Furthering the cause of education in Brazil is the mission that fuels SOMOS Educação’s laser-focused drive toward technology and innovation—and McAfee is playing a pivotal role in that transformation. As CIO Juliano Pereira points out, “Compared to 99% of the educational organizations in Brazil, we are way ahead of the game”—and, in large part, it’s a result of embracing McAfee’s connected security ecosystem.
As one of the biggest K through 12 educational groups in Brazil, SOMOS Educação provides a comprehensive portfolio of integrated educational textbooks, digital products, and services, including the administration of preparatory courses and exams. The organization’s push toward innovation is evidenced by its recent migration of instructional systems and applications to the cloud. And, alongside that effort, SOMOS Educação, with enthusiastic support from its board of directors, is making a significant investment in strengthening, unifying, and streamlining its security architecture at every touch point—servers, endpoints, and databases.
CIO Juliano Pereira and lean team of devoted and seasoned IT and security professionals are determined to ensure a more secure and consistent experience for the students who use their services, their parents, and SOMOS Educação’s 5,500 employees, who are distributed across 50 locations nationwide. Personal privacy, data protection, and building a solid and reliable defense against advanced threats like the recent WannaCry ransomware outbreak top their list of security priorities.
To that end, Pereira and his team selected McAfee as the organization’s primary security vendor, primarily because of the McAfee integrated approach to security and the simple, single-pane-of-glass management capabilities via the McAfee ePolicy Orchestrator (McAfee ePO) console. The organization started its journey with McAfee by deploying McAfee Endpoint Security, which provides a single platform with an array of defenses—everything from web protection to ensure safe browsing to scanning that uncovers vulnerabilities to behavioral analysis and machine learning to detect advanced and zero-day threats.
Next on the agenda was implementation of McAfee DLP Endpoint, which has had a marked impact on the organization’s culture and on those who make use of its educational services. Pereira has made a point of informing all the organization’s constituents about these added data security controls as a way of heightening security awareness among employees and giving external users greater peace of mind. “Students and their parents will feel more at ease, and employees will be more mindful about the way they use and transmit data,” says Pereira.
At the heart of SOMOS Educação’s updated security architecture is the McAfee ePO console (video below), which has considerably elevated the security team’s efficiency and capabilities by consolidating management tasks, facilitating enforcement of data protection policies, and offering an unprecedented level of visibility and reporting. As an example, Pereira points out that the McAfee ePO console revealed that McAfee had thwarted 1,065 threats in a week’s time.
Migration of student services to the cloud, which Pereira sees as both inevitable and necessary, prompted him to adopt McAfee Web Protection, which provides consistent protection and policies both on premises and in the cloud.
SOMOS Educação’s journey to innovation and better cybersecurity has just begun, but already the organization has made great strides. Pereira and this team are proud of the progress they’ve made so far and look forward to expanding the depth and breadth of their cutting-edge cybersecurity architecture and to serving as an example for other organizations in the education sector.
“We are at the beginning of our journey, and we still have far to go before we achieve all our goals, but we take pride in the fact that we are leading the way when it comes to cybersecurity. When our schools hear that we are providing them with stronger security, they are really pleased and receptive,” affirms Pereira.
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