Each year, our sister publication Computer Dealer News hosts the Channel Elite Awards to recognize IT Solution Provider for their innovation, leadership, and commitment for creating value for their customers. As Canada’s leading IT channel publication, CDN invited solution providers to submit their best work to nine different categories for 2013’s awards. Here, we present the case studies these award nominees put forward to us. Find out who the big winners are on Sept. 11 when CDN presents them at the CEA Awards Gala.

Learn more about CDN’s Channel Elite Awards 2013

Nominee: IPS from Vancouver, British Columbia

Managed Services Solution description

IPS is a leading Managed Security Services Provider (MSSP) in Canada. IPS offers a suite of Managed Security Services to help organizations protect their information assets 24x7x365, manage their compliance with industry regulations, lower the total cost of ownership, and improve the efficiency of their security operations. IPS’s Managed Security Services include Intrusion Detection & Prevention, Firewall and VPN, Log Management and SIEM, Security Monitoring and Vulnerability Management. IPS ensures the security of our clients’ crucial systems by providing threat management, real-time monitoring/alerting, incident response and remediation services. IPS’s Managed Security Services are backed by the company’s 24x7x365 Security Operations Centre (SOC), where a team of highly trained and certified security analysts provide daily maintenance and proactively monitor clients’ security environments. The analysts rapidly respond to potential problems and work closely with our clients on remediation efforts. IPS provides both cloud hosted and on premise Managed Security Services. The specific Managed Services Solution that will be the focus of this submission is IPS’s Cloud SaaS Service – Log Management, SIEM threat management and response service. IPS provided this Managed Services Solution to one of its clients, a major provider of support to online insight communities. This service helps protect organizations from a broad range of threats by systematically collecting, correlating and analyzing data from their various devices; including systems as well as network and security devices. This service leverages our proprietary SecureGuard™ platform. The SecureGuard™, deployed on key segments of the network provides log collection and visibility to network traffic. It provides high-visibility of events both from a network and systems perspective, making it easier for IPS’s security analysts to identify security incidents. SecureGuard contains an advanced correlation engine that helps to roll up all the events into a comprehensive dashboard, providing a holistic view of an organization’s security posture. The Geolocation module within the products can also ensure traffic from untrusted geographic locations can be quickly blocked at the source. Custom rules and reports can be built to fit specific business requirements or satisfy regulatory compliance needs. IPS’s team of security experts monitor, review, interpret and investigate all the logs and alerts generated by the client’s infrastructure, and respond immediately to any signs of malicious activity. They then work closely with the client on remediation efforts. IPS also provides monthly reports to help our clients meet their operational, security and compliance requirements.

What makes your Managed Services innovative or original compared to the competition?

We believe that IPS is the only pure play Canadian entity that provides Cloud SaaS security services which combines our powerful Log management, SIEM service and incident management services into a single platform. The service also ensures all Canadian customer data stays within Canadian borders, an important consideration for many of our Canadian customers. The service provides a great deal of flexibility for our clients, as they can utilize this service to address their compliance, security operations and security events management requirements. Customers do not have to make an investment in any capital infrastructure, as this security as a service model enables them to get a service operational within a short implementation time period and with no capital expenditure. The service is a complete turn-key solution, backed by our 24x7x365 security operations team, and as result, our customers do not have to invest in training, staffing and other operational costs that would be associated with implementing and supporting such a technology in-house. Finally, since log management and SIEM required a high degree of technical expertise, it makes it an ideal platform for a hosted and a managed service. In summary: 1. Only Canadian hosted and managed service 2. Combines proprietary and power sensor platform into a powerful normalization and correlation engine 3. The customer data never leaves Canada 4. Zero capital investment and infrastructure required 5. The service is complete turnkey solution and provides an effective way for number of medium enterprise customers to get 24×7 coverage from security threats

What were the benefits of your Managed Services Solution for your client and what evidence can you provide to show this?

