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Pertino Bolsters Virtual Networking Security

Mitch Wagner
4/9/2015
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You've heard of software-as-a-service? How about network-as-a-service? Pertino allows businesses to set up networks between locations and cloud services as easily as they can now spin up compute sessions on Amazon.

"Just as Amazon made computing, we wanted a similar model for networking," says Pertino product VP Bharath Rangarajan. "Why can't people build networks where the switch appliance is running on the cloud?"

Pertino is designed for the new world where workloads are moving to the cloud and users depend on mobile devices.

Its virtual switch in the cloud connects virtual machines on Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN), Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) and any public or private cloud.

After a limited release in 2013, Pertino offered its service to the public last year, initially focused on SMBs to establish some early sales without the long sales cycle of larger enterprise. Pertino broadened its focus and now targets mid-sized to large enterprises with 1,000 employees or more. (See Pertino Delivers SDN-Powered Cloud.)

Pertino has about 5,000 production networks with more than 300 customers in production in 80 countries.

The company has about 50 employees, and $28 million in funding from two rounds involving Norwest Venture Partners , Lightspeed Venture Partners and Icon Ventures.

Pertino plans Thursday to announce new capabilities designed to allow businesses to provide additional security for their networks. The SDN security foundation is designed to secure weak authentication, bolster trust and network security policies, and improve on-the-wire security.

First, Pertino takes measures to help its customers hide from attackers. The service obfuscates physical network addresses for networks connecting from customer data centers to the cloud. Also, Pertino doesn't require customers to open a firewall port, making the service effectively DDOS proof.

Second, Pertino is introducing microsegmentation, to allow enterprise customers to quarantine machines on any basis, not just geographic location and workgroups. For example, customers can spin up multiple virtual networks for developers and a production stack, or even make a virtual network so small that it contains only two machines. That microsegmentation isolates attacks from the larger network.

The third new security element is connection-level security, to make it easy for users to set up PKI-enabled secure connections, as well as creating ephemeral tokens to permit communication between cloud workloads. Even if the token is compromised, no other machines can connect using it.


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And Pertino is enhancing Active Directory support, to allow enterprises to use AD for security policies and groups for remote users as well as LAN users, pushing out group and DNS policies to remote devices in realtime.

Additionally, Pertino recently added support for Docker in addition to VMs, which allowed the company to enter into a strategic partnership with Dell Technologies (Nasdaq: DELL)

Pertino also recently entered into a strategic relationship with SoftBank, giving Pertino access to 7,000 resellers and hundreds of thousands of small and midsized businesses in Japan. (See Pertino Cracks Japan Market With Softbank.)

— Mitch Wagner, Circle me on Google+ Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profileFollow me on Facebook, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading. Got a tip about SDN or NFV? Send it to wagner@lightreading.com.

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