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Wright State Installs Mirage NAC System to Secure Network for Gaming Consoles

Wright State University in Dayton, OH, with 17,000 students, has deployed a network access control system from Mirage Networks to manage network-attached devices on campus, including gaming systems.

Gaming consoles lack standard computer operating systems and user interfaces but have IP addresses. Students with these consoles connect them to the Internet via the school's network. With the new software, Wright has optimized its network policies to allow students to register their gaming systems and exempt them from the need to authenticate, while still monitoring the devices for malicious or out-of-policy behavior. Network administrators also have the ability to match an IP address to a specific student, so if a gaming console or other unmanaged device is out-of-policy, the IT department can pinpoint and contact the owner.

"The challenge we are faced with is that our students are now bringing multiple and varied devices with IP addresses onto the campus network," said Larry Fox, associate director of networks. "Whether it is a personal computer or gaming console device, the Mirage solution allows us to accommodate each endpoint on the campus network while still protecting our infrastructure from threats and policy violations."

Mirage's network access control software performs risk assessment on all endpoints. As soon as a device attempts to gain access to the network, the application identifies the endpoint and runs a policy check to determine if the device is infected and whether it complies with the security policies in the network segment that it is trying to join. To verify the identity of users and ensure that uninvited devices don't gain network access, Mirage authenticates users by checking common credential sources, including RADIUS and Active Directory.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a former senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal, Campus Technology and Spaces4Learning.

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