GTE Internetworking First Tier 1 ISP To Launch Managed Firewall and Internet Access Service Bundle for Small- to Medium-sized Businesses

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Smaller businesses requiring secure, reliable Internet access and desiring a single source for ordering, provisioning, billing and technical support can now get these services quickly and easily from GTE Internetworking, a division of GTE Corporation. The Tier 1 ISP today announced the availability of Secure BizConnectSM, a turnkey Internet access and managed security solution designed specifically for small- to medium-sized businesses and branch offices of larger corporations.

GTE Internetworking integrated its GTE Security AdvantageSM managed firewall service with its BizConnect dedicated Internet access to create a service bundle that provides 24 x 7 proactive network security monitoring and guaranteed Internet performance and availability. Backed by the connectivity and security experts at GTE Internetworking, Secure BizConnect offers smaller businesses a complete business-to-business service solution to support secure access to the Internet. Secure BizConnect helps customers address the network security concerns associated with connecting to the Internet, while combining a choice of fully managed connectivity speeds to meet current and future bandwidth requirements. The result is a one-stop-shopping, provisioning, support and billing solution for highly flexible and cost-effective Internet access and managed security.

Secure BizConnect delivers fully managed, dedicated Internet access (from 128K up to T1) and an appliance-based managed firewall service. It eliminates the pricing, packaging, and technology hurdles that have made this type of service difficult to bring together for many companies, and GTE backs the solution with service level agreements (SLAs) for connectivity uptime and response time to customer requested changes. The SLAs cover the actual Internet connection through GTE's IP-based network backbone, the local loop, the Internet equipment at the customer's premises and the amount of time GTE will take to install and update it.

"Working with GTE Internetworking is like having a silent employee and online expert on our staff," said Thomas Gillen, IS director, DataStoreMedia Inc. "Secure BizConnect will provide our company with the reliable Internet access our business depends on while allowing us to put aside the time, worry and expense associated with managing our own network security."

According to a 1999 Yankee Group survey of small- to medium-sized businesses regarding "Internet Concerns," the top two issues indicated were security and the cost of Internet access. To meet these requirements, Secure BizConnect combines a cost-effective, fully managed security and Internet access service starting at less than $2 per hour.

"It's unreasonable to expect small- to medium-sized businesses to have the budget and expertise required to manage the security of their networks," said Matthew Kovar, senior security analyst at The Yankee Group. "Businesses are looking to Internet service providers to deliver service combinations they can rely on that guarantee Internet access and the piece of mind that comes with knowing that security experts are monitoring the integrity of their networks 24x7."

The Business Benefits of Secure BizConnect

    GTE Secure BizConnect includes:

  • 24 x 7 management and proactive monitoring of the customer's Internet connection

  • Firewall hardware and software from WatchGuard Technologies and Cisco Systems

  • A single, integrated source for ordering, provisioning, support and billing

  • Hardware and software management and maintenance

  • Implementation of GTE's Security Incident Rapid Response (SIRR) policies and procedures which are immediately enacted in the event of a security incident

  • Flexible service plan options that offer choices of service levels required to meet security policy management and firewall configuration needs

  • Monthly security incident reports and Web-based bandwidth utilization and performance reporting tools that allow customers to generate and view their own reports

  • A site-to-site Virtual Private Network (VPN) capability that allows customers to set up private, secure tunnels over the Internet, eliminating the need for costly leased lines.
  • Pricing

    GTE offers flexible service plan options to meet individual customer requirements. Pricing for Secure BizConnect services starts at $1,375/month plus a one-time set-up fee. GTE Secure BizConnect is available immediately in the continental United States through all GTE sales channels.

    About GTE Internetworking and GTE Corp.

    GTE Internetworking, a unit of GTE Corporation (NYSE:GTE), offers customers, from consumers to Fortune 500 companies, a full spectrum of integrated Internet services using IP networking technologies. GTE Internetworking delivers complete network solutions, including dial-up and dedicated Internet access, high-performance Web hosting, virtual private networks (VPNs), managed Internet security, network management, systems integration, and Web-based application development for integrating the Internet into business operations. GTE is one of the world's largest telecommunications companies and a leading provider of integrated voice, video and data services. Additional information about GTE Internetworking can be found on the Internet at http://www.bbn.com.

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