Hermanson Protects Against Identity Theft with Managed Defense

Mitigating Risk with 24/7/365 Cybersecurity Security

Written By // Larry Jensen

Seattle, WA

Almost a quarter of cybersecurity professionals have assessed the probability of future cyberattacks to their organization as very or extremely likely.

With major changes in how their people work together, and in the way applications and data would be delivered to personnel in the field, Hermanson quickly understood there could be risk to their data, people, finances, and reputation if they were subjected to a cyberattack.

To keep their small team of IT professionals focused on business process innovation, Hermanson leadership looked for a way to mitigate risk where it was highest and to implement a proactive plan that would concentrate on end users, endpoints, and identity.

Founded in 1979, Hermanson Company is a leading mechanical contractor in the Pacific Northwest, offering a comprehensive suite of mechanical systems design, fabrication, construction, repair and maintenance services. Their clients span the Puget Sound area and include corporate campuses, high-rises, hospitals, infrastructure and public works.

Hermanson believes that construction is a people business. Their mission is to help customers succeed by delivering an experience that exceeds expectations. To do this, Hermanson truly partners with their customers to understand their goals and challenges and take the time to build the relationships that are at the core of their business.

Seattle is one of the busiest construction markets in the country, with major competition for talent. Hermanson knew that to continue to set themselves apart and increase their competitive edge, they should focus on innovation.

Innovative Thinking Enables Differentiation Strategy

Hermanson recognized the importance of developing a strong cybersecurity strategy and wanted to proactively protect their data. After reading a blog about SWC’s Managed Defense service, Hermanson’s Director of Information Technology, Tom Papahronis, reached out wanting to learn more.

Given our mobile workforce and amount of data we work with every day, I knew that we needed to incorporate a cutting-edge security strategy that would keep our data and people safe from evolving threats. We were already utilizing Microsoft tools and they were generating alerts, but we didn’t have the capacity to manage them appropriately.

– Tom Papahronis, Director of Information Technology at Hermanson

Tom had other business priorities he wanted his team to focus on, but with so much of their time taken up handling cybersecurity and end-user support, they were being pulled in different directions. SWC’s Managed Defense solution fit what they were looking for, allowing the team to reduce the time they spend on operational efforts and still improve their cybersecurity posture.

24/7/365 Security Made Easy

Developed with Microsoft, SWC’s Managed Defense service utilizes the intelligent tools found in Microsoft 365 and Windows Defender ATP to harden the client’s environment while leveraging artificial intelligence plus the security expertise of SWC’s 24/7/365 team.

SWC began by configuring Hermanson’s environment to optimize deployment of Microsoft 365 security features. SWC then began monitoring Hermanson’s environment, focusing on “front line” systems like Azure cloud, Office 365, and mobile endpoints.

SWC’s Sergey Tsygalnitsky, Security Architect, provided advice to Hermanson based upon data from the Managed Defense service, knowledge of Hermanson business priorities, and cybersecurity industry expertise.

With a very mobile workforce, Hermanson is receiving more and riskier sign-on notifications. Some of these are authorized employees logging in from new locations, while some may be hackers attempting to breach their systems. How do you know the difference? Managed Defense allows Hermanson’s team to confidently focus their efforts on other initiatives, knowing that if there is a high-risk threat or leaked credentials, the SWC team will take the appropriate action to keep them protected.

– Sergey Tsygalnitsky, Security Architect at SWC Technology Partners

Results and Future

Since deploying Managed Defense, Tom and his team no longer have to manage alerts coming in or worry that high-risk activities may be overlooked. Their partnership with SWC allows the Hermanson team to stay focused on business priorities and deliver value to the company.

Looking toward the future, Hermanson is continuing to embrace digital transformation and evaluate opportunities to keep everyone centered on the business.

Cybercrime damages will cost the world $6 trillion annually by 2021. Forward-thinking organizations like Hermanson are taking steps needed to avoid becoming part of these statistics.

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