Customers can purchase this service offering via a monthly service with little or no capital investment required, giving companies with smaller budgets access to more sophisticated cyber threat defense, detection and response solutions. The minimum contract length for the service being 1 year, it provides the customer the flexibility they to sign on for a minimum contract period and adjust their operational budgets. Businesses can decrease expenses and deployment timelines with this cloud-based security solution, which offers real-time analysis of network and application security alerts provided by IPS’s Security Operations Centre (SOC). As a cloud-based service, these capabilities are available to customers through IPS’s existing subscription model, minimizing the need for additional capital investment. Typical cost for an in-house implemented solution: • Average acquisition cost – $250,000 • Annual support – $15,000 • Training – $7,000 • 24 x7 monitoring and log review (Resources) – $200,000 IPS average monthly service cost: • Subscription cost – $ 8000- $10,000 • Service provisioning – $5000 -$10,000 This solution also helps clients meet their PCI compliance requirements, another key driver for this service. The collection, management, and analysis of log data are integral to meeting PCI audit requirements. We monitor our clients information systems 24x7x365 and in real-time to ensure compliance with PCI requirements. Investigations and alarms can be leveraged for immediate analysis of activities that impact the organization’s cardholder data systems, allowing areas of noncompliance to be identified in real-time. IPS’s Log Management and SIEM services include reporting which can help clients meet specific compliancy requirements. The cost associated with demonstration PCI compliance can quickly spiral, the SaaS service enables them to meet various PCI controls in a cost effective manner, without investing in people, training and infrastructure.

What are the main reasons that your Managed Services are better for the customer than an on-premises solution?

Reasons why IPS’s Cloud-hosted Log Management and SIEM service is a better suited for the customer than an on-premise solution: • No capital expenditure for customers • No annual maintenance and support cost • No requirements for expensive hardware for implementing the solution • Reduction in power requirements and cooling ( Green Technology Solution) • Less risk for client as the technology evolves with minimum contract lengths • Combines remote log collection which reduces need for implementation of hardware/software at remote location for client with distributed environments. • Our product offering provides a more holistic view of events across the network infrastructure this reducing cost for deploying more point solutions • Customer data never leaves Canada as all data stays within data centers located in Canada • Provides clients full visibility and mitigate risk 24x7x365 without the operational expense of in-house Security Operations Center (SOC) • IPS hosted SaaS solution provides Security & Peace of mind, around the clock for clients, so they can focus on their core business.

How did the Managed Service improve the customer’s ability to server its internal or external clients?

The customer was required by number of its various revenue generating clients to demonstrate compliance to various regulatory standards and demonstrate a sound security operations model, ensuring the customer data was not put at risk. Our platform allows the customer to view security events as they happen on their network in almost real time. Different groups within the customer network can leverage the platform for different requirements, ie. Troubleshooting problems, managing security events, reporting for compliance requirements, etc. IPS’s Managed Security Services provided a stable and reliable infrastructure platform, allowing the client’s IT department to focus on other business needs. This in turn led to increased satisfaction levels within the customer’s client base.

How does the solution further your client’s green or environmentally friendly plans?

Our client is a SaaS market research firm. “An inherent benefit of a Saas solution is that you reduce the carbon footprint of any on premise solution – energy costs, operating the equipment. By offering our service globally, we have an environmentally friendly impact on a global scale”, says the client’s director of IT. IPS strives to reduce the environmental footprint of our company and our client’s organizations, as much as possible. By providing eco-friendly services to our clients, we also help other organizations to be environmentally friendly. Since the solution is a cloud service and multi-tenant, the infrastructure is shared between many of our customers, reducing the data center power and cooling requirements for our clients. The nature of our managed services solutions are environmentally friendly in that they reduce overall energy consumption by reducing the need for each client to purchase their own equipment, instead, equipment at IPS’s data centre is shared among multiple clients. Furthermore, all reports and event triage notifications are provided electronically, thereby reducing printing and other associated cost related to infrastructure. In addition, both IPS and the client, utilize low power usage infrastructure to reduce energy consumption as well as reduce costs. As a company, whenever possible, IPS uses environmentally preferable products, services and practices. IPS regularly recycles or donates all its old electronic and physical equipment. IPS encourages staff to use public transportation or non-auto transportation for their commute to work and to client sites. This initiative has been successful in that 80% of IPS’s staff use non-auto transportation to work and the majority of their client sites.

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