We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
80,259 News Articles

Cisco, Microsoft, EMC join forces to thwart terror

Secure data sharing for US government

Cisco, Microsoft and EMC are set to build a system that lets the US government securely share data among its agencies. The US government has been looking for such a system since the September 2001 terrorist attacks.

The Sisa (Secure Information Sharing Infrastructure) project will create a system that allows data to be shared between the agencies, ensuring only the people who are authorised to access data are able to do so.

A report released in 2004 by the 9/11 Commission, which investigated the terrorist attacks, found that US intelligence agencies had cumbersome information-sharing practices that hampered their ability to counter terrorism.

The Sisa website gave scenarios of how the SISA system might be used. In one, a law enforcement agency raids an apartment and finds documents and financial ledgers in a foreign language. The material could be posted on an information-sharing site to be viewed by an investigator in another country.

The companies also gave a general view of how a person would be authenticated and access information from the network. A SISA administrator at a command center will access a user's profile in Microsoft's Active Directory, then establish a VPN (virtual private network) to let the user access the files they are permitted to view.

Cisco Security Agent governs the user's access to specific resources, such as write capabilities or a USB device, and the contents of emails and documents are protected with Liquid Machines and Microsoft's RMS (Rights Management Services).

Participating are Liquid Machines on content protection, Swan Island Networks on information-sharing architectures and Titus Labs on information labelling and classification. The business alliance between the companies will be managed by Addx.

Cisco, Microsoft and EMC will provide commercial, off-the-shelf products, with smaller vendors contributing specific technologies. Cisco will focus on secure networks and data protection, Microsoft on identity management and OSes, and EMC on storage.

The companies didn't provide a timetable or cost for the system, and government representatives weren't available early Tuesday.

Get the latest on PC security and securely sharing data at the Security Advisor zone

IDG UK Sites

LG G4 Note UK release date and specification rumours: Samsung Galaxy Note 5 killer could be the LG 3......

IDG UK Sites

In defence of BlackBerrys

IDG UK Sites

Why we should reserve judgement on Apple ditching Helvetica in OS X/iOS for the Apple Watch's San...

IDG UK Sites

Retina 3.3GHz iMac 27in preview: Apple cuts £400 of price of Retina iMac with new model