This is a guest blog post. Views expressed in this post are original thoughts posted by Graham Brown, Network Support Engineer at Imtech ICT Limited. These views are his own and in no way do they represent the views of the company he works for.
Winter is fast approaching (to the dismay of some, but not for me as this is a season I really enjoy because of my outdoor interests) and with the increasingly bad weather that we have experienced over the past few years in the UK, it is a good idea to take stock on the company’s business continuity plans or remote working capabilities. Ask yourself how many employees missed days in the office due to bad weather conditions last year, or the year before that? In December 2010 it was estimated that the financial impact of that years weather, could have cost the UK economy as much as £27.7bn.1
This was the challenge put in front of me towards the end of October 2010; I was given a high profile project to enable key teams within the business to be able to continue their work remotely, whatever the weather!
Obviously some kind of remote access would be required, it needed to be scalable to support at least 50% of the workforce (200 users) in the short term and have the ability to grow to over 400, assuming growth and every staff member having some kind of remote access capability. Access needed to be secure; clients must be authenticated to access the system, and authorised to the same level that they would have been given from within the office. Above all, the system should be flexible. And finally the required solution had to be OS agnostic and if possible clientless, in order to allow non-company supplied hardware access.
Ticking the box for all of the requirements and having the knowledge that Juniper Networks has both the leader and visionary position within the Gartner Quadrant for SSL VPN sewn up; their SA Series of SSL VPN appliances were chosen to provide the remote access functionality. Juniper has since added more products and functionality to its remote access portfolio. In addition to the SA appliances, there is a new range; the MAG Series Junos Pulse Gateways, which perform all remote access functionality. These also can be combined with standards based Network Access Control (NAC) and application acceleration functionality.
The Juniper SSL VPN appliances are licence based and can be sized for an immediate deployment, with room for future growth or additional functionality, such as contractor or business partner access. One of the great options available is the “In Case of Emergency” (ICE) licence. This gives you a boost of up to eight weeks to the number of available connections on your boxes – there are two types of licences available. The first will allow you to use 100% of the platforms total capacity, for the number of concurrent users able to connect; the second will give you a 25% burst based on the existing licence applied. If you have a 100-user licence, then you could connect 125 concurrent users for up to eight weeks – more than enough to cover an emergency or bad weather crisis situation.
These Juniper appliances are a dream to work with, very easy to set up and GUI driven. The developers obviously took a lot of trouble to ensure that the administrators could get these up and running with minimal fuss, get them racked and apply some very granular access policies with ease. Once again I approached these appliances armed with a trusty book – Juniper Networks Secure Access SSL VPN. This is a very well written guide to allow you to get the most out of your equipment; it certainly helped speed things up for me. One thing I feel that I have to mention is the failover when these devices are deployed in a cluster – the user is blissfully unaware that you are testing a failure scenario as session state is shared between devices, no traffic loss and no support calls are always a good thing.
Some people view SSL VPNs from a very sceptical perspective, mainly stemming from a deep routed history of using IPSec VPNs. If required you can deploy IPSec VPNs through these appliances, by using the Junos Pulse client. In addition to the usual IPSec functionality, you get SSL as a failback protocol in the event that IPSec cannot be established (ESP blocked for example). During the testing phase, I politely requested that some of the staff disconnect their VPNs. Their response was “I didn’t realise I was still connected” a glowing example of how quick and stable the connections can be.
Ultimately, the project was delivered on time, under budget and just in time for another fantastic, cold and snowy winter. Employees were able to work from home when travelling would have been dangerous or far too time consuming. This decreased the number of unnecessary journeys and ultimately increased productivity. If anyone has any comments or queries, or perhaps even similar deployment stories, please get in touch and share your thoughts. In the meantime, I’m hoping for another great winter season.
Title: Senior Vice President and General Manager of the Branch Solutions Business Unit
Area of Responsibility: Driving Juniper business including strategy, revenue/profitability, products and execution for this segment of SLT's overall portfolio, specifically comprehensive solutions for the small to medium size locations of large, distributed enterprises.
