CxC Connectivity by Convergia
CxC Connectivity by Convergia

Mexican technology company secures 1,000 service stations with Fortinet SD-WAN


ATIO® is a Mexican technology company, founded 27 years ago, that provides software and hardware solutions for the automation and control of fuel supply. The company offers IT solutions to distribution, sales or self-consumption companies that need to manage fuel safely and efficiently, such as service stations, airports, transport terminals and private companies with their own vehicle fleets, among others. The organization has its main operation in Mexico, but also has offices in Argentina and Miami to attend to business in other regions of South America, the United States and the Caribbean.


Technology is essential for proper management of the fuel supply process, which demands high levels of compliance, security, and control. In the case of a service station, it is necessary to keep a detailed record of fuel inputs and outputs, since it is a high-value product. In Mexico, this business even requires being under constant supervision by the government, which has constantly instituted regulations. For many years, fuel management was in the hands of the national oil company until, in 2016, the Mexican government began opening the market to other national and foreign companies.


ATIO® is today the leading company in Mexico with its fuel distribution automation and control solution called ControlGAS®, installed in nearly 5,000 service stations and FuelGATE® in more than 62 airports. Since before 2018, the company detected that its value proposition lacked a security component, since the stations did not have a computer security tool and were susceptible to attacks.


ATIO® offers a solution that includes control devices linked to a cloud-based application platform, these make it easier for its clients to have traceability and control of all fuel management. Thus, they can know who and when made a consumption, obtain statistics, link to ERP systems and even detect alterations or fraud. Reliable connectivity and security are essential to support such a platform.


A connection to the Internet without interruptions is required, since the government requires the sending of the daily volumetric control and it is mandatory to generate consumption reports permanently. In addition, for example, if a service station is cut off, it cannot order fuel or it is impossible to see the inventory online.


Currently, about 20% of the stations have a redundant link to the Internet. Through the Fortinet SD-WAN solution, the company has been able to offer secure and highly available connectivity to these stations, since the platform activates the backup connection in case the main one fails. Before, if there was a downtime with the Internet link, the IT team would have to go on site and check what was going on. Today, they receive the report, while the solution automatically proceeds to connect the link that does work.


In terms of security, the level of most service stations was very basic, which is why multiple incidents occurred that put operations and information at risk. By choosing the Fortinet solution, the company deployed a network and cybersecurity architecture that includes perimeter security through FortiGates installed at each service station. In addition, the Fortinet Secure SD-Branch solution based on FortiSwitch and FortiAP devices was integrated, which provides security and stability to the wireless connectivity of service stations.


“Fortinet allows us to have reliable and secure online transactions. We have not experienced failures, and we have complete visibility and traceability of communications. We need this support to guarantee a very efficient operation for our clients”, mentions Edgar Díaz, General Manager of the ATIO® Hardware Division. “Given the new government regulations in Mexico, Fortinet has a comprehensive and scalable solution that helps us respond to market demands and provide adequate compliance to customers.”


Thanks to the flexibility and scalability of the solution, ATIO® can easily deploy Fortinet’s networking and security platform, as well as manage administration in minutes so that new sites receive the same configuration that you already have installed in other places.


Fortinet’s solution has allowed ATIO® to constantly make improvements to its customers’ operations and reduce the risk of an interruption in the availability of services at each service station. Through the FortiManager and FortiAnalyzer tools, they can collect information to create reports, take advantage of real-time visibility of the entire network to monitor its status, and manage security events and incidents for each site, with centralized alerts and notifications. “The Fortinet Security Fabric solution provides an instant record of what is happening on the network. This gives us the possibility to make timely and immediate decisions, optimize network performance and have greater control over incidents”, highlights Díaz.


Likewise, the ATIO® IT team now has more time for other tasks, since the administration of the Fortinet solution is easy and many of the elements are automated. Before, to implement security policies in several service stations it was necessary to visit each one of them. Today, management is done from one place and policies are immediately deployed to the required sites.


“The Fortinet Security Fabric solution allows us to optimize time and work, in addition to giving us greater autonomy over what we do,” says Díaz