The recent post on ‘What’s holding back NAC’ elicited some great replies, both public and private. One comment, from Todd over at Napera brought up a great point regarding the ‘origins’ of NAC as we know it.

While all the innovative start-ups were working steadily on a new generation of security solutions, a majority of the industry’s big dogs jumped on the NACwagon, riding the buzzwords by simply re-branding a current technology as NAC.

And, that’s the culprit we’ll find if we dig to the root of our ‘Terminology Twists’ as I called them; a variety of words, definitions and catch-phrases from various NAC vendors that are incongruous with one another.

For the most part, our remote access vendors, switch and wireless vendors and firewall vendors (am I missing anyone?) all took their product, made a few cosmetic changes, a few verbiage updates and slapped a ‘NAC Sticker’ on the front.

Hence the Polymorphic Paradigm…  “a philosophical and theoretical framework”…  with multiple forms of a single product.

I suppose I’m fine with it… as long as it all works. But I would certainly prefer a world where we have some ‘truth in terminology’ so our customers can easily identify what products, technologies and features they’re actually getting. Until then- just check under the NAC Sticker and see what technology is behind it, and whether that will suit your needs (or not).

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Author, speaker, and recognized authority on network and wireless security architectures, Jennifer (JJ) Minella helps organizations solve technical problems and align teams.

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