Enhancing security and preventing data breaches in finance

US bank implements Dell SecureWorks to reduce the costs of managing network security and prevent data breaches

Rebecca Gibson
Rebecca Gibson
By Rebecca Gibson on 08 May 2015
Enhancing security and preventing data breaches in finance

This article was first published in the Spring 2015 issue of OnWindows

As larger banks have begun to fortify their security defences, community and regional banks have faced an increased number of targeted security threats. These financial institutions need more effective and affordable security tools to protect the confidential and valuable data stored on their networks from hackers and cyber criminals. These solutions also need to be easy to manage to ensure that banks can maintain high-quality customer service and ensure regulatory compliance.

Founded in 1983, US-based Lone Star National Bank (LSNB) provides financial and banking services to consumers and business from more than 40 branches in Texas, as well as its website and mobile apps. In recent years, LSNB’s IT team struggled to find the time to manage, monitor and update the bank’s in-house intrusion detection and prevention system to ensure that it was effective against ever-evolving attacks. The team also found it difficult to generate compliance reports and compile and analyse threat intelligence.

When its previous network security system approached the end of its life, LSNB decided to implement a data security solution that required less hands-on management and provided better reporting tools. Rather than deploying an expensive in-house solution, LSNB opted for a more cost-effective managed intrusion detection and prevention security service from its longstanding partner Dell.

“Our previous security system was very expensive and managing it took time away from our role of making the bank even more successful,” says Kevin Pilgrim, executive vice president and CIO at LSNB. “We needed to direct our IT resources to support customer service so we chose Dell SecureWorks. It provides the services we need – including 24/7 monitoring, reporting and access to threat intelligence – and it’s recognised by the industry.”

Together, the bank’s IT team and Dell SecureWorks configured and tested the solution, before deciding to expand it to other departments of LSNB. “We were so happy with Dell SecureWorks, we quickly signed to have Dell SecureWorks monitor and defend our disaster recovery site too,” says Pilgrim.

Since implementing Dell SecureWorks, the bank has simplified compliance procedures, doubled reporting efficiency and significantly reduced the costs associated with protecting its networks from unauthorised access. “We saved US$60,000 in the first year and did not need to hire a full-time security expert,” explains Pilgrim.

The solution also ensures that the bank’s infrastructure remains secure if a workstation becomes infected, notifying IT staff about potential issues.

“Dell SecureWorks uses multi-layered protection, so it will shut down any malicious traffic and alert my team,” says Pilgrim. “The accuracy and speed of this solution also allows my team to be laser-focused during any clean up, rather than having to run through pages of network logs to identify the infected system.”

In addition, the solution has also enabled IT personnel to develop value-added services, such as a new robust customer relationship management system, which will help the bank to expand in the future.

“We no longer have to spend time managing and monitoring security because Dell SecureWorks takes care of it for us,” says Pilgrim. “Now, our IT employees can focus on using technology to help the bank improve its offerings and revenue, and realise its short-term and long-term goals.”

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