Fewer False Alarms and Greater Ease of Use Relieve the Burden on the IT Department
The Challenge
  • Update an existing, outdated cybersecurity solution
  • Improve cybersecurity capabilities and functionality
  • Meet necessary cybersecurity and legal requirements
The Solution
  • Proofpoint Email Protection
  • Proofpoint Targeted Attack Protection (TAP)
  • Closed-Loop Email Analysis and Response (CLEAR)
The Results
  • Improved email security significantly
  • Relieved strain on the IT department
  • Empowered employees to more easily report potentially dangerous emails

The Challenge

Gossweiler’s success in working with public and private clients around the services required to design, build and manage public infrastructure is closely linked to the quality of the data required to do so. Accordingly, the security and validity of the information that Gossweiler collects, creates and manages is of the utmost importance. A suitable example of this is the knowledge of the exact course of a gas pipeline. If a gas pipeline were to be damaged during the construction of a new road because the data provided by Gossweiler was incorrect, human lives could be put at risk. What’s more, its competitors have already been victims of cyber attacks. Gossweiler wanted to avoid this at all costs.

The solution used by the company in the past reached its limits here. “Our existing solution could not be functionally expanded to the extent that was necessary for us. Furthermore, the detection rate for potentially dangerous emails wasn’t acceptable,” explains Bernhard Völkin, head of IT for Gossweiler. In addition, the number of false alarms due to alleged attack emails had also risen to a high level. And yet another factor caused dissatisfaction at Gossweiler. “Our previous solution was not particularly selective. It treated all potentially dangerous mails and attachments in the same way—for example, simply sorting out mails with macros.” The company regularly receives files in PDF format that contain print commands. “Manual reworking took up more and more of the IT security experts’ time,” reports Völkin. An alternative had to be found.

“Our Proofpoint solutions significantly increase IT security
for us. We’ve never received such comprehensive and
competent support from an IT vendor when implementing
new software and services.””

Bernhard Völkin, head of IT, Gossweiler Ingenieure AG

The Solution

Gossweiler commissioned its IT partner, BNC Business Networks Communications AG, to find a new, powerful alternative to improve IT security. BNC had not been responsible for this part of Gossweiler’s IT infrastructure until then. “Our previous IT security partner simply couldn’t deliver what we needed,” says the IT manager. “And we already had good experience with BNC in other areas.”

BNC IT experts quickly came up with a suitable proposal: Proofpoint Email Protection, Targeted Attack Protection (TAP) and Closed-Loop Email Analysis and Response (CLEAR). After a comprehensive demonstration of the solutions, Völkin was quickly convinced. “It didn’t take much persuasion from BNC,” says Völkin. “What we were shown in the demo was exactly what we were looking for.”

It was important to the decision-makers at Gossweiler that the new solution should be able to handle email far more selectively than was previously possible. They also wanted to ensure that the IT department’s day-to-day operations could be kept at a low level. Instead of only releasing supposedly malicious emails for users, they should be able to concentrate on reducing the amount of time and effort spent on the security of their email.

This improvement of IT security in all areas is part of the fundamental strategy at Gossweiler. It also helped their team address increasingly strict legal requirements.

The Results

Today, these Proofpoint solutions enable Gossweiler’s business and IT staff to spend less time taking things for granted, such as sharing emails from known senders with attachments and active content. Also, the number of false alarms has been drastically reduced. And the new IT security infrastructure enables employees to actively report potentially dangerous emails to IT experts for analysis.

“In addition to improved security, Gossweiler now saves a cumulative 1.5 work weeks of an IT expert per year through the new solution,” emphasizes the IT manager. The next step will be to raise employee awareness through interactive Proofpoint Security Awareness Training, according to the company’s plan.

“We are extremely satisfied with the solution and the cooperation we’ve had with Proofpoint. Our IT department is relieved and our security has been improved. And the commitment of Proofpoint during the implementation has shown us that our decision was— and is—100% the right one,” concluded Völkin.

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