As a member of the volunteer fire brigade, one of my tasks is to put out fires. I like to do this in my free time, but not in the context of my job.
In the area of cybersecurity, in particular, foresight and prevention are essential to the security of a company. That’s why, in 2015, it became apparent to those of us in the IT department of SICK that the “end of life” of our legacy appliances represented an ideal opportunity to make the switch to cloud security before the hardware solution would put us in constant firefighting mode.
At that time, cloud solutions were still early in the technology adoption life cycle and were considered carefully, especially at the management level of a German medium-sized company, such as SICK. But the technological superiority of Zscaler helped us convince our stakeholders, including the works council, to become “early adopters” and put the company in a strong position for future growth. And that paid off. In retrospect, that decision has proven itself many times over, something we witness on a nearly monthly basis.
Zscaler was the first large cloud provider that we partnered with. It was extremely beneficial to start our digital transformation by focusing on security, which was critical to adopting a cloud-ready infrastructure and rolling out future cloud projects. It has also allowed us to be proactive, putting strategic plans in place, rather than always reacting to new requirements and putting out fires…so to speak.
Today, the highly integrated Zscaler Zero Trust Exchange is at the heart of our IT infrastructure and enables our decentralized development teams to easily collaborate and use cloud applications without security being a bottleneck.
When we started working with Zscaler, we had four internet breakouts worldwide but realized that more things would be happening in the cloud. Therefore, it would not have made economic or operational sense to install hardware in new locations. In the past year alone, we were able to open more than 40 new locations based on our cloud-ready infrastructure and provide fast access to the internet and SaaS apps within a very short time. With local internet breakouts and the Zscaler Client Connector, our employees are always protected and can access their applications as quickly as possible.
For me as an in-house cybersecurity consultant, Zscaler was also an absolute game-changer. Having to log in to various admin consoles in the morning used to cost me a lot of time and nerves. Today, I have a central management interface with Zscaler. When I add a new rule, I don't have to worry about the best way to implement it technically or how to distribute it to dozens of appliances.
My admin work has been significantly simplified since Zscaler. With the time gained, I can now provide our internal customers with the service they need. I also no longer have to spend weekends doing maintenance work, but can put out real fires with my fire department colleagues.
The switch to Zscaler was also incredibly interesting for me professionally. I keep coming into contact with new subject areas due to the constant innovations of the platform. We have rolled out full SSL inspection and added Cloud Firewall and Cloud Sandbox to our security portfolio. Even in our ongoing projects rolling out cloud collaboration tools, Zscaler has been indispensable. We are also considering implementing additional platform components, such as Zscaler Private Access and Zscaler Digital Experience.
The Zscaler Zero Trust Exchange is much more than the cloud version of a web proxy that we started with five years ago. It gives me and the team the opportunity to decisively advance the digital transformation of SICK.
Read the case study to learn more about how Zscaler helped SICK on its digital transformation.