When clients or other representatives visit companies and wish to gain access to the company's WLAN, the IT department usually has to set up a user account and provide either Internet-only access or risk total access to the company's network. It is not typically an easy, quick or painless process.

However, a 6-year-old wireless security and management company with customers such as Harvard and Toyota says it has an answer. Bluesocket has enhanced its line of BlueSecure Controllers to ease guest services for corporate wireless networks. Bluesocket customers now will be able to permit corporate visitors authenticated and behavior-controlled access to their networks through the policy enforcement of Enhanced Guest Services.

As part of the Enhanced Guest Services, Bluesocket is introducing key advancements in providing secure WLAN access for guests on a network:

  • Reception Console—A 1-click interface allows a security guard or receptionist to provide a guest with a randomized user name and password required for network log-in, which is valid only for a limited amount of time.
  • Batch Mode—This functionality allows the company to create a group of pre-printed guest accounts that can be handed out by a security guard or receptionist upon entry into a building. As with the Reception Console, these pre-set guest accounts, with randomized user names and passwords, provide certain access to the network, creating a "trusted guest."
  • Delayed Account Activation—Accounts can be set to be active once the first log-in occurs. For example, a guest can be given a 24-hour account and it only becomes active once that person first uses the password.
  • Variable Account Termination—An account can be terminated at a certain point in the future. For example, a guest might no longer have access after 5 p.m. when the company closes.