Cloud-based authentication- and security-solutions from Microsoft, partnered by Lumagate, makes it possible for one of the largest Danish IT-companies to migrate vital tools to the cloud and to accommodate and automatically administrate several thousand mobile units. The solution will increase the level of security, prevent unauthorized access to sensitive information and nullify the need for cumbersome and time-consuming log-on procedures.
By the end of 2016, all 3 200 employees at KMD will access their e-mail, calendar and files through Office 365 in the cloud. The same goes for most of our external consultants and partners, so this is a substantial move from on-premise based systems to cloud-IT.
- Anders Damm Christensen, Head of Department, KMD A/S.
It is important that our colleagues across the organization are able to access their files and productivity tools securely and conveniently. Therefore, Lumagate helped design and implement a security infrastructure based on Microsoft Enterprise Mobility Suite, he adds.
Laying the foundation for an ambitious cloud-project
The Enterprise Mobility Suite – or EMS, as the product suite is usually called – covers a number of different technologies. At KMD, especially two comes into play, as Azure AD authenticate user-ID’s across various platforms and devices by syncing KMD’s Active Directory-infrastructure up to the cloud, while Intune monitors the integrity of all devices with access to the corporate network.
We need to know that users are who they appear to be and that their devices are updated, uncompromised and compliant. EMS plays a crucial part in that process,” says Anders Damm Christensen, who has been lead on the project for the better part of a year.
EMS is solving a lot of challenges for us. But it is also a fairly new product and we are a complex organization, so Lumagate definitely had their work cut out for them. But they have been able and willing to listen to our needs and demands, to solve challenges and to work out solutions along the way. There have been some technical challenges along the way, but nothing Lumagate, Microsoft and our own team couldn’t solve in cooperation.
Empowering employees without compromising on security
Anders Damm Christensen explains that the entire idea of ‘going cloud’ stemmed from a number of challenges with the existing on premise-based infrastructure. For instance, IT wanted to make it possible to sync mail on any type of connection and to free the ever-more mobile KMD-employees from cumbersome and time-consuming two-factor logon-procedures. Management also wanted to let employees work on practically any mobile device of their choice in order to stay productive at office, home or on the road.
Also, many colleagues depended on consumer-technology like Dropbox to share and access files through the cloud, which is undesirable for a number of reasons. For instance, we have no way to safeguard sensitive data on personal accounts – and we risk losing important information or documents when employees leave the company, Anders Damm Christensen explains.
Automatically maintaining the integrity and compliance of mobile units
In the near future, however, KMD-employees can collaborate securely and share files with Office 365 and Microsoft OneDrive for Business on practically any given device. Azure AD takes care of the authentication, Intune confirms that all connected devices are secure – and KMD maintains ownership of data and processes on the cloud-based infrastructure.
If, for instance, an KMD-employee forgets his iPhone in a cab or suspect that it might have been stolen, he or the company can remotely wipe all corporate data and applications from it. Also, Intune constantly syncs with all connected devices to check if relevant security updates have been implemented or if any devices shows signs of being hacked – and to deny the device in question access to corporate data until the situation has been remedied.
The basic idea is to make security so simple, convenient and transparent that it becomes practically invisible. We will be able to accommodate a huge number of devices with only a minimum of hassle and day-to-day administration – and employees can enroll or unregister their personal devices. At the same time, we will maintain a very high degree of security across the entire install-base,” Anders Damm Christensen says.
All things considered, I think that Lumagate and we have succeeded in building a good security-foundation to establish the cloud-project on, he adds.
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