Allied Telesis offers active fiber monitoring for fiber security

Allied Telesis says it can now offer active fiber monitoring that can detect when someone is tampering with a fiber-optic cable and raise an alarm.

Allied Telesis says it can now offer active fiber monitoring that can detect when someone is tampering with a fiber-optic cable and raise an alarm.

The Active Fiber Monitoring feature is available on all Allied Telesis "x" Series switches and firewalls running the latest AlliedWare Plus Operating System firmware. It requires the use of DDM-capable optical modules, which Allied Telesis can supply.

While fiber-optic networks have long been seen as less susceptible to eavesdropping than copper-based links, Allied Telesis that means to intercept traffic carried over fiber is now readily available and easy to use. The company's Active Fiber Monitoring technology detects small changes in the amount of light received on a fiber link that may signal a potential breach attempt. The feature then raises an alarm regarding the situation; the link can either be shut down automatically or an operator can be alerted and manually intervene.

"The security of data on fiber links used to be taken for granted," said Graham Walker, senior product manager at Allied Telesis. "But companies need to be made aware that it's now very easy to snoop traffic on fiber undetected. Until now, the only countermeasures have been encryption, which is expensive and introduces latency, or sensitive light meters, which are complex to set up and can give false positives. Active Fiber Monitoring is an effective alternative that is easy to use and completely free."

For more information on high-speed transmission systems and suppliers, visit the Lightwave Buyer's Guide.

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