March 13, 2014 - 12:00
Home-grown GFI solution gives small and mid-sized businesses access to software-defined wireless capabilities; hardware-agnostic nature keeps costs down and avoids equipment vendor lock-in
GFI Software™today unveiled GFI WirelessSentry™ (GFI WiSe™), a cloud-based solution designed to allow IT administrators to easily monitor, manage and secure their wireless networks, optimizing performance while protecting users from wireless threats, regardless of the networking hardware deployed.
GFI WiSe uses a simple-to-deploy lightweight sensor on a local machine near each access point, in conjunction with a web-based cloud management console. After deploying the sensor, WiSe automatically identifies nearby wireless networks and access points, which can then be easily monitored and managed via an intuitive dashboard that can be accessed using a variety of browser-equipped devices.
GFI WiSe works with a company’s existing systems, regardless of make and model, eliminating the need to make large investments in compatible hardware. GFI WiSe’s vendor agnostic approach makes it an ideal option for SMBs who want a centrally-managed solution that controls costs around usage monitoring while assuring their network is secured and protected from rogue access points.
GFI WiSe features include:
· Vendor and AP agnostic: There’s no need to replace existing access points, as GFI WiSe works with any existing hardware. As a result, costs are kept low and the need for forklift upgrades of equipment are eliminated, along with vendor lock-in.
· Remote management of Wi-Fi networks: GFI WiSe’s cloud-based console makes networks accessible from virtually anywhere via a web-based console.
· Wireless vulnerability assessment and detection: The GFI WiSe wireless intrusion detection system (WIDS) enhances security by detecting threats and vulnerabilities, including rogue access points in and around an organization’s wireless network, alerting IT staff to their existence.
· Bandwidth monitoring: GFI WiSe sensors monitor the wireless connections and traffic on the access point. Sensors poll into the web console on a configured interval over a secured connection. Upon check-in, the sensor sends updated device connection and usage information to the web console.
· VIP Monitoring: GFI WiSe enables you to mark certain devices as “VIP”. This ensures you receive instant alerts when those devices connect to the network, and that you know their location. With complete knowledge of the SSID, access point and device the VIP is using, you can ensure business continuity for executives on the move.
· Real time alerts: GFI WiSe enables IT administrators and wireless network managers to monitor their networks via the dashboard. In addition, support staff can receive real-time alerts for critical and warning
events via SMS or email. The graphical reporting tool allows users to easily attain detailed network usage information and share it with stakeholders.
“GFI WiSe is a vital tool for IT administrators to monitor, manage and secure their wireless estate,” said Sergio Galindo, general manager of the Infrastructure Business Unit at GFI Software. “Its monitoring capability helps reduce wireless network down time, its management capability enables users to manage wireless networks with multiple locations, and its security feature does everything from identifying rogue access points and detecting all client devices connecting to their wireless network to locating threats and vulnerabilities in client networks.It is a very simple and straightforward way for IT administrators to monitor and manage their networks at a very reasonable price point.”
The growing need for powerful Wi-Fi network management and oversight in SMBs was reinforced by a recent independent survey of 1,000 U.S. employees conducted by Opinion Matters, which revealed 97 percent of respondents reported using their personal mobile device for work. With BYOD becoming more pervasive in the workplace, the amount of devices connecting to the network, despite employee headcounts remaining the same, is growing rapidly. This creates the added responsibility for already resource-strapped SMB IT administrators to have to manage and secure their Wi-Fi networks to accommodate the influx of devices. In the same survey, nearly 40 percent of users surveyed admitted to using mobile devices to circumvent existing IT security and data policies in the workplace. Furthermore, 20 percent of those surveyed had no security measures enabled on their mobile devices, including AV, PIN numbers, access passwords or remote wipe capabilities, making their devices the weakest link in a Wi-Fi network.
These findings illustrate the need for administrators to have transparency in their Wi-Fi network and be able to manage its operation closely, while maintaining security, even when under the added strain of supporting a growing number of devices and a mixed range of network equipment.
GFI WiSe is easy to install, maintain and can be up and running in minutes, without the need to replace any existing hardware. IT administrators quickly gain greater insight into the devices connecting to their networks; where, when and how users are connecting; and the amount of bandwidth used. In addition, GFI WiSe enhances wireless security and protects users against rogue access points in and around IT administrators’ wireless networks.
Pricing and Availability
GFI WiSe is available immediately and prices start from €187 per access point and is based on an annual subscription model.
For more information about GFI WiSe and to register for a 30-day trial, visit: https://www.gfi.com/wise
About GFI Software
GFI Software™ develops quality IT solutions for small to mid-sized businesses with generally up to 1,000 users. GFI® offers two main technology solutions: GFI MAX™, which enables managed service providers (MSPs) to deliver superior services to their customers; and GFI Cloud™, which empowers companies with their own internal IT teams to manage and maintain their networks via the cloud. Serving an expanding customer base of more than 200,000 companies, GFI’s product line also includes collaboration, network security, anti-spam, patch management, faxing, mail archiving and web monitoring. GFI is a channel-focused company with thousands of partners throughout the world. The company has received numerous awards and industry accolades, and is a longtime Microsoft® Gold ISV Partner.