TeleCommunication Systems (TCS), an Annapolis, Md.-based provider of reliable and secure mobile communications technology, announced this week that they are launching a new cyber security suite for wireless service providers, as well as some organizations in the energy and financial sectors called Enterprise Security & Protection (ESP).
According to TCS Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer Drew Morin, the ESP portfolio consists of five "pillars" or elements, which include assess, protect, validate, monitor and train. Assessment includes not only looking at vulnerabilities in technology, but an organization’s entire security posture.
"We’re not looking at vulnerabilities from just the standpoint of what router you have and the software you’re using," he said. "We’re looking at a comprehensive viewpoint. We want to know what’s out there and what’s known about you in the market because that can make you a target."
The protection pillar involves implementing different types of protective actions, such as looking at a company’s IT policy and training senior executives to help them understand why security is important. It also includes implementing firewalls, intrusion detection and prevention systems, as well as virus and malware scanners.
The third element, validation, consists of going through and examining the ability of an organization’s system to be able to withstand a deliberate network penetration attack. Morin said this would involve looking at a company’s defensive posture to see how long it would take them to detect a data breach and so forth. A part of this element also includes assigning the customer an ESP Validation Quotient, which is a measure of the organization’s unique security posture against the current threat level.
The monitoring pillar of the ESP solution provides companies with an ongoing, subscription-style service that scans theirs systems to identify new and emerging threats, while the final part of the solution, training, provides an organization’s personnel, including IT professionals and executives, with information on policies and best practices.
Although the 25-year-old company’s background is in developing secure communication solutions for the government and military, Morin said they started a commercial security business unit about 15 years ago. According to Morin, the company is projected to generate $475 to $500 million in revenue in 2012, 55 percent of which will come from the government sector with the other 45 percent coming from the commercial market.
In addition to its TOTALCOM solution, which provides end-to-end secure communications from soldiers in the field to central command centers, Morin said that the other part of its government business is involved in cyber warfare and dealing with computer network attacks, exploits and defense.
On the commercial side, Morin said the company initially began with developing software products for wireless carriers, specifically solutions for text messaging platforms. Typically, however, TCS has "white-labeled" its commercial products which have been sold under other brands. The company then became involved in creating location technology for wireless devices, which they have grown substantially to become one of the top providers of precise location solutions. This eventually culminated in the launch of the company’s Secure the Edge portfolio, which provides multi-factor authentication and verification for mobile devices.
"We’ve been developing a plan to take our cyber warfare technology and bring that into the commercial world to enable protection of the core of the network and that is what the Enterprise Security & Protection portfolio is all about," said Morin.
Morin said that one of the things that differentiates TCS from its competitors is that understands cyber security from both an offensive and defensive point-of-view.