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McAfee gets patent for restricting network access by applications

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CIOL Bureau
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BANGALORE: McAfee, Inc. today announced that the United States Patent and Trademark Office have granted the company U.S. Patent 7,069,330 entitled "Control of Interaction between Client Computer Applications and Network Resources.

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It covers various structures, programs and processes for determining whether an application is authorized to access a network or network resource. This is accomplished by utilizing a policy for facilitating the decision as to whether an application is authorized or not.

Mark McArdle, co-inventor and senior vice president for consumer products at McAfee, commented: "The technology covered under this patent is paramount to desktop security as well as other network related issues. By applying one or more policies to control the applications attempting to interact with network resources, administrators may effectively manage network application behavior, and consumers benefit from protection against rogue applications that may attempt to send sensitive data across the Internet."

According to a specific example of the patented technology, a network access request from an application may initially be detected. An application policy file or field may thus be utilized to determine if such application is authorized to access the network or network resource. In one of many possible embodiments, an access flag field may be used which contains data specifying whether the application is allowed access to the particular network entity.

To this end, access by the application may either be blocked or allowed in the appropriate manner. In another possible embodiment, determining whether the application is authorized may optionally be accomplished by comparing an identifier for the application with identifiers in an application policy file that correspond to applications authorized for installation on computers coupled to the network.

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