Intel Introduces PCIe NetSec Accelerator for Network Security

OEMs Get Reference Design

Intel released a reference design for the NetSec Accelerator at the RSA conference, a PCIe card for network security.

The reference design that will be available to OEMs is an x86 compute node PCIe card that combines an Intel Atom processor, an Intel Ethernet E810 network interface, and up to 32 GB of memory.

According to Intel, the NetSec Accelerator is designed to enable a “SASE (Secure Access Service Edge) model, a combination of software-defined security and wide area network (WAN) functions implemented as a native cloud service”. This includes Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB), Secure Web Gateway (SWG), Data Loss Prevention (DLP), and firewall features.

While these features typically run on a standard server as virtualized or containerized services, Intel NetSec Accelerator offers an alternative approach by reducing the infrastructure footprint and placing a network security server on a PCIe plug-in card.

Intel also says it will allow developers to run existing security software (developed for Intel-based systems) “right out of the box.” On the other hand, host servers usually have multiple PCIe slots, so running a NetSec Accelerator for SASE service on the same server definitely makes things easier.

Intel won’t launch the device but rather offer it to OEMs as a reference design, so it’ll be interesting to see which of those OEMs come up with such an offer, and Intel says F5 and Silicom could be the first vendors to come. at the market.

“This reference design allows a PCIe expansion card to deliver server capabilities in a small, power-efficient package. Vendors can integrate SASE functions into this board to maximize the capabilities of their edge server infrastructure,” Intel said. VP of Network and Edge Bob Ghaffari in a blog post.

Kevin M. Risinger