Dark Reading is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.


09:25 AM
Connect Directly

Lockdown Networks Shuts Down

NAC vendor cites slow adoption of technology, sagging economy, and lack of VC funding

Another bad omen for NAC: NAC vendor Lockdown Networks has suddenly closed its doors, citing slow adoption of the technology and lack of venture capital funding. Lockdown’s demise could signal a new wave of NAC vendor casualties, security experts say.

The Seattle-based company went public with its shutdown late yesterday via a notice posted on its Website: “Due to overall economic trends and slower than predicted adoption of Network Access Control (NAC) technology, the company was unable to raise additional sufficient venture capital to continue,” says a notice on the company’s home page.

Lockdown’s shutdown follows that of Caymas Systems, which went out of business last year, and a changeup by Vernier Networks, which reportedly is about to relaunch with a new name and non-NAC strategy.

Lockdown’s VC-backed position as a NAC-only vendor didn’t help its cause: “They were a pure-play NAC vendor, and NAC did not set the world on fire as the VCs anticipated,” says Thomas Ptacek, principal with Matasano Security.

“Lockdown had a real product and a decent team. But no VC looked at the market and said there was money to be made in it,” says Ptacek, who expects other NAC vendors to follow with more bad news.

Bottom line: Enterprises just haven’t adopted NAC despite all of the hype surrounding the technology. Paul Roberts, senior analyst for enterprise security with The 451 Group, says pure-play NAC vendors are running out of the venture capital that has basically kept them alive thus far.

“We had noted some troubling signs at Lockdown in recent months -- a shrinking headcount and an unsettling number of open job positions on their engineering team,” Roberts says. “Their most recent product updates seem targeted squarely at the education vertical, suggesting that they were having trouble bridging the gap to the larger and more lucrative enterprise space.”

Alan Shimmel, chief strategy officer for StillSecure, expects more NAC vendors to face the music soon, if they aren’t as diversified as StillSecure and other firms, he says. “There are some NAC vendors who are going to find it hard to raise more money, especially because of the economy. If they don’t have a flexible enough offering and strategy, they will find themselves frozen out of the market,” he says. “I wouldn’t be surprised if a handful of other NAC vendors find it difficult to compete.”

But Shimmel says StillSecure is making money with its NAC product, both with customers such as the Department of Defense and also with its OEM and reseller arrangements with companies such as Extreme Networks and Foundry Networks. “We are seeing more and more NAC projects,” he says. StillSecure isn’t just pure NAC company like Lockdown was, he says, because it also sells IDS/IPS and vulnerability management products.

Ptacek, meanwhile, says none of Matasano’s enterprise customers are seriously considering NAC. “NAC has been on a down trend for a year and a half and none of my enterprise customers are really thinking about doing it -- except for one, who is looking into wireless NAC as a cost-cutting measure,” he says.

Lockdown is also trying to sell off its Enforcer IP NAC product, which the company had retooled from a vulnerability assessment product into its NAC offering.

Have a comment on this story? Please click "Discuss" below. If you'd like to contact Dark Reading's editors directly, send us a message.

  • Lockdown Networks Inc.
  • StillSecure
  • Matasano Security LLC
  • The 451 Group

    Kelly Jackson Higgins is the Executive Editor of Dark Reading. She is an award-winning veteran technology and business journalist with more than two decades of experience in reporting and editing for various publications, including Network Computing, Secure Enterprise ... View Full Bio

    Comment  | 
    Print  | 
    More Insights
  • Comments
    Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
    Why Cyber-Risk Is a C-Suite Issue
    Marc Wilczek, Digital Strategist & CIO Advisor,  11/12/2019
    DevSecOps: The Answer to the Cloud Security Skills Gap
    Lamont Orange, Chief Information Security Officer at Netskope,  11/15/2019
    Attackers' Costs Increasing as Businesses Focus on Security
    Robert Lemos, Contributing Writer,  11/15/2019
    Register for Dark Reading Newsletters
    White Papers
    Cartoon Contest
    Current Issue
    Navigating the Deluge of Security Data
    In this Tech Digest, Dark Reading shares the experiences of some top security practitioners as they navigate volumes of security data. We examine some examples of how enterprises can cull this data to find the clues they need.
    Flash Poll
    Rethinking Enterprise Data Defense
    Rethinking Enterprise Data Defense
    Frustrated with recurring intrusions and breaches, cybersecurity professionals are questioning some of the industrys conventional wisdom. Heres a look at what theyre thinking about.
    Twitter Feed
    Dark Reading - Bug Report
    Bug Report
    Enterprise Vulnerabilities
    From DHS/US-CERT's National Vulnerability Database
    PUBLISHED: 2019-11-18
    A memory leak in the rsi_send_beacon() function in drivers/net/wireless/rsi/rsi_91x_mgmt.c in the Linux kernel through 5.3.11 allows attackers to cause a denial of service (memory consumption) by triggering rsi_prepare_beacon() failures, aka CID-d563131ef23c.
    PUBLISHED: 2019-11-18
    A memory leak in the predicate_parse() function in kernel/trace/trace_events_filter.c in the Linux kernel through 5.3.11 allows attackers to cause a denial of service (memory consumption), aka CID-96c5c6e6a5b6.
    PUBLISHED: 2019-11-18
    Memory leaks in drivers/net/wireless/ath/ath9k/htc_hst.c in the Linux kernel through 5.3.11 allow attackers to cause a denial of service (memory consumption) by triggering wait_for_completion_timeout() failures. This affects the htc_config_pipe_credits() function, the htc_setup_complete() function, ...
    PUBLISHED: 2019-11-18
    A memory leak in the ath9k_wmi_cmd() function in drivers/net/wireless/ath/ath9k/wmi.c in the Linux kernel through 5.3.11 allows attackers to cause a denial of service (memory consumption), aka CID-728c1e2a05e4.
    PUBLISHED: 2019-11-18
    A memory leak in the ca8210_probe() function in drivers/net/ieee802154/ca8210.c in the Linux kernel before 5.3.8 allows attackers to cause a denial of service (memory consumption) by triggering ca8210_get_platform_data() failures, aka CID-6402939ec86e.