No Connections Unless You're Secure
Security of users at WiFi hotspots is always a big issue. The various business focused hotspot providers and aggregators have been trying to address the issue, often by including the option of a VPN of some sort. However, it sounds like iPass is going one step further. They’re upgrading their software to enforce strict security. The article isn’t entirely clear on how they do this, but it says that the new software will make sure that the user’s laptop or PDA has up-to-date firewalls, virus checkers and other such programs before it will allow them to connect. If these other applications are out of date, then the user is refused a connection. The article points out that this is a bit harsh (and it makes you wonder how the user can update their software if they can’t connect), but it also shows how the ISPs (or, in this case, the aggregators) are taking a much more proactive view of security these days. They’re no longer waiting for customers to screw up their own security and have to come in and try to provide fixes. It will be interesting to see if other providers offer something similar.