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Novell iChain 2.0 Now Available

Novell Cool Solutions: Feature

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Posted: 23 Oct 2001

Version: iChain 2.0

Heads Up: iChain 2.0 is now shipping. iChain allows organizations to secure their Web environments, control user access to those environments and provide users single sign-on to virtually all Web-based applications and content. As a key component of Novell's Access Management security solutions, iChain simplifies enterprise complexity by creating a security infrastructure that is easily extended to all Net applications, systems, networks and platforms. The software also minimizes corporate risk and exposure by securing virtual organizations that span employees, customers, partners and suppliers.

In the Net economy, organizations are forced to strike a delicate balance between accelerating their transformation to eBusiness while still securing their networks and data. This balance is driving the rapid adoption of security services, a market which analyst firm IDC expects to reach $21 billion by 2005. Today Novell is helping companies secure their eBusiness environments by delivering Access Management solutions, which provide fine-grained access to platforms, applications and data for all types of users. iChain plays a pivotal role in these solutions by providing identity-based Web security services that control access to application and network resources across technical and organizational boundaries, as one Net.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota (BCBSND) is the largest healthcare provider in the state of North Dakota, insuring nearly 400,000 members. To better serve those members, its employees and healthcare industry partners, and to relax the load on a sometimes-overwhelmed call center, BCBSND developed several Web-based applications, offering users quick and convenient access to healthcare information. In doing so, however, the company faced the added challenge of complying with new security and privacy regulations outlined in the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). BCBSND turned to Novell software and services to address that challenge.

"With a security infrastructure based on iChain and eDirectory, we are able to control user access to sensitive data and resources on the Web based on the user's identity," said Troy Aswege, assistant vice president of IS with Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Dakota. "For example, iChain grants a healthcare industry partner access to a different set of resources than a plan member, all based on the individual's identity and profile in eDirectory. Further, the Novell solution gives us the flexibility to easily adapt our security infrastructure as our eBusiness capabilities grow or as government security standards change."

This latest version of iChain offers customers a number of new features and enhancements:

  • XML-based Form Fill -- Using XML, iChain can now provide single sign-on to virtually all Web-based applications and data, without requiring customized programming or plug-ins.
  • Advanced Authentication -- iChain now gives customers the option of adding token-based authentication from leading vendors such as ActivCard, RSA Security and Vasco to their Web-based systems, in addition to standard username/password, smart cards and certificate-based methods currently available.
  • Improved management -- The addition of several new management wizards has reduced iChain's basic installation time from more than a day to as little as two hours.
  • Increased scalability -- Customers can now link a virtually unlimited number of iChain servers together to balance the load created by potentially millions of authentication requests while still giving an uninterrupted end-user experience.
  • Enhanced performance -- iChain is now significantly faster at processing user authentication requests, allowing those users to quickly connect to Web resources.
  • "Goliath Networks has nothing but praise for Novell's iChain Web security software. We're currently involved in a number of iChain deployments and are just now starting to realize the revenue potential this product brings to our business," said Angela Lehmann, director of Strategic Alliances with Goliath Networks, a Novell Platinum Partner based in Madison, Wis. "iChain's tight integration with eDirectory is truly an advantage over all other competitors. We look forward to continued success with Novell and its Net services solutions."
  • "Novell iChain's architecture allows organizations to get more -- faster -- from their investments in eBusiness applications," said Paul Smart, vice president and general manager of Novell's Net Directory business. "This architecture enables companies to create a single point of administration for all their Web applications, without the need to install code on each individual Web server. As a result, they can securely deploy eBusiness applications more quickly and spend their time building eBusiness relationships instead of maintaining a complex Web infrastructure."

Novell iChain 2.0 is available today for $10 per user. The product is available from Novell channel partners, Novell Consultant and System Integrator partners or directly from Novell by calling (888) 321-4272.

Novell iChain 2.0 Advanced Technical Training is available for customers and partners interested in learning to implement, administer and optimize an iChain environment. The course includes two days of intense, hands-on training. For more details or registration, go to or call (800) 228-7613. For information about custom training, go to

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