CA: making encryption easier

Administrators will be able to choose algorithms

CA has launched new software that aims to ease tape encryption and key management for mainframe users.

CA’s BrightStor Tape Encryption tool encrypts data as it is written, to standard label z/OS tapes, without requiring changes to JCL (job control language) or applications, the company says.

“We don’t believe all data should be encrypted,” says CA product management director John Hill. “Although we rewrite directly to tape at the I/O level, there is still overhead associated with I/O encryption, and the stronger, more powerful encryption you’re applying, the more overhead there is associated with that,” Hill says.

To help address the problem, CA allows administrators to pick and choose which encryption algorithms they use for different data sets with different security needs. “You can intermingle the classifications you use, and you can even intermingle data-sets on that tape that are unencrypted,” Hill says.

For businesses that want to share data on tape with customers or partners, CA provides free decryption downloadable software for third-parties.

The software integrates with tape management tools from CA and other vendors. It also aims to automate key management from creation to deletion.

BrightStor Tape Encyrption pricing starts at US$60,000 (NZ$95,000), for encrypting up to 300 data files a month.

CA is looking into disk encryption for mainframe users, although it has no set plans at this time, Hill says.

IBM is also extending the security functionality of its mainframe to tape. Last month it added an encryption facility to its TS1120 tape drive.

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