Passlogix: One Authenticator To Rule Them All

Passlogix, an enterprise software company focused on simplifying access to company resources, is announcing an authentication product which will allow users to log on to Windows with any type of identification device–including national ID badges, access cards, one-time password tokens, and biometrics. The product, v-GO Universal Authentication Manager, utilizes the customers’ existing infrastructure while also leveraging corporate directories, thus lowering the total cost of ownership from an average of $150 per user to $15.

Passlogix aims to be the last strong authentication product that companies will need to buy as their product can evolve based on their customers’ needs. They hope to achieve this goal by providing an open architecture whereby any device from a multitude of manufacturers can be used for Windows login, rather than forcing a company to choose a singular method which is often times proprietary. By employing this type of architecture, clients are able to move to a new authentication vendor, use physical access devices already being utilized for other purposes, and use multiple types of authentication methods across a company’s network. For example, a company could use pre-existing building access cards (which only allow entrance to those who work in that building) to log in at one branch, while others from the same company, but at a different office, can use a completely different proprietary access card to log in from their location. Similarly, those in the second branch could use an entirely different mode of authentication, such as biometrics, to securely log in. This feature is especially useful for companies who have varying levels of access privileges.

By allowing organizations to use authentication devices which are already deployed, Passlogix removes the need for additional investment in secure Windows logon. Those who use this product will never have to remember their password again, as it is stored on the authentication device. Furthermore, dedicated servers typically needed for secure network access are not needed, which again lowers the total cost of ownership, and brings down any potential scalability barriers.

Strong authentication solutions for Windows are also more secure than the use of a password, which can be compromised in any number of ways, as physical access of the authenticator is needed. If an employee loses, or his means of authentication is stolen, Passlogix can remotely shut off the authenticator, thus blocking access to any files or information on an organization’s network. Additionally, they can report on the use of access of the authenticator to see what, if anything, has been jeopardized.

Passlogix is in a unique situation given that most of their competitors are also those whose products they support. Companies such as HID Global and DigitalPersona provide strong authentication tools which can be integrated into Passlogix’ infrastructure.

v-GO Universal Authentication Manager is priced at $15 per user and carries a yearly 20 percent fee for support and maintenance.

Passlogix was founded in 1996 and has raised approximately $20 million in venture capital. Their latest round of funding was for $11.5 million in 2002 and was led by Hanseatic Americas. The company has sold 21M user licenses of their various products in 140 countries.