Atlanta Auto Dealership Gets a Jumpstart on Total Threat Protection

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Summary

Wade Ford is a premier auto dealership having served the Atlanta metro area for over 80 years. With a reputation as the oldest and most awarded auto dealership in Atlanta, Wade Ford has set the highest bar for superior customer service and a rewarding buying experience. Ben Warringer runs Business and IT Operations at Wade Ford and is tasked with managing all of the IT resources at the dealership.

Profile

  • Atlanta’s premier auto dealership
  • 80 years in business
  • Award-winning reputation to protect

Challenges

  • Lack of management capabilities on the firewall
  • No control over users’ browsing websites
  • Outbound emails were blacklisting his domain

Solution

  • Barracuda NextGen Firewall X-Series
  • Barracuda Web Security Service
  • Barracuda Email Security Service

Results

  • Central management and total threat protection over network, email, and web threat vectors
  • Flexible deployment options for web filtering to protect users on the internet
  • VPN to provide secure remote access for employees and applications
  • Stop outbound spamming and prevent corporate mail domain from being blacklisted

Security Challenges of Company’s Growth

As the company grew in size, they needed to be able to administer their own network security resources, rather than relying on upstream service providers to manage their security posture for them. “It was becoming critical for us to be able to have control over our own firewall, web security, and email security infrastructure. We needed our own dedicated set of security solutions that could protect our network perimeter, our users browsing the web, and our Exchange infrastructure, and we needed to be able to centrally manage it,” said Ben.

Content Filtering that Covers All Attack Surfaces

As Ben continued to research various web filtering solutions, he whittled down his requirements to a short list. The product had to provide excellent visibility on what his users were browsing. It had to be able to block inappropriate content reliably, as well as provide an easy workflow for whitelisting and overriding certain websites, as well as provide flexible deployment options to cover all potential attack surfaces.

Barracuda offered reliable and easy-to-use Internet filtering capabilities in various form factors for Ben to test. The Barracuda NextGen Firewall X-Series not only provides web filtering as part of the product, it also has the ability to offload internet filtering workloads to the Barracuda Web Security Service. “It was nice to have so many different options from one vendor. We could either enforce our web filtering policies as part of the firewall, as is the case with most UTM solutions, or we could offload this task to Barracuda’s hosted service,” Ben said. “We tried both just because we wanted to see which we would like better. Ultimately we decided to implement our web filtering rules on the Barracuda NextGen Firewall X-Series. But it was great to be able to make an informed decision on things like that,” he added.

Securing Remote Access for Users and Apps

In addition to protecting the web users on his network, Ben also needed to provide access for his employees to Dealertrack, a software solution that helps dealers manage sales & marketing, customer relationships, vehicle inventory, and much more. “Dealertrack was not hosted on our own premises and as a result, we needed a VPN tunnel that could securely transfer sensitive business information between where it was hosted and our dealership. Setting up the site-to-site connection on the Barracuda NextGen Firewall X-Series was extremely simple and straightforward,” Ben explained. In addition to creating site-to-site VPN tunnels for his dealership management software, Ben also used the Barracuda NextGen Firewall X-Series to establish client-to-site connections for his employees who wanted to work remotely. “We like to make sure our employees are comfortable with their working situations at Wade Ford. Knowing that they can be anywhere in the world without having their productivity impacted makes my job a lot easier,” he added.

Blocking Spam, Viruses, and Protecting Sensitive Customer Data

Lastly, Ben wanted to solve the growing issues around viruses that were infecting his Exchange infrastructure. These viruses would target unsuspecting end users in hopes of penetrating the network. They would then utilize Wade Ford’s mail domain to continue their attack campaign. “At times, there were fears of the possibility that our IP addresses would be blacklisted and no one would be able to send emails anymore. It became a real concern that we had to mitigate immediately,” shares Ben.

"I wanted to secure all my threat vectors with a complete solution from a single vendor that builds reliable and turnkey products, is cost-effective, and has phenomenal customer support. That is why I went with Barracuda for Total Threat Protection."
- Ben Warringer, Business and IT Operations, Wade Ford Automotive Dealership

Wade Ford decided to implement Barracuda’s Email Security Service to protect his email users and infrastructure. The Barracuda Email Security Service is a hosted solution that provides comprehensive protection against email threats, and supports both on-premises email systems such as Microsoft Exchange, as well as hosted services like Office 365 and Google Apps. “The change was night and day,” remarked Ben. Immediately after we implemented the service, we noticed significantly less inbound spam and viruses being reported from our employees. The dashboard and message log on the Barracuda Email Security Service were also great ways for me to monitor our outbound email. I could actually see how much potential spam mail would have been sent from our mail domain if the service wasn’t there.”

In addition to preventing outbound spam email, Ben has also begun using the Barracuda Email Security Service to prevent sensitive emails from being sent. They are especially protective of any messages that expose a customer’s confidential information, such as social security or credit card numbers. With a simple quarantine policy, Ben is immediately alerted when a message containing sensitive customer data is being sent. “From there, I can simply log into the service and decide the appropriate course of action to take,” he explained. In addition to quarantining, the Barracuda Email Security Service also offers automatic blocking and encryption capabilities.

Barracuda Provides Wade Ford with Total Threat Protection

With a complete network, email, and web security solution in place, Ben Warringer has provided Wade Ford and its employees with comprehensive, real-time security that spans multiple threat vectors and can be managed from a single pane of glass. Ben concluded, “There are so many security vendors out there, and it becomes difficult for small IT teams like ours to keep them all straight. I wanted to secure all my threat vectors with a complete solution from a single vendor that builds reliable and turnkey products, is cost-effective, and has phenomenal customer support. That is why I went with Barracuda for Total Threat Protection."

About Barracuda

Protecting users, applications, and data for more than 150,000 organizations worldwide, Barracuda Networks has developed a global reputation as the go-to leader for powerful, easy-to-use, affordable IT solutions. The company’s proven customercentric business model focuses on delivering high-value, subscriptionbased IT solutions for security and storage. For additional information, please visit barracuda.com. or follow us on Twitter@barracuda.

About Total Threat Protection

Barracuda’s powerful, best-of-breed security products secure your organization’s threat vectors - email, web, network perimeter, mobile, remote access, and your users whether on premises or in the cloud. Leveraging the benefits of hardware, cloud, and virtual technology, backed by threat intelligence from Barracuda Central - Barracuda solutions consistently deliver total threat protection from zero-day, advanced malware, automated threats, and other attacks.