Alex joined Juniper in February 2008 after more than five years at Extreme Networks, where he served as Chief Operating Officer from mid 2002 through 2006, and the last year as VP and GM of Extreme's high-end switching business and core engineering operations. During his tenure at Extreme Alex led programs which established essential product lifecycle and quality systems, completely refreshed the product portfolio, significantly improved product and service quality and margins, and streamlined the supply chain.
Prior to Extreme Alex served as Chief Operating Officer for LCG Wireless (acquired by ADC Telecommunications), SVP Business Operations for ReplayTV, and earlier spent eight years in various executive roles with Octel Communications (acquired by Lucent Technologies) as CIO, SVP Business Operations, and SVP and GM of Enterprise Messaging. Alex holds a bachelors and masters degree in electrical engineering from Washington University in St. Louis.
Bill is the Director of Federal Certifications and Policy at Juniper Networks. In this role, Bill focuses on several areas unique to the needs of Federal Government customers, including product certifications, IPv6, and security. Bill came to Juniper Networks in January 2008 after more than 20 years in the IT community working with commercial enterprise customers, service providers, and the US Federal Government.
Bill started his career as an engineering officer in the US Air Force after graduating with a Bachelor of Aerospace Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology. Bill has an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
Brad Minnis, CPP is the Senior Director of Corporate Environmental, Health, Safety & Security for Juniper Networks, Inc. based in Sunnyvale, CA, where he is responsible for strategic design, implementation and management of the company’s security, safety, environment, crisis management and business continuity functions. He also leads the company’s efforts in corporate citizenship and sustainability, and manages the Corporation’s government-related security programs.
Mr. Minnis has over 30 years experience in the Silicon Valley and has managed EHSS operations for a number of high tech companies, including Juniper Networks, 3Com Corporation, and National Semiconductor Corporation.
Mr. Minnis’ specialties include security management, supply chain and product integrity, anti-counterfeit, occupational health and safety and crisis management. In his role as Cyber Incident Response Team Leader for Juniper, Mr. Minnis has managed numerous high impact cyber-related incidents and cross-functional responses.
Mr. Minnis served for ten years in the United States Navy and has served in leadership positions the International Security Management Association (ISMA) and ASIS International, serving as Chairman of the San Francisco Chapter in 2003. He has also co-written several publications on software integrity assurance and supply chain security with organizations such as SAFECode.
Mr. Minnis is certified as a Protection Professional by the Professional Certification Board of ASIS International and attended the University of Connecticut, where he received two certificates in Environmental, Health and Safety
François Prowse is a Senior Systems Engineer for Juniper Networks, based in Brisbane Australia. Francois joined Juniper in 2006 as part of the New Zealand SE team, subsequently relocating to Australia. Prior to Juniper, Francois worked for four years at Alcatel in both operational and architectural roles, being jointly responsible for the construction of New Zealands' largest MPLS core network. Prior to Alcatel, Francois worked at UUnet, focusing on core network expansion in Europe. In all previous roles JUNOS has been the driving factor behind day to day operations, providing him with over 8 years of operational experience. Francois is a Juniper Networks Certified Internet Expert (JNCIE #144) which he obtained prior to joining Juniper Networks.
Greg Sidebottom is a Senior Engineering Manager in the Identity and Policy Management business unit at Juniper Networks. Greg has spent the last decade plus conceptualizing, architecting, designing, and leading the implementation of Juniper's SDX and SRC families of policy based service management applications. Previous to this, Greg held positions in the software and networking industries at Siemens, Cognos, Nortel, GTE labs subsidiary MPR Teltech, and the Alberta Research Council. Greg is an author of eight invention disclosures resulting in two patents issued and three pending. Greg holds a B.Sc. in Computer Science for the University of Calgary and an M.Sc. and Ph.D. in Computing Science from Simon Fraser University.
Senior Product Line Manager – CTP Products Juniper Networks.
