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Cisco ISE (Identity Services Engine) vs Pulse Policy Secure comparison

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Network Access Control (NAC)
July 2022
Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco, Aruba Networks, ForeScout and others in Network Access Control (NAC). Updated: July 2022.
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Quotes From Members
We asked business professionals to review the solutions they use.
Here are some excerpts of what they said:
Pros
"I like that Cisco ISE is easy to use.""The most valuable features are authentication, we have more granular control on the access policies for the administrators. The solution is easy to use, has a center point administration, and has a good GUI.""I have found that all of the features are valuable. It is very easy to deploy because we are able to port users directly from Active Directory (AD) and LDAP.""The most valuable feature is the integration with StealthWatch and DNA as one fabric.""From a configuration point of view, it's simple.""SGTs are valuable because they make it easy to enforce policies, instead of pushing them across all the other platforms.""The most valuable features are the ability to retrieve information about Active Directory user names, viewing the log files to see which MAC address tried to connect with the created SSIDs, portal designing for your company, hotspot tools, and creating network rules for WiFi access.""Authentication is the most valuable feature because it puts our company at another level of security."

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"Integration with other vendors is possible."

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Cons
"Cisco ISE has almost all the features we are looking for now, but sometimes the configuration, such as the conditions, is a little difficult to understand and not so easy to navigate.""It is a good product, but in order to use all of the functions of the product, you must have a good understanding of the product. You must know how to use and manage it. It is a little bit complicated to configure and manage. It must be simplified to make it easy to manage for end users. In the initial stage, we found ISE complicated for end users. It was not easy to manage it or to write authentication and authorization protocol. They must improve its management and make it easy for end users. The monitoring and reporting capabilities can be improved because end users want to quickly see what is happening in their network. There were some restrictions in working with other vendors. It should also have a better and easy integration with other vendors.""The user interface can be improved.""The interface could be more user-friendly and the ability to apply rules to MAC addresses, for example, if I wanted to allow a certain MAC address access at a particular time I cannot make this adjustment.""ISE is a little clunky. The front-end feels like it is from the 1980s.""Cisco ISE could be simplified somewhat. I would also prefer certificate-based authentication over confirmation-based authentication for all the processes. It's possible for us to do a workaround, but the process needs to be simplified.""Third-party integration is important, as well as the continuous adaptation feature which is the AIOps. It would be helpful to include the AIOps.""It would be nice if it could be configured easily by default."

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"The documentation needs to be improved. There are a lot of details that are missed which makes it confusing."

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Pricing and Cost Advice
  • "For the Avast virus scan, we pay around USD $95 per machine for five years which includes all updates and technical support."
  • "The price for Cisco ISE is high."
  • "The price can be lower, especially for subscriptions. It should be a lot cheaper to have a wide range of customers. The price should be comparable to competitive products like Forescout or Fortinet FortiNAC. Forescout is cheaper for customers looking for a cloud solution."
  • "There are other cheaper options available."
  • "The price is okay."
  • "I think licensing costs roughly $2,000 a year. ISE is more expensive than Network Access Control."
  • "I think the price is okay."
  • "Its price is probably good if you use all of its features and functionalities to protect your environment. If you use only a part of the functionality, its price is too high. It is just a question of value and the functionality you use."
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    Questions from the Community
    Top Answer: Aruba ClearPass is a Network Access Control tool that gives secure network access to multiple device types. You can adapt the policies to VPN access, wired, or wireless access. You can… more »
    Top Answer:OK, so Cisco ISE uses 802.1X to secure switchports against unauthorized access. The drawback of this is that ISE cannot secure the port if a device does not support 802.1x. Cameras, badge readers… more »
    Top Answer:Cisco ISE uses AI endpoint analytics to identify new devices based on their behavior. It will also notify you if someone plugs in with a device that is not allowed and will block it. The user… more »
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    Also Known As
    Cisco ISE
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    Pulse Secure
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    Overview

    Cisco ISE is an all-in-one solution that streamlines security policy management and reduces operating costs. Cisco ISE delivers visibility and access control over users and devices across wired, wireless, and VPN connections.

    Identity Services Engine enables enterprises to deliver secure network access to users and devices. It shares contextual data, such as threats and vulnerabilities, with integrated solutions from Cisco technology partners. You can see what is happening in your network, which applications are running, and more.

    Features of Cisco ISE

    • Centralized management helps administrators configure and manage user profile characteristics - a single pane of glass for integrated management services.
    • Contextual identity and business policy: The rule-based attribute is a driven policy model. The goal is to provide flexible access control policies.
    • Wide range of access control options, including Virtual LAN (VLAN) URL redirections, and access control lists.
    • Supplicant-less network access: You can roll out secure network access by deriving authentication from login information across application layers.
    • Guest lifecycle management streamlines the experience for implementing and customizing network access for guests.
    • Built-in AAA services: The platform uses standard RADIUS protocol for authentication, authorization, and accounting.
    • Device auditing, administration, and access control provide users with access on a need-to-know and need-to-act basis. It keeps audit trails for every change in the network.
    • Device profiling: ISE features predefined device templates for different types of endpoints.
    • Internal certificate authority: Qn easy-to-deploy single console to manage endpoints and certificates.

