Wi-Fi Alliance Accepts OpenSEA 802.1X Supplicant

June 22, 2009

PLEASANTON, Calif., June 22 /PRNewswire/ — Today, the OpenSEA Alliance announced its 802.1X supplicant has been accepted into the Wi-Fi Alliance’s Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA) test bed. The acceptance is an important milestone in the development of open security standards for wireless networking and continues the momentum towards OpenSEA’s goal of promoting the development and distribution of an open source 802.1X supplicant. With the acceptance of the OpenSEA supplicant, the WPA testbed will now include two open source and two commercial supplicants, reflecting the maturity of open source implementations of key wireless security protocols. With the new test bed components, the Wi-Fi Alliance is adopting the same open source software already used by many end users worldwide.

“Strong security is critical to enterprise networks and Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA2) is at the heart of Wi-Fi(tm) CERTIFIED testing for interoperability,” said Wi-Fi Alliance executive director Edgar Figueroa. “OpenSEA’s participation in this program is instrumental in ensuring that enterprise users get the full benefit of the latest secure, interoperable wireless technology.”

“The Open1X Project is pleased to be selected for the Wi-Fi Alliance’s WPA certification testbed. Open source software has a long history of supporting the development and testing of open industry standards by providing reference implementations. Product vendors and end users rely on proven interoperable technologies when creating open standards, and the user community benefits from readily available source code that allows users to directly participate in the development of the technology. As many new types of wireless devices continue to be developed, portable reference code for wireless security will become increasingly important,” said Matthew Gast, a board member of the OpenSEA Alliance and Chief Strategist at Trapeze Networks.

About 802.1X, Authenticators and Supplicants

802.1X is an IEEE standard providing authentication in LANs. It is used extensively in 802.11 wireless security and is a part of WPA, and is increasingly being used in wired Ethernet environments as well. The 802.1X specification provides an authentication framework enabling endpoint devices to be authenticated by a central authentication service using the Extensible Authentication Protocol (EAP). When a client presents valid user credentials, the authentication server sends an “accepted” message to the authenticator which then grants network access to the supplicant.

The OpenSEA Alliance was formed in 2007 by leading networking and security technology companies, including Symantec Corporation, TippingPoint, and Trapeze Networks, in conjunction with JANET(UK). SEA is an acronym for “Secure Edge Access.” The group uses the word “open” because it develops and promotes open-source offerings. Likewise, OpenSEA has a strong preference for implementing each component with open standards. As developers of many of the technology components, OpenSEA Alliance members are also keenly aware of the potential for a “sea change” as technologies and products supporting or leveraging OpenSEA’s offerings gain broad acceptance and pervasive deployment.

End users and network managers benefit greatly from having robust open-source offerings for secure edge access using the latest open standards. By implementing open offerings in the secure edge access arena, organizations are not tied to a particular vendor or host operating system. The OpenSEA Alliance source code, bug database, documentation, and future plans are publicly available at all times.

In addition to IT organizations, the OpenSEA Alliance is also dedicated to work with other technology vendors, government agencies, academic institutions, and individual contributors. Members of the alliance benefit from the pooling of resources for development, testing, promotion, and awareness. Standards development organizations benefit from having widely available implementations of standards to provide direct feedback on the technology and future standards revisions. They will also see first hand what elements of the technology is receiving the most interest in the user base.

About the Wi-Fi Alliance

The Wi-Fi Alliance is a global non-profit industry association of hundreds of leading companies devoted to the proliferation of Wi-Fi technology across devices and market segments. With technology development, market building, and regulatory programs, the Wi-Fi Alliance has enabled widespread adoption of Wi-Fi, worldwide.

The Wi-Fi CERTIFIED(TM) program was launched in March 2000. It provides a widely-recognized designation of interoperability and quality, and it helps to ensure that Wi-Fi enabled products deliver the best user experience. The Wi-Fi Alliance has completed more than 5,000 product certifications to date, encouraging the expanded use of Wi-Fi products and services in new and established markets.

Wi-Fi(R), Wi-Fi Alliance(R), WMM(R), the Wi-Fi CERTIFIED logo, the Wi-Fi logo, and the Wi-Fi ZONE logo are registered trademarks of the Wi-Fi Alliance; Wi-Fi CERTIFIED(TM), Wi-Fi Protected Setup(TM), Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA)(TM), Wi-Fi Multimedia(TM), and the Wi-Fi Alliance logo are trademarks of the Wi-Fi Alliance.

About Trapeze Networks

Trapeze Networks, a Belden Brand, is a leader in enterprise wireless LAN equipment and management software. Trapeze was the first company to introduce NonStop Wireless – delivering unmatched reliability to enterprise wireless LAN and its solutions. Wireless LAN is optimized for companies requiring mobility and high bandwidth such as healthcare, education, and hospitality. Trapeze delivers Smart Mobile(TM) which also provides scalable wireless LANs for applications such as voice over Wi-Fi, location services, and indoor/outdoor connectivity.

SOURCE Trapeze Networks

Source: newswire

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