Athena Rolls Out PathFinder For Tracing Virtual Packets

Network mapping tool shows how access is controlled using predictive analysis

February 11, 2011

4 Min Read


Monday, February 7, 2011 -- Chicago IL -- Athena Security, makers of the advanced security analytics solution, Athena FirePAC, unveils a new product for tracing virtual packets across layer 3 network security devices. This new network mapping tool shows how access is controlled using predictive analysis derived from configuration data. Athena's PathFinder gives line engineers the most precise way to not only find all the possible paths where data can travel, but also isolate the root cause for the traffic’s behavior.

Using the PathFinder is like injecting millions of packets into the network to test what is reachable, except it does nothing to disturb a production environment, and instead of trying ad-hoc testing in hopes of landing the correct answer, it highlights the exact rules to change. Until now, engineers have had few choices such as heavy weight SIEM and Security Risk Management products to use for this purpose, even though these products are not well suited for the focused task of troubleshooting rules. PathFinder makes effective troubleshooting the top priority by providing an interactive map that can drill down policies extremely well.

"The benefit of focused functionality is not only dramatically better ease of use, but also far better affordability," said Anjali Gurnani, VP Product Marketing. "It also offers our customers flexibility to define their own use cases that we evolve and enhance into other focused products. We value using an organic product development approach that is completely customer driven. For example we are learning from our customers that the packet tracing capability in PathFinder is also a very useful way to determine the devices and rules involved in executing change requests."

PathFinder also has a number of advantages for bridging communication between network operations and security groups. While network connections have typically been documented using Visio diagrams, most tools are focused on layer 2 and are not living breathing representations of access policy. They might represent slices of the network and look completely different depending on whose perspective is used to describe the network model. Athena's PathFinder is automatically updated, interactive and can be used to generate reports that detail how the network has been configured to behave.

Decisions involving network re-architecting, consolidating firewalls, moving around applications or migrating data centers are all cases where PathFinder as a modeling and visualization tool can play a significant role. The key advantage is that modeling is not limited to visualizing network nodes and connections. This product eliminates the testing cycles required to validate policy changes (pre and post production) to save networking groups significant time and money.

Athena PathFinder is a desktop application that can be scheduled for automated updates, and it needs only the configuration data from the devices that the user chooses to include on the map. For example, the map can be designed to represent access policy through firewalls only if required. Alternatively, it can also work for a broader view of the network by accommodating any element on the graphical diagram for visual completeness.

The PathFinder is a new, more powerful way to answer detailed operational questions about access policy. Line engineers will find it more convenient than traditional approaches because PathFinder does not require:

Installing any appliances

Injecting any packets into the network

Being limited to the rear view of your traffic data

Athena will release the PathFinder on Febuary 28th and will be showcasing it beforehand to press and partners at RSA 2011. To schedule a demo, please contact Anjali Gurnani, VP Product Marketing at [email protected].

About Athena: In a world where controlling technology costs are paramount, Athena is the only solution provider to offer enterprise firewall analytics and remediation in a collection of focused tools. Customers configure Athena FirePAC towards requirements that are specifically operations, security or compliance-oriented and pay only for what is needed. With a global customer base of several hundred Banking, Insurance, Retail, Healthcare, Energy, Utilities and US Federal Sector enterprises and thousands of users across a suite of products, Athena is constantly innovating the range of solutions it offers to drive more intelligent firewall and network management. From data center migration to policy optimization, Athena aims to be the most affordable and flexible choice for network and security engineers. For more information see

Keep up with the latest cybersecurity threats, newly discovered vulnerabilities, data breach information, and emerging trends. Delivered daily or weekly right to your email inbox.

You May Also Like

More Insights