7 heavily-hyped information security products, vendors that hit the scrap heap

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Hitting the heap

Information security vendors release new products with all the hope of parents sending their child out into the world or a mother bird forcing her babies out of the nest. Unfortunately, as everywhere else in nature, some security technologies fall to the ground and go splat! Here are seven security-related offerings whose trajectories fell off sharply just before the bitter end.

The AirGAP System

The AirGAP System

SpearHead Technologies Ltd developed the AirGAP System, a firewall based on hardware isolation, says Shlomo Touboul, CEO, Illusive Networks, an agentless deception-based cyber security company. SpearHead was still marketing the product as of 2000 and received $24 million in funding that year. The AirGAP product failed because it was built on a false premise and there were cheaper and more feasible alternatives to accomplish the same thing.

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Kasten Chase/Thinkstock

Kasten Chase storage security vendor

One time modem security vendor turned storage security company Kasten Chase called it quits in 2006, filing for bankruptcy. Though the Toronto-based enterprise had been a huge success in the modem security arena with a stock price of $19.85 on the Toronto Stock Exchange in 2000, the transition to storage protection together with the sloth with which the storage industry grew drove its sales down and its losses up.

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Lockdown Networks

NAC provider Lockdown Networks

Founded in 2001, Lockdown Networks closed its doors in 2008, selling its business to McAfee that year. NAC was a hard endpoint pill for employees to swallow, with workforces complaining about impeded device performance. The NAC market suffered along with the rest that year due to the economic crisis.

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Caymas Systems

NAC vendor Caymas Systems

In 2007, NAC firm Caymas Systems said goodbye even though it had achieved Cisco Compatible Certification only two years prior. Funding challenges drove Caymas to sell out to Citrix.

comcast center philadelphia85

Comcast Secure Backup and Share

When a company with the clout of Comcast opens a secure backup and file sharing service, you expect it to soar. Yet three years after its debut in partnership with Mozy in 2010, the Secure Backup and Share service closed. Though Comcast wouldn’t clarify reasons, some speculate that a change of focus by Mozy left Comcast out of a contract.  

Clear biometrics-based airport security line fast tracker
Transportation Security Administration

Clear biometrics-based airport security line fast tracker

In 2009, Clear, the biometric card company that aimed to get consumers through airport security lines more quickly closed leaving some 200,000 members without service or refunds. Though the company claimed it ran out of cash, they assured customers that their biometric and PII data was safe and that they would soon delete it.

HP’s Upline backup service

HP’s Upline backup service

HP’s Upline backup service survived for about a year from 2008 to 2009. It closed due to serious downtime issues and a lack of market uptake.