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The Challenge

Taking a Zero-Trust Approach to Securing Cloud Access

Like many modern organizations, they are pursuing a cloud-first approach for data hosting and applications. This strategy provides many benefits to the organization but can also make them more vulnerable to compromised credentials and devices. They wanted to fortify administrative access to cloud providers and protect access to applications that are cloud-hosted and widely accessible. These are essential first steps for securing their workforce with a zero-trust approach.

Additionally, with employees located across many branches in Europe, the company wanted to provide secure remote access so employees could have the option to work from home and other locations. They needed an easy-to-use and effective solution that would protect this new cloud-first, remote environment and maximize user adoption.

The Solution

Implementation Approach

Because of their complex work environment of many satellite offices, the team took time to plan the cadence for rollout of Duo to users and applications. They also partnered with a Duo Care team that consisted of a dedicated customer success manager and engineer. The team found that the additional layer of support helped them to stay on track and help with launch planning and technical support. The Project Lead said, “We are not used to this level of care and dedication throughout a deployment to ensure it is successful.”

The team started with the most business-critical applications, protecting access for 50 administrators to its cloud provider. Next, the team enrolled around 200 users from the IT department to enable and protect remote access via externally published applications and VPN connections.

After enrolling key technical groups, the team rolled out Duo in a series of waves to the broader organization. Each wave was clearly planned based on the applications that would be protected, which groups would be in the waves and the schedule of communications. Additionally, the team gained insight into the possible hesitation of employees to use personal phones for authentication and provided multiple authentication options to suit this need.

Business Results

The company has achieved its goals of strengthening access for administrators, protecting important assets and enabling an accessible and secure cloud-first environment. The team found that Duo was easy for admins to implement and easy for users to enroll and adopt. Having a range of authentication methods helped to reduce employee concerns and increase participation.

Additionally, during a recent transportation strike, employees were pleased to have a home office option. Many appreciated that they did not have to find a way into the office and could continue working uninterrupted with remote access to applications at home.

One of the primary values of Duo for them is the ability to integrate with any application, regardless of platform or technology base. They found that other vendors only worked with a subset of their applications, whereas Duo provided the most coverage and best secured their environment. In addition to protecting all cloud applications, they appreciated the ability to protect different types of technologies with ease, such as load-balancers, VPN and VDI.

Going Forward

They continue to roll Duo out to more locations and users, as feedback has been positive from the organization. Duo is now a core part of their security strategy. Built into the process for any new project or application is an evaluation of whether Duo should protect it. This gives the team the confidence that they are reducing their security risk while enabling a flexible and accessible cloud-first environment.