CxC Connectivity by Convergia
CxC Connectivity by Convergia

Deploying a secure network to connect all of Peru 

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SENATI is the largest technical and technological higher education school in Peru. For 58 years, it has been the institution where young people who want to dedicate themselves to industrial and technical activities in the country are educated and trained. Its impact is crucial, considering that Peru is a country that bases its economy fundamentally on the manufacturing industry and the exploitation of natural resources, so the demand for trained technical professionals is high. That is why they have 83 offices in the 24 departments of Peru.

THE CHALLENGE

To allow the operation of this great school at the national level, which is attended by approximately 90,000 students, SENATI has a teaching and administrative staff made up of 5,000 people. The geographical breadth and needs that such a large institution implies represent a challenge for the Information Technology (IT) area of SENATI. Connecting safely and efficiently all the institution’s headquarters nationwide to ensure the proper functioning of its operations is key.

 

To meet this complex suite of needs, SENATI evaluated different software and equipment tests that would allow them to solve this technological challenge safely, but at the same time easily and with the same quality of connectivity throughout the country, especially in provinces where the bandwidth has high shortcomings.

THE SOLUTION

“We ran tests, but most of the solutions had separate software and hardware. That was our main concern, having two computers or two instances to be able to control the optimization of bandwidth”, indicates Zamudio. Looking for more efficient alternatives, they tested and ultimately decided to use Fortinet’s FortiGate Fortinet SD-WAN solution. “One of the reasons we decided to work with Fortinet SD-WAN is that it was embedded in the hardware and didn’t have to be separated in any instance. Having Fortinet teams allowed the integration and migration to this technology to be easier ”, he specifies.

 

The efficiency with security is what they achieved at SENATI. “Fortinet is a security company, while some vendors weren’t necessarily dedicated to security. It is an advantage to work with a company that specializes in the field”, reaffirms Zamudio.

 

Since the implementation of Fortinet’s FortiGate Fortinet SD-WAN solution at SENATI’s national offices, the operational processes of this institution are managed with high connectivity. “The solution allows us to control the entrance and exit of the students, the communications between the administrative part of the province and the main headquarters, and the security of the exits through the Wi-Fi access points. In addition, we have a FortiManager that controls all the communications of the security teams that work with the teams that are in charge of analyzing the communication infrastructure. These are complex but easy-to-manage processes that cannot fail if we want to ensure the proper functioning of the education service offered by SENATI. Now they are better served with a good bandwidth offered by the FortiGate Fortinet SD-WAN”, continues Zamudio.

 

ADDED VALUE BY COMBINING OPTIMIZATION AND SECURITY

Using Fortinet’s FortiGate Fortinet SD-WAN, SENATI’s IT team immediately identified the difference and added value by combining optimization and security. On the one hand, they managed to improve the connection of the provincial headquarters, where the quality of regular connectivity services is not the best.

“In the province, we have greater challenges. If the service is not good, we will not be able to enroll students, teachers will not be able to pass attendance, and students will not be able to make arrangements at the system level. For this reason, what we require of the product is that, if there is a downtime in one channel, it is automatically redirected to another without the user knowing that they are working in another channel. This is what we have found with Fortinet”, highlights SENATI’s IT manager.

On the other hand, Willy Zamudio points out that with Fortinet’s FortiGate Fortinet SD-WAN, they have managed to optimize bandwidth nationwide by 60 percent, thanks to directing consumption to places where it is specifically needed. “When we didn’t have nationwide Fortinet-based security, our bandwidth consumption was quite high. First, because we did not optimize the internet service, and second, because we did not have visibility of what was happening. Now, by having these variables controlled, we can allocate bandwidth to certain routes. Knowing the parameters used by students when browsing is essential to be able to direct the bandwidth towards the sites they need ”, he continues.

Finally, having a solution focused on security gives SENATI the peace of mind of being able to monitor and reduce the impact of possible incidents. “Students make us have different challenges every day because they normally try to get past security barriers. In the IT administrative part, we take care to control that our students do not receive threats or attacks from different places. To control these risks, we have found an ally in Fortinet”, concludes the SENATI IT manager.