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Freedom Health Cures Network Ills with Fortinet
Posted: Mon Nov 08, 2010 10:04:18 AM
User-Based Application Control Helps Increase Network Bandwidth

November 2, 2010 - Fortinet® - the leading network security provider and the worldwide leader of unified threat management (UTM) solutions – today announced that Freedom Health has deployed Fortinet network security appliances throughout its network. FortiGate® appliances are deployed to help protect the network from attacks and to help the IT team manage network usage.

Freedom Health, ranked in 2009 as the 7th fastest growing company by Inc 500, was previously using a WatchGuard solution for its firewall protection and Websense for Web content filtering. The firewall was providing neither the functionality nor the HIPAA and CES compliancy that was needed for the healthcare provider. The Web content filtering solution lacked the visibility into the network that Freedom Health was seeking. The Fortinet solution was selected in 2009 by Amin Chikhalia, Vice President of Information Technology at Freedom Health, to help protect the network because more network security functionality was available in a single appliance and at a lower cost of ownership – thereby increasing the return on investment.

One of the hidden benefits of the FortiGate appliances is the Fortinet Server Authentication Extension (FSAE™), which is used, in combination with Microsoft Active Directory, by integrating user authentication with FortiGate appliances. The integration of FSAE with active directories allows for role- or title-based user profiles. This is extremely important when computers are shared and when there are different user types. No matter where an employee logs into the network, their user name and password give them rights to specific applications such as Google and Facebook, or even activities as basic as Web browsing. This also allows for more control over network usage while also allowing the IT team to more easily manage network bandwidth.

“Deployment of the Fortinet appliances has proven to be very beneficial to us,” said Aaron Clary, Network Manager - Information Technology Division at Freedom Health. “We are now able to be proactive with our network security practices rather than reactive. The application control feature is allowing us to manage bandwidth constraints as well as set policies based on employee roles. I love the FortiGate appliances and they do everything that I need now and will need as part of our security roadmap.”

Deployed at 14 different locations are different FortiGate appliances. FortiGate-310B appliances are serving as the core firewall for four locations. Smaller satellite locations are using FortiGate-51B appliances, which are being used for firewall, anti-spam, Web content filtering, intrusion prevention and WAN acceleration.

Also deployed in the Freedom Health network is a FortiManager™ and a FortiAnalyzer™ appliance. Prior to the deployment, the healthcare provider had no way to report on network usage including attacks and the network was not centrally managed. The FortiManager and FortiAnalyzer now enable to IT team to have full visibility into the network.

“Healthcare organizations have unique network security needs in that they must protect their internal network as well as private patient information,” said Pete Brant, vice president of enterprise sales at Fortinet. “By being able to set specific policies based on user type, Fortinet appliances allow them to keep their network as healthy as they keep their patients.”

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