FireScope Uses Google Maps To Monitor Network

FireScope Uses Google Maps To Monitor Network

The FireScope management portal is using Google Maps to give IT managers a real-time view of their infrastructure, even if it's spread around the globe.

Google Maps can be used for more than finding a great restaurant on a business trip, or pinpointing your house on a satellite image.

FireScope has added Google Maps to its FireScope management portal, enabling IT managers to view all of their security products and infrastructure pieces at work real-time in all of the company's locations -- even if they're spread across the globe. Firewalls, intrusion-detection systems, routers, and switches can all be monitored and managed from the one portal.

"We were really looking for something that would tie in the products we have but give us much better visibility into our environment," says Joe Holop, chief technology officer of Telscape Communications, a local exchange carrier in Monrovia, Calif. "This was an opportunity for us to solve a key problem. As we continue to grow, we're trying to avoid adding additional people power, utilizing tools to keep our cost down. We had budgeted for two new people but avoided [making the hires] because now we can manage everything through the product."

FireScope partnered with Google Maps, using it as the interface for the portal appliance, which was launched on March 6. The map gives users a single view into their security infrastructure. On the screen, IT managers can see map points, which are the locations of any of their security-related products along with any offices, warehouses, or facilities spread across the globe, explains Mark Lynd, president of FireScope. Click on the point-and-see real-time monitoring and analysis of the links between the physical locations, and users can track how the pieces of the infrastructure are functioning and get a report of any incidents.

The product is designed, for instance, so that a click on the map point for a single building or

switch site? Now we can assimilate the real location and do a meaningful drill down."
Along with saving Telscape the cost of adding two new IT workers, Holop says the FireScope appliance flagged security risks that had been going unnoticed. "With the tool's discovery capabilities, we were able to uncover some issues that, even with the added manpower, we wouldn't have found," he explains. "On our firewalls we had some ports that weren't a severe vulnerability but there was a potential for hacking, so we closed those down. And we had some instances where we uncovered that some methods we were using to lock some clients down weren't working well enough. We were able to flag it all."

Four different FireScope appliances are available, ranging in price from $10,000 to $100,000.

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