Institution : Professional Engineers Ontario
Industry : Statutory Organization
Location : Toronto, Ontario, Canada
The Association of Professional Engineers of Ontario (PEO) is a not-for-profit statutory licensing organization that was founded in 1922 under the Professional Engineers Act to regulate the practice of professional engineering in the Province of Ontario, Canada. PEO regulates the actions and conduct of its various License and Certificate of Authorization holders in order that the public interest may be served and protected.
Professional Engineers Ontario is a huge organization with tens of thousands of members. Because of the large number of members, its day-to-day activity depends on the effective usage of the internet bandwidth. PEO faced the uphill task of ensuring judicious usage of Internet Bandwidth. To achieve this, they had to ensure that the Internet traffic gets monitored constantly and non-business usage gets curtailed. Lincoln A. Mason, Network Administrator, PEO stated the challenge as, “Before, I had no simple method of identifying traffic patterns." Analyzing the traffic pattern manually is a cumbersome task. Browsing through the raw logs from the Firewall to find out the bandwidth usage is tedious and inefficient. The other challenge was monitoring the traffic pattern in real-time. The tools available in the market were pretty hard to set up, were not all that easy to use, and very expensive. Lincoln put it as, "Tools I tried required a huge effort to capture and analyze traffic."
ManageEngine Firewall Analyzer
ManageEngine offered Firewall Analyzer,a perfect solution to the challenges faced by PEO. The solution generates pre-built, category wise reports, which helps PEO to visualize the bandwidth usage. To add extra edge to the reports, there are live reports. The live reports display the real- time bandwidth usage. It enables PEO with graphical reports to find out the following category wise bandwidth consumption: top users, top protocols, and top services. It offers PEO with the business and non-business hours usage trend information. The solution is inexpensive and easy to use. Lincoln acknowledged the solution as, “With close to 70,000-membership base, internet bandwidth usage is critical to the organization's function. I needed a product that is easy to setup, easy to use and affordable. Firewall Analyzer meet and surpass all these requirements.” With inputs like real time bandwidth usage monitoring, usage trend during business hours and getting alerted by the anomaly in the trend, PEO is at ease in managing the bandwidth usage to optimum.
An important aspect of Firewall analyzer that impressed PEO was, its full support for Cisco firewall, which was the company’s primary firewall device. It is easy to deploy and within five minutes from installation, it can start rolling out reports. “Deployment was quite simple.” Lincoln added further. Another important feature of the application is vital security reports indicating attacks, viruses, failed log-on, and denied events.
The Firewall Analyzer solution saved the PEO Network IT staff from the perils of manually examining the raw logs to capture the bandwidth usage. Lincoln expressed the benefits of the solution as, "With Firewall Analyzer there is no requirement to read through thousands of lines of raw data all the captured data is displayed in easy-to-read GUI." The Administrator was able to easily identify the behavior pattern of bandwidth usage and the root cause responsible for the sudden change in behavior. Lincoln expresses the impact of the solution as, " I am now able to identify internet traffic anomalies quickly and regain control of my internet bandwidth by blocking offending IPs when necessary."
In PEO, huge amount of log data is analyzed instantly and without manual intervention. This helped in analyzing the bandwidth usage trend. The IT administration staff are able to monitor the traffic pattern in real-time. They are able to quickly identify the non-business related traffic. They could control the bandwidth by blocking offending IPs or filtering the unwanted traffic. Lincoln expresses the results of deploying the solution as, "I am now able to filter out or block non-business related traffic." The PEO Administrator’s total control led to optimum usage of bandwidth and in turn led to the reduction in Internet bandwidth expenditure.