Microsoft is providing an update on release timing for Forefront code name “Stirling,” an integrated security suite that combines the next-generation Forefront solutions for endpoint, messaging & collaboration, and network protection with a central management console.
Previously, we communicated that “Stirling” was targeted for release in the first half of this year.
So, why the delay?
We have been working closely with customers in our Technology Adoption Program to gather their feedback about how we can deliver the best experience and value with “Stirling.” One of the top customer requests was adding interoperability with third party security solutions. In response, we plan to increase our focus on one of the unique features of “Stirling”, Security Assessment Sharing (SAS.) SAS correlates security events from different Forefront products and third party solutions, enabling administrators to quickly investigate and remediate security events. We will provide information about interoperability partners in the near future.
Additionally, we are investing significantly in a behavior-based technology called Dynamic Signature Service to help deliver more comprehensive endpoint protection for zero day attacks. This will complement the "Stirling" suite's advanced heuristics, dynamic translation and real time application scanning for kernel level malware with a sophisticated approach to on-demand threat mitigation.
Stay tuned for more information about how to evaluate “Stirling” and to learn more about the benefits of an integrated security suite with third-party interoperability. Customers investing in Forefront solutions today will have an easy migration path to “Stirling.”
The Microsoft Identity and Security Team
Last week, as part of introducing the Business Ready Security strategy, we publicly released beta 2 of Forefront codename "Stirling.".
“Stirling” is an integrated security suite that delivers comprehensive protection across endpoint, application servers, and the edge. It also integrates with existing infrastructure software, such as Active Directory, System Center, and Network Access Protection, for better protection and reduced complexity.
Go here to download and evaluate with trial software or pre-configured virtual machines. Below is a video demo worth watching, too. Stay tuned for more info on "Stirling," such as the Security Assessment Sharing capabilities that enable interoperability with partner solutions.
Today the Identity and Security Division at Microsoft introduced what we call our Business Ready Security strategy. This is a fundamentally new approach to enterprise security, centered on the recognition that security solutions should help companies achieve their business goals while managing risk and empowering their people. Business Ready Security is both a destination for customers and our long term strategy to help them get there. It is based on a much broader definition of security than the status quo, which includes protection, access, management and user identity.
Below is more information, as well as several related news announcements. But, to get an immediate sense for Business Ready Security in the here and now, we suggest watching this video about a customer called Exostar. You can also read more about Business Ready Security in a Q&A with general manager Doug Leland.
There are three main tenets to Business Ready Security:
One, we are providing protection that spans the breadth of a company’s systems and data while allowing access for employees, based on their identity, from virtually anywhere. For example, today we are introducing Forefront Online Security for Exchange, the first of our Forefront Online services. Note that we have expanded the Forefront brand to cover our portfolio of identity and security solutions. Our Identity Lifecycle Manager product is now officially named Forefront Identity Manager.
Two, we aim to make security experiences and compliance management much simpler and cost-effective for both IT and businesspeople. In support of this, today we released beta 2 of Forefront “Stirling” our integrated security suite.
Three, we want to help customers integrate and extend security across the entirety of their enterprises. That means continuing to build security into Windows and our IT software solutions. It also means interoperating with non-Windows environments through partnerships and open standards Case in point: Today we are also announcing a broad group of companies supporting and extending the capabilities of Forefront “Stirling,” including Brocade, Guardium, Imperva, Juniper Networks, Kaspersky, Q1 Labs, StillSecure, Sourcefire, Inc. Tipping Point and RSA.
A number of analysts are weighing in on the topic of enterprise security, too. You can view videos and download a white paper from the Enterprise Strategy Group here.
We’ll be discussing this strategy more at next week’s RSA conference and beyond. Stay tuned for more info.
Here's a quick video from the RSA Conference last week, grabbed from the Windows Security Blog. JG Chirapurath, director for MS Identity and Security, discusses how Forefront Client Security in "Stirling," Forefront Unified Access Gateway, and Windows Cardspace (part of "Geneva") all enhance the Windows 7 security experience.
I’m Doug Leland, general manager of the Identity and Security Business Group here at Microsoft. On Thursday we unveiled our new strategy for enterprise security, called Business Ready Security, a fundamentally new approach to help companies achieve their business goals while managing risk and empowering their people.
As many know, Microsoft also has a broad vision for a safer, more trusted Internet, called “End to End Trust.” As the RSA Conference starts this week, I wanted to take the opportunity to explain how Business Ready Security connects to End to End Trust.
The first piece of End to End Trust is security and privacy fundamentals – such as implementing the Security Development Lifecycle (SDL), employing defense in depth and providing threat mitigation. Business Ready Security ties to this closely, because our identity and security solutions provide data for - and are strengthened by - our security research and response, such as the recent Security Intelligence Report and the Microsoft Malware Protection Center. They are also built with the SDL.
The second piece of End to End Trust is the creation of a trusted stack where security is rooted in hardware and where each element in the stack (hardware, software, data and people) can be authenticated in appropriate circumstances. People want to establish the “trustworthiness” of devices and systems, and the connections they make to them. This is where Business Ready Security and our technology innovations are most closely connected to the vision, with our current and future Forefront solutions, for example.
The third piece involves managing the claims relating to identity attributes. Supporting this is "Microsoft" Geneva, a new set of technologies that make it dramatically easier for companies to build secure access into software and services.
Finally, End to End Trust is about enabling a good alignment of technological, social, political and economic forces so that we make real change. A core element of Business Ready Security is working with a wide variety of partners. We have a strategic partnership with RSA, for example, and last week announced 10 companies committed to interoperability with our upcoming Forefront “Stirling” suite. We have helped to pioneer frameworks such as the Identity Metasystem and work with a number of standard bodies, including the OpenID Foundation.
I hope this is helpful information. Let us know if you have questions or comments. Thanks – see you at RSA.