HGC Accelerates Zero Trust Journey with Illumio

Implementing micro-segmentation that keeps pace with their fast-growing business.

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Summary

Industry: Telecommunications

Environment: On-premises, hybrid and private clouds

Challenge: Enabling a Zero Trust security posture across a globally distributed enterprise network

Solution: Illumio Core for leading Zero Trust micro-segmentation, providing real-time visibility and control to protect against lateral movement attacks

Results: Increased operational efficiency; real-time visibility and actionable insights; ability to segment at the speed of the business; confidence that Zero Trust controls are in place

Customer Overview & Challenge

At a time in which connectivity and digitization are paramount, the telecommunications industry plays an essential role, marked by the ever-evolving digital journey – a long haul for many telco companies. But leaders like HGC Global Communications Limited (HGC) are well on their way.

After acquiring digital technology solution company Macroview Telecom in 2019, the Hong Kong and international fixed-line operator and ICT service provider embarked on their digital journey and brought on Chief Digital Officer, Jacqueline Teo, to lead the way. When the time came to “take a breath and review our ecosystem, cybersecurity was at the core of that.”

HGC offers customers security consulting services, and its commitment to cybersecurity is inherent in its mission. But in the face of a distributed workforce, horizontal expansion, and increasingly complex environments, they needed a new strategy to strengthen their risk posture and protect a growing network.

Jacqueline and team decided to go the way of Zero Trust security.

Following an external audit, micro-segmentation – a foundational component of Zero Trust – was recommended. They needed real-time visibility of the network and protection against lateral movement.

“We were committed to a ‘least-privilege’ Zero Trust approach right down to our applications and workloads. But we needed the right solution that would adjust to the inevitable changes in our environment, not require too many human hands and eyes, and not impact our reliable connectivity.”

HGC set its sights on best-of-breed Zero Trust solutions.

Illumio Solution

Illumio immediately appeared on HGC’s radar as a leader in Zero Trust and micro-segmentation. The team evaluated other solutions, including those from existing technology partners, but ultimately found Illumio to be the perfect fit.

“Illumio Core proved to be technically superior, not just in terms of what it offers, but also its functionality and how it works. It was the most mature solution that actually delivers on its promises in a way that’s stable and consistent.”

Illumio has “changed the entire work practice,” said Jacqueline. The team gained a clear understanding of application and workload connections and behavior through the real-time application dependency map. Visual feedback and automated policy creation have reduced operational effort by 25 percent – eliminating time previously spent trawling through firewall logs.

Moving at the speed of their fast-growing business, HGC segmented all of its high-value assets within four months, replacing ten firewalls and dramatically reducing hardware costs in the meantime.

As for “the benefit you can’t buy,” according to Jacqueline: “A Zero Trust posture was a necessity for HGC and Illumio accelerated us on that journey. This has given us peace of mind – and you can’t put a price on that.”

Jacqueline was keen to highlight the effort that went into making the implementation a success. “Illumio goes the extra mile for customers, and that fits with the HGC values. It’s all about the customer.”

As HGC continues to expand its footprint globally, Illumio’s network-agnostic approach to micro-segmentation ensures security will adapt and scale with them – enabling transformation, not disrupting it. The HGC team anticipates continued efficiencies and savings as they extend Illumio across the entire corporate network.

Customer Benefits

Easy path to Zero Trust

Illumio Core is built on an allowlist model, so only connections that are explicitly defined by policy are allowed. This approach puts the team in an optimal position to prevent lateral movement and accelerate the Zero Trust journey.

See and segment swiftly

Illumio’s real-time application dependency map, Illumination, enables HGC to visualize and understand workload communications. Automated policy recommendations only increase their efficiency.

quote

A Zero Trust posture was a necessity for HGC and Illumio accelerated us on that journey. This has given us peace of mind – and you can’t put a price on that.

Jacqueline Teo, Chief Digital Officer