The Pipeline

Lenovo’s super security; Two for one.

Lenovo’s super security
It may not leap tall buildings in a single bound, but a new security technology that Lenovo is using on some of its ThinkPad laptop PCs encrypts hard drives with a single fingerprint swipe.

The other big deal about this technology, made by Utimaco and called SafeGuard Easy Version 4.30, is that it authenticates users via a fingerprint reader before the machine boots.

That’s an extremely high level of security because it closes the backdoor. Users who don’t have the proper authentication are completely locked out of the system, unlike a machine that boots and starts up the operating system even before a password is entered.

“It’s difficult to do the matching of the fingerprint before you have the operating system engaged,” said Clain Anderson, director of ThinkVantage Technologies at Lenovo. “It required us to do special work with the BIOS in order to enable the whole process before the [operating system] is present. No one’s ever done this before.”

After a user completes a one-time fingerprint registration and hard-drive encryption process, the ThinkPad automatically encrypts the hard drive whenever a user logs off or shuts down the machine. Then, at each subsequent boot-up or log-in, a single fingerprint swipe authenticates the user and unencrypts the hard drive.

The SafeGuard Easy 4.30 has received Federal Information Processing Standard 140-2 certification, which the government requires when agencies purchase encryption products.

Another noteworthy feature on certain ThinkPad models is compatibility with the upcoming 802.11n wireless connectivity specification. That specification promises extremely fast connection speeds of at least 100 megabits/sec.

Two for one
Step right up, ladies and gentlemen, and feast your eyes on this two-for-one deal from Xythos Software.

But make no mistake. The company’s new Enterprise Document Manager Version 6.0 is no circus trick. It’s a software package for government users that combines content management with an electronic records management solution.

Xythos is also offering the records management package to existing customers for free. New customers can buy a starter package that costs $25,000 for 100 users or one of Xythos’ enterprise packages priced from $45,000 for 250 users to $300,000 for 10,000 users.

The records management solution meets the Defense Department’s 5015.2 standard. It’s conveniently embedded in the Xythos software as another folder in the directory structure. Enterprise Document Manager 6.0, which lets government agencies consistently apply records and retention policies, comes with a host of new features.

For example, you can now audit at the folder and system level, employ role-based security, and enact multiphase retention rules. You can monitor activity by user or document type, archive e-mail and attachments as records, schedule updates to vital documents, manage physical documents, and include groups in workflows.

The new release offers a file plan report for reviewing the security and configuration of files and folders, and you can use different document and record attributes to filter, sort and display search results.