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Association Update

The Professional Risk Managers' International Association taps Financial Engineering Associates as its first corporate sponsor; The Equipment Leasing Association's (ELA) annual Investor Conference will be held on March 5 at the Essex House in New York City; PC Flank has designed a free test to see how much invisibility is afforded by eight of the most popular firewall products.

The Professional Risk Managers' International Association (PRMIA) announced that Financial Engineering Associates, Inc. (FEA) will be the organization's first corporate sponsor.

FEA, a leading developer of risk management software technologies, will support PRMIA in its goal of providing a non-profit forum for the free exchange of ideas about risk management.

"The essence of PRMIA--to provide an open forum for risk managers to interact at casual and academic levels--is essential to the profession," said Laurent Birade, vice president sales and marketing at FEA. "FEA wants this idea to thrive, and we are pleased to be PRMIA's first corporate sponsor."

"As a volunteer-run non-profit, PRMIA will rely on companies like FEA to provide valuable information for members, as well as financial support for the association's infrastructure," added Jean-Martin Aussant, PRMIA development committee chair and interim board member. "With the support of industry leading companies like FEA, PRMIA aims to be an outstanding example of what a member-driven association can do for the industry."

FEA sponsorship of PRMIA will bring immediate benefits to association members. Dr. Carlos Blanco, FEA director of global support and educational services, will speak to PRMIA members and guests about risk modeling and management in the energy markets on March 7 in Chicago. Details of this free event are available on the PRMIA Web site at www.prmia.org.

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The Equipment Leasing Association's (ELA) annual Investor Conference will be held on March 5 at the Essex House in New York City.

The conference, which focuses on the investment opportunities in the $244 billion equipment leasing and finance industry, will highlight the most up-to-date industry performance numbers, trends and forecasts and provide numerous professional networking opportunities.

For more information, visit the ELA's Web site at www.elaonline.com.

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PC Flank (www.pcflank.com), a free Internet resource that helps users protect their computers from Internet viruses and trojans, has designed a test to see how much invisibility is afforded by eight of the most popular firewall products.

PC Flank's Stealth test, which is available for free to anybody who would like to test their own computer, uses five scanning techniques: TCP ping, TCP NULL scanning, TCP FIN scanning, TCP XMAS scanning, and UDP scanning. Using each technique, the test sends a packet to port number one of the system being tested. If the firewall drops the packet and does not send any response, then the computer is "stealthed". Otherwise, the firewall has failed this test.

While users can use the free Stealth test to check whatever firewall they're using, the eight PC firewalls tested were Agnitum Outpost, Look'n'Stop, Sygate, ZoneAlarm, BlackIce, Tiny Personal Firewall, AtGuard, and Norton Personal Firewall.

PC Flank's web site contains detailed information on the composition of each packet, and the results of sending each of the five packets to the eight firewalls tested. Site visitors can also perform the same test against their own computer.

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