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Video Surveillance Firm Turns to Sentinel HASP When Security is on the LineDecember 13, 2012
By Mae Kowalke, TMCnet Contributor
It could have been a scene in the heist film, Ocean’s Eleven. A Las Vegas video surveillance company’s security is breached and it has less than 48 hours to solve the problem. Everything is on the line.
This was no movie, however. It involved the situation video security provider Virtual Surveillance recently faced when it discovered that someone had compromised their security system and was actively attempting to reverse-engineer the company’s hardware and software offerings.
Compromised security was not an option for Virtual Surveillance, one of only six companies in the world licensed to sell surveillance equipment to Las Vegas and Washington State casinos, according to a recent SafeNet case study. Its intelligent video surveillance program contains software that analyzes video in real-time and creates alerts that address security threats before they escalate. Their clients require the highest level of security and confidentiality, so the Virtual Surveillance security solution must be secure.
Working against the clock, Virtual Surveillance realized it did not have the time to modify its homegrown software protection scheme to beef up protection and thwart the hackers in time. So it turned to security provider SafeNet (News - Alert) and its Sentinel HASP solution.
Due to the complexity of effective video surveillance, the Virtual Surveillance software is spread across several applications and dependent on an ASP .Net web service for sharing media such as video and snapshots. SafeNet used Sentinel HASP keys to protect the web service, creating a single point of failure that would render the system useless if security was compromised. It accomplished this by having the web server perform real-time checks to the HASP key during each system call and returning an error to the client application if the key was not present.
The SafeNet support team showed Virtual Surveillance how to easily modify their C# code to accommodate the HASP key solution, and shipped the HASP keys to Virtual Surveillance in Dallas for implementing the protection code, and then sent along with the updated software product to customers in Las Vegas in less than 48 hours. The crisis was averted.
“The keys themselves,” noted Virtual Surveillance CTO Eric Burcham, “cost a thousand percent less than the time and effort we would have spent coding our own equally formidable protection, and manually generating and keeping track of activation keys for our customers.” He said the total cost of saving his company’s multi-million dollar development effort from a known threat was less than $300, including shipping.
In the process, Virtual Surveillance also gained the added flexibility of allowing their software to be moved to different machines without the threat of piracy. Whereas previously the software anti-theft protection could be surmounted by spoofing the MAC address of a licensed computer, the HASP key now made it much easier to transfer software to other computers legally and securely.
“By enabling us to protect our software against piracy and reverse-engineering, HASP has provided us with more time for solving our customer’s problems, best-in-class value and priceless peace of mind,” said Burcham.
So unlike the movies, this time Las Vegas and its security solutions provider came away unscathed.
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Edited by Peter Bernstein
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- White paper: Best Practices for Transitioning On-Premise Software Business to the Cloud
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- Report: Frost & Sullivan Global Software License Management Market Report 2011
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