Burnaby company advances productivity and security with FortiSASE

The globally recognized leader shares how FortiSASE has led to a 'major win'

ZEMA Global Data Corporation, a Burnaby-based and globally recognized leader in data software development and professional services, has gained notice with a few high-profile award wins related to data management and innovation.

The ZEMA platform provides breakthrough data integration, management, and analytics for data-driven organizations. It integrates data from over 135 third-party downstream financial, business intelligence, modelling, risk, and trade systems to service its global client base.

As a provider of business-critical data and insights, ensuring the ZEMA platform is always available and secure is a significant priority. Another company with a significant Burnaby footprint that helps ZEMA secure its platform: Fortinet.

Fortinet is a global leader operating at the intersection of networking and security, with extensive research and development facilities in the Burnaby area. ZEMA contacted Fortinet’s cloud consulting services for help determining the right products, services, and implementation approaches to meet their business goals.

For securing ZEMA’s cloud operations, they turned to FortiSASE, which provides secure web, cloud, and application access. Offering enterprise-grade cybersecurity, FortiSASE allows clients to apply consistent security policies for remote off-net endpoints and users with secure dynamic routing.

Addressing productivity

With FortiSASE, ZEMA keeps its employees productive with reliable and secure access to data and applications, regardless of location. Previously, ZEMA used the FortiGate next-generation firewall as its primary firewall and first line of defence.

Implementing FortiSASE was simple and improved performance for ZEMA’s internal teams as well as clients. FortiSASE has delivered enhanced security and reliability across all ZEMA's VPN connections, as demonstrated by a 90 per cent reduction in performance-related tickets, increased availability of data centre infrastructure, and greater traffic control across the entire network environment.

Enhancing security posture

Given that the ZEMA platform and service are delivered via the cloud, cybersecurity is critical. Distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks and ransomware pose the greatest threat to the company's infrastructure. ZEMA is also focused on preventing phishing attempts, a specific risk for the company, given that over 90 per cent of ZEMA employees work remotely, which expands the potential for data breaches.

ZEMA was familiar with SASE solutions, but its existing solution was limiting and overly reliant on a VPN designed for a specific firewall. The company needed a solution that enabled secure and dynamic routing to protect protocols while ensuring the integrity and confidentiality of routing information. 

Fortinet Cloud Consulting Services supported ZEMA by deploying FortiSASE in four phases. First, ZEMA and Fortinet worked together to define objectives, expectations, and the project's scope before moving on to requirements gathering. In the third phase, Fortinet's consulting team provisioned FortiSASE, connecting it to ZEMA's on-premises SD-WAN network, powered by FortiGate. From there, the team was able to pilot the SASE project.

"Throughout the project, Fortinet Cloud Consulting Services was instrumental in testing functionality for specific users, fine-tuning applications and permissions, and configuring the security features," said Archile Lauro Mortel, System Network Administrator at ZEMA. "At 85 per cent deployment, people using it were already saying it was a major win compared to the previous solution."

The ZEMA IT team also noticed the change with tickets for VPN issues dropping from around 30 a month to just two or three — often isolated and unrelated to the network — such as a poor remote Wi-Fi or LAN connection.

ZEMA also takes advantage of FortiSASE's digital experience monitoring capability to troubleshoot issues when they occur and see what bandwidth is being consumed. ZEMA now has unified threat protection for greater security across VPN connections and complete network visibility.

Mortel said ZEMA benefited significantly from its relationship with the Fortinet team. "We know that they're always there," he said. "We are pressured to finish everything as soon as possible, and the Fortinet team's support saves us time and resources."

Visit https://www.fortinet.com/products/sase to learn more about FortiSASE solutions.


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