Norman McKeown, LSH Auto UK on BitDam Office365 Email, OneDrive and MS Teams

Norman McKeown, LSH Auto UK on BitDam Office365 email, OneDrive and MS Teams

We’ve interviewed Norman McKeown, LSH Auto UK Head of Information Technology about his experience with BitDam’s Advanced Threat Protection (ATP). LSH Auto is the largest Mercedes Benz dealerships in the UK.

Here is the result in video and text:

Q: How did the COVID-19 pandemic present new challenges for LSH Auto? Collaborating digitally was maybe not as big a piece of the puzzle previously?

A: Yeah. COVID-19, I think for a lot of organizations, certainly ours, came out of the blue and came on very quickly. Being an automobile organization, a car company, we are quite old-fashioned in the way we do a lot of things. Digital collaboration, remote working, was not normal practice for our business. When COVID-19 hit we had to figure out how can we keep certain areas of the business trading whilst working remotely? It was a whole new level of collaboration, a whole new level of data protection. A whole new level of information transfer that we had not previously done as an organization or indeed as an industry before. The biggest challenge was how could we quickly convert to that mode of working while still keeping our systems secure, keeping our users secure, and as I say, keeping our customers’ information secure. It was a very, very quick and rapid change of use of technology for us as a group.

Q: As you were evaluating potential solutions, why did LSH Auto ultimately decide to invest in BitDam?

A: BitDam came to my attention as a relatively new organization. But their approach to, initially email security, which was the first area I was looking at, was a very different approach to what I’d seen with some of the other ATP companies that I was dealing with. The big wins for me was their ease of integration. Setting it up couldn’t have been simpler. I didn’t have to change my users where I was working. They carry on working as normal. But also the ability to react whenever new threats came out. The ability to react and ensure that we were protected against those threats was one of the biggest wins for me that meant I didn’t have to think about speaking to my ATP company to say, “This new threat is available, can you help protect us against it?” BitDam were already ahead of the curve and quite often protecting me before I’d even had a chance to talk to them about it.

Q: Now moving on to more of the results that you see now that you’re partnering with BitDam. From a high level, what are the results been? What does BitDam enable for LSH Auto?

A: Since we’ve implemented BitDam, we’ve seen a significant drop in the number of phishing emails and rogue emails that have come into our system, into our users’ inboxes. For me, with a very small IT department to support the group, it’s great having BitDam on board because by the time we’ve received the notification, we know that this batch has already been dealt with and handled and it’s an awareness notification for us. Seeing what has made through our first level of defense and having BitDam as our second level of defense and since expanded from just the email into OneDrive, into Teams, into SmartLink scanning, means that I know my users are secure and that very, very little rogue data gets through us to my users’ inbox. That has made my life a lot easier, of almost not having to think about it from that respect.

Q: What would you say the number one biggest benefit of BitDam has been??

A: I’d say the ease of deployment has to be the biggest win for me as head of IT and for us as an organization. Looking at solutions that would involve changing the way users operate, there’s a human element in that. Where they risk forgetting to use the secure route. Forgetting to click on the secure button. With BitDam, we were able to deploy it centrally from the IT division in a very quick period of time. Our users carry on as they normally do. They don’t have to think about it. They don’t have to think about system security. It just integrates seamlessly with Office 365 platform and scans everything in the background. Definitely for us, one of the biggest wins is we could roll it out with essentially no user training.

Q: How does BitDam, for OneDrive and Teams, helped you to address some of those challenges that you spoke of earlier with collaborating remotely?

A: We’ve originally deployed BitDam against our email client, we’ve since expanded the protection to cover our OneDrive and our Teams portions of Office 365. This was actually done prior to COVID, really causing an issue in the UK. But for us it meant we were in a really strong position to bring the company into a digital world and digital collaboration. It meant we could securely share business information, financial information, customer information. Knowing that we had this level of protection in our system, that should any attack try to come in, we had this level of protection that could stop that from compromising our data and ultimately compromising our customers’ information. It made life an awful lot easier for us moving to the new world of remote working.

Q: Has BitDam ATP caught threats that have been missed by Microsoft Office ATP?

A: One of the reasons why I wanted to look for an additional ATP program was I was seeing a number of threats coming through our Microsoft Office ATP program. Whilst it was picking up a large number, I still had a significant number of threats coming through and reaching the users’ mailboxes. Some of which were easy to spot, some, even for me as a seasoned professional in IT, took quite a bit of analysis to determine, was it a phishing email or was it a genuine one? Once we introduced the BitDam platform as a second line of defense, we then noticed that those that were coming through and bypassing the Microsoft ATP were then being picked up by the BitDam platform and stopping reaching our end users’ mailboxes and our end users’ OneDrives, which really give us that extra added level of security that we were looking for.

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