Jim Kelly is the senior product line manager for the CTP products where he is responsible for the CTP product direction, marketing and circuit emulation applications within Juniper Networks. Mr. Kelly has more than 28 years of experience in the networking industry in technical roles, sales, marketing, and product management positions. He started his career in the United States Air Force. He has worked for Wang, Digital Telecom Systems, American Airlines, Network Equipment Technologies, Carrier Access, and Nortel Networks. He started Juniper Networks federal DoD sales in July 2000 and joined Juniper Networks again in October 2005 through the acquisition of Acorn Packet Solutions where he was the director of sales and marketing.
Justin Ryburn is a Senior Systems Engineer at Juniper Networks. He holds an MBA and a MS in IT Management from Webster University as well as numerous industry certifications. Justin contributed content for Cyber Forensics (Auerbach Publishing, 2007) and spoke on BGP Flowspec at NANOG63. Prior to joining Juniper, Justin held various operations, engineering, and sales engineering positions over his 15-year career with companies such Savvis, Nortel, XO, and Charter.
I am currently a Sr. Product Marketing Manager specializing in Juniper's Security Portfolio in the Service Provider industry. I am an experienced senior technical leader, technical marketing engineer, solutions architect, and product marketing manager with over 20 years of Internet and Enterprise industry experience developing solutions from scratch often in relation with business units and technology groups, my projects ranged from product, solution, and technology development to corporate technology strategies. I have strong analytical skills and I am able to crunch and articulate complex technology to a variety of audience knowledge levels. I possess a deep hands-on technology and business knowledge of Service Provider and Enterprise architectures with deployment hands-on skills. I also bring a unique perspective of open source philosophy, including but not limited to open innovation, software development methodologies, open source monetization and business models, and licensing and compliance in software integration. I am a strategic leader with proved ability to empower a team to improve their product, themselves, their team, and our company’s market position.
30 Years in Book Publishing, 20 years in Technical Book Publishing, including Apple Developer Press, Adobe Press, Nokia Developer Books, Palm Books, and since 2001, almost 10 years as consulting editor/editor in chief for Juniper Networks Book. Joined the company and started the Day One book line and in 2011, the new This Week book line.
Rajoo Nagar is a senior manager in product marketing at Juniper Networks. She is responsible for product marketing for Juniper's security solutions. Rajoo is a published author, her book “Telecom Service Rollouts” was published by McGraw Hill Professional.
I'm a Product Line Manager in the Security Business Unit working on all things intrusion prevention-related. I've been in the security field since 1994 working on diverse projects such as developing HP's public-key infrastructure (PKI), building the first protocol anomaly-based IDS at Recourse Technologies (acquired by Symantec), integrating vulnerability management and IDS at VM vendor nCircle and managing IPS products at Cisco and Juniper.
Jonathan Looney is a Senior Staff Courseware Developer at Juniper Networks. Before joining Juniper, he performed network engineering for a large enterprise, a regional ISP, and an application service provider (ASP). The holder of several industry certifications, he enjoys the freedom his job at Juniper gives him to both continually learn and also to share his knowledge with others through a wide range of media.
Scott is the Director of Product Marketing for Mobile Security at Juniper Networks. In his 20+ years in high tech, Scott has worked on Mobile and Endpoint Security, Network Security, IPS, Managed Services, Network Infrastructure, Co-location, Microprocessor Architecture, Unix Servers and Network Adapters. He has held leadership roles at Check Point, McAfee, Symantec, Exodus Communications, Cable & Wireless, Savvis, and HP.
Sherry Ryan is IT Vice President and CISO of Juniper Networks. Previously, Sherry held similar positions at Blue Shield of California, Hewlett-Packard, Safeway and Levi Strauss where she established and led their information security programs. Sherry holds the Certified Information Security Manager (CISM) certification from ISACA and the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) certification from ISC2. She is a member of the High Tech Crime Investigation Association (HTCIA) and the Information Systems Security Association (ISSA).
Sherry has a bachelor's degree in Business Administration from the University of Redlands, and earned her MBA from the College of Notre Dame.