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Novell enhances identity management products

Networking and Linux firm says it has added new features to beta versions of Novell Identity Manager and Novell Access Manager

Novell has updated its identity- and access-management products in an attempt to help customers to more easily protect their systems.

The company announced the additions to its Novell Access Manager and Novell Identity Manager products at BrainShare, its annual user conference, in Barcelona on Monday.

The enhancements to Novell Identity Manager, which is designed to allow businesses to better organise security information and policies, include a visual designer for advanced workflow and an improved self-service application to help customers reduce the costs of provisioning.

The new functionality will be present in the next version of the product which is currently in beta. Novell has not provided a release date for the software as yet.

"Novell is delivering technology that helps customers meet today's security and compliance demands with the flexibility to adapt to new challenges as they arise," said David Litwack, Novell senior vice-president and general manager for Identity-Driven Products.

Novell customer Robert Henke, manager of infrastructure at German pharmaceutical company GEHE, said that his organisation needed an identity management suite that would cope with its complex infrastructure, because it runs many different applications.

"Novell was a perfect fit because they were the only identity management solution that could easily connect with all our systems," Henke said. "Not only do we now have better control over the access rights users have to different systems, but our users are able to have immediate access to the resources they need when they come into the company or change departments."

Updates to the beta version of the next release of Novell Access Manager include the ability to seamlessly share user credentials between business partners. Rather than simply sharing identity information between partners, Access Manager also provides a new account when one does not already exist across partner Web sites.

Jamie Lewis, chief executive officer of the analyst firm the Burton Group, said that enterprises are investing in identity and access management systems due to increased security and regulatory compliance concerns.

"Identity provides the necessary context for individual accountability and enables enforcement of policies to restrict access to private, personal and business information," Lewis said.