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Security

Graduating to Next-Generation Network Security Firewalls

Growth is exciting! Growth brings opportunities! Growth can also be somewhat scary when you’re goal is providing network security to three large, city campuses while also providing secure remote access to 40,000 students and over 1,500 staff.

That’s what Dave Newsham, the ITSS Service Delivery Manager at Leeds City College in the UK, was challenged with recently and we were delighted he turned to us at WatchGuard for assistance. With help from their IT partner, Epic Net the IT folks at Leeds decided to standardize on the WatchGuard Unified Threat Management (UTM) platform.

The first WatchGuard XTM 1520 replaced a Cisco firewall at the Technology Campus to deliver greater performance and control; while a second appliance has been installed at the brand new Printworks Campus, opened for the first wave of students this September. The third XTM 1520 will be installed in the Park Lane Campus this October to complete the secure multi-site network.

Our UTM firewall appliances provide safe IPSEC or SSL VPN authorized secure remote access to the College network and resources for all staff and students from multiple Apple, Windows, or Android platforms. As well as support for the full Microsoft Office suite of applications, every student has an Office 365 email account and associated online collaborative workspace.

In addition to providing full Layer 7 firewall protection and intrusion prevention, Leeds City College now has a central point of management, with the ability for policies to be easily deployed across the network, along with simplified administration and centralized logging and reporting.

With up to 14Gbs throughput, our XTM firewall appliances will be able to handle anticipated bandwidth growth over the next five years as well as the addition of increasingly complex rule sets, without loss of performance; while the clustered hardware configuration provides 100% resilience.

Dave sums up his experience in his own words:

The expansion of the College posed significant security challenges, but the WatchGuard solution has allowed us to efficiently and comprehensively implement network security for staff and students wherever they are on the network. The WatchGuard XTM firewalls are both affordable and uncomplicated to deploy and maintain, helping us ensure we meet compliance standards, and can easily scale to accommodate future growth. Deployment was pain-free, and we now have a more centrally managed, secure, and easy to administer multi-site solution and we are able to track, monitor, and review real-time access and reporting.

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