit logs. Symark offers extensive expertise in enterprise computing security, and its products are backed by unmatched technical support. For more information, visit us at www.symark.com.
About The Interop Vendor Alliance
The Interop Vendor Alliance is an industry-wide group working to identify and share opportunities to better connect people, data and diverse systems through better interoperability with Microsoft systems and to jointly market interoperability solutions of its members. The organization serves as a collaborative forum for developing and sharing common technology models, facilitates scenario-based testing of multivendor solutions and works to communicate additional best practices to users. Since its formation in 2006, alliance membership has more than doubled as the IVA has developed five interoperability labs for Systems Management, Centralized Directory, Federated Identity, Content Management, and Open XML. Additional information about the Interop Vendor Alliance can be found on its Web site at http://www.interopvendoralliance.org
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