    Benefits of Cisco ISE

    Cisco’s holistic approach to network access security has several advantages:

    • Context-based access based on your company policies. ISE creates a complete contextual identity, including attributes such as user, time, location, threat, access type, and vulnerability. This contextual identity is used to enforce a secure access policy. Administrators can apply strict control over how and when endpoints are allowed in the network.
    • Better network visibility via an easy-to-use, simple console. In addition, visibility is improved by storing a detailed attribute history of all endpoints connected to the network.
    • Comprehensive policy enforcement. ISE sets easy and flexible access rules. These rules are controlled from a central console that enforces them across the network and security infrastructure. You can define policies that differentiate between registered users and guests. The system uses group tags that enable access control on business rules instead of IP addresses.
    • Self-service device onboarding enables the enterprise to implement a Bring-Your-Own-Device (BYOD) policy securely. Users can manage their devices according to the policies defined by IT administrators. (IT remains in charge of provisioning and posturing to comply with security policies.)
    • Consistent guest experiences: You can provide guests with different levels of access from different connections. You can customize guest portals via a cloud-delivered portal editor with dynamic visual tools.

    Support

    You can get ISE as a physical or virtual appliance. Both deployments can create ISE clusters that create scale, redundancy, and requirements.

    Licensing

    Cisco ISE has four primary licences. Evaluation for up to 100 endpoints with full platform functionality. The higher tiers are Partner, Advantage and Essential.

    Reviews from Real Users

    "The user experience of the solution is great. It's a very transparent system. according to a PeerSpot user in Cyber Security at a manufacturing company.

    Omar Z., Network & Security Engineer at an engineering company, feels that "The RADIUS Server holds the most value."

    “Whether I deploy in China, the US, South Africa, or wherever, I can get all the capabilities. It allows me to directly integrate with 365, and from a communications point of view, that is a good capability," says Rammohan M., Senior Consultant at a tech services company.

    Hassan A.,Technology Manager at Advanced Integrated Systems, says that "The most valuable feature is the integration with StealthWatch and DNA as one fabric."




    Pulse Policy Secure (PPS) is a next-gen NAC that enables organizations to gain complete visibility, understand their security posture, and enforce roles-based access and endpoint security policy for network user, guest and IoT devices. Leveraging core network, mobile and security infrastructure integrations, Pulse NAC solution can streamline endpoint compliance and remediation, BYOD onboarding and IoT security, as well as automate threat response to mitigate malware, rogue device, unauthorized access and data leakage risks.

    Pulse Policy Secure is a full featured NAC that has been designed for easy deployment, convenient scalability and rapid time-to-value. Through configuration and policy creation wizards, PPS empowers administrators to simply define, implement and enforce policy with the flexibility to enable endpoint discovery, monitoring or alerting or invoke strong enforcement. Organizations gain Zero Trust access capabilities using contextual data such as user, role, device, security posture, location and behavior. Enterprises can expand coverage employing PPS extensive management, robust interoperability, high-performance appliance capabilities.

    Offer
    Learn more about Cisco ISE (Identity Services Engine)
    Learn more about Pulse Policy Secure
    Sample Customers
    Aegean Motorway, BC Hydro, Beachbody, Bucks County Intermediate Unit , Cisco IT, Derby City Council, Global Banking Customer, Gobierno de Castilla-La Mancha, Houston Methodist, Linz AG, London Hydro, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Molina Healthcare, MST Systems, New South Wales Rural Fire Service, Reykjavik University, Wildau University
    Entegrus
    Top Industries
    REVIEWERS
    Comms Service Provider14%
    Financial Services Firm13%
    Government11%
    Manufacturing Company10%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Comms Service Provider27%
    Computer Software Company19%
    Government8%
    Financial Services Firm5%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Comms Service Provider27%
    Computer Software Company24%
    Retailer7%
    Manufacturing Company6%
    Company Size
    REVIEWERS
    Small Business28%
    Midsize Enterprise25%
    Large Enterprise47%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business19%
    Midsize Enterprise17%
    Large Enterprise65%
    VISITORS READING REVIEWS
    Small Business24%
    Midsize Enterprise19%
    Large Enterprise57%
    Buyer's Guide
    Network Access Control (NAC)
    July 2022
    Find out what your peers are saying about Cisco, Aruba Networks, ForeScout and others in Network Access Control (NAC). Updated: July 2022.
    610,229 professionals have used our research since 2012.

    Cisco ISE (Identity Services Engine) is ranked 1st in Network Access Control (NAC) with 61 reviews while Pulse Policy Secure is ranked 13th in Network Access Control (NAC) with 1 review. Cisco ISE (Identity Services Engine) is rated 8.0, while Pulse Policy Secure is rated 7.0. The top reviewer of Cisco ISE (Identity Services Engine) writes "Secures devices and has good support, but needs a better interface". On the other hand, the top reviewer of Pulse Policy Secure writes "Has documentation available and can integrate with other vendors, however it's not a straightforward setup". Cisco ISE (Identity Services Engine) is most compared with Aruba ClearPass, Forescout Platform, Fortinet FortiNAC, CyberArk Privileged Access Manager and Fortinet FortiAuthenticator, whereas Pulse Policy Secure is most compared with Aruba ClearPass, Forescout Platform and Fortinet FortiNAC.

    See our list of best Network Access Control (NAC) vendors.

    We monitor all Network Access Control (NAC) reviews to prevent fraudulent reviews and keep review quality high. We do not post reviews by company employees or direct competitors. We validate each review for authenticity via cross-reference with LinkedIn, and personal follow-up with the reviewer when necessary.