Global food giant Heinz has deployed Sophos' security solutions across EMEA and APAC, protecting thousands of employees against malware attacks and unauthorised application use.

As an internationally recognised brand, Heinz has long understood the importance of maintaining a high level of IT security to mitigate against cyber crime, both in terms of cost to its business as well as reputation damage.

The company was previously using Sophos Anti-Virus to protect all desktop computers against malware.  However, Heinz recently introduced a web-based thin-client for company-wide use, and therefore saw the need to bolster its gateway security to combat the growing threat of web-based attacks, including spyware, viruses, Trojans, worms, adware, and phishing.

"We've always taken an onion skin approach to IT security, ensuring that each layer of the organisation is sufficiently guarded against the threat of attack," says Chris Leonard, European IT security and compliance manager at Heinz.  "Given our growing use of the web, it made sense to look for a dedicated solution that would reduce our exposure to malicious online content."

The company evaluated several hardware-based web security products, opting for Sophos's WS1000 Web Security Appliance because of its proactive approach – stopping new and unknown threats before they have a chance to execute.  Heinz was also impressed that the WS1000 did not have the false positive problems suffered by some other solutions, ensuring that employees are not inconvenienced when accessing non-malicious websites.

"It was vital that we deploy a solution that was able to offer a high level of accuracy when analysing websites, rather than restricting access to legitimate websites and stopping our workforce from doing its job," says Leonard. "The WS1000 met these requirements, while also offering peace of mind, thanks to its ability to block even unknown threats before they have a chance to hit users' desktops."

Heinz is also benefiting from Sophos Anti-Virus's application control feature, which allows businesses to restrict the usage of unauthorised or unwanted applications such as games, instant messaging, peer-to-peer file sharing or VoIP programs.  The new technology minimises the risk of malware entering the organisation via backdoors or vulnerabilities in unsecured applications, while also ensuring that optimal bandwidth is reserved for core business processes.

In addition, Heinz has signed up to Sophos's premium support services to provide ongoing advice and consultation on the best ways to minimise the impact of IT security threats.

"We've been delighted by the high level of dedicated support and expertise delivered by Sophos, particularly given our need for a fast implementation," added Leonard.  "Sophos was able to meet all of the tight deadlines we set them, ensuring the roll-out ran smoothly at all stages, and the support team now play an active role in developing our security strategy to keep it up to speed with the latest online developments."

Annie Gay, vice-president: EMEA at Sophos, adds: "Heinz has consistently demonstrated a forward-thinking attitude to IT security, recognising the latest trends and adjusting its strategy in light of emerging threats.

"The internet now represents the easiest way for cyber criminals to break into corporate networks, particular for firms with a substantial number of online operations.  Heinz has quickly risen to this new security challenge, and now has in place a multi-layered, fully integrated IT solution that can be easily maintained, without impacting upon the company's core activities."