Leading restaurant business secures high-speed wide area network (WAN) communications across UK and Ireland
SUNNYVALE, Calif., May 17, 2005 - Fortinet - the pioneer and market leader of Unified Threat Management and only provider of ASIC-accelerated, network-based antivirus firewall systems for real-time network protection - today announced that PizzaExpress, a leading European restaurant chain, has selected hundreds of Fortinet`s FortiGate systems to protect its headquarters against viruses and intrusion attempts, and provide secure virtual private network (VPN) communications between more than 300 restaurants based throughout the UK and Ireland.
Information technology (IT) plays an essential role in providing PizzaExpress` high level of service to 16 million customers who visit its restaurants annually. The company`s corporate wide area network (WAN) service enables vital operational and financial information to be securely transmitted over the Internet VPN connections between its restaurants and headquarters. In 2004, PizzaExpress implemented a network upgrade from ISDN to ASDL connectivity for faster, more reliable communication capabilities. Whilst this enabled greater productivity and cost efficiency, it also opened up the network to greater security risks through Internet transmission of sensitive business information. Although PizzaExpress has a contingency system in place, any long-term system downtime caused by viruses or other Internet security threats has the potential to cause significant business disruption. According to the latest ICSA Virus Prevalence Survey (2004), the average server downtime following a virus incident is 23 hours, which is time enough to perturb daily operations.
To ensure maximum uptime free of network security threats, PizzaExpress sought a robust security system to provide an encrypted VPN to enable safe communication between its restaurants and headquarters, as well as protect its network from Internet security threats. It evaluated various options, including a Cisco-based security system that charged per user fees, and in August 2004 selected Fortinet`s FortiGate antivirus firewalls.
Phil Fryer, Systems Manager, PizzaExpress Restaurants Ltd, said: "Our objective as an IT team is to ensure our maximum network performance and enable a smooth operation without network disruption. We chose the FortiGate systems for several reasons. The per-unit, as opposed to per-user, licensing structure made it a highly cost-effective option for us. We were also impressed with the ease-of-management for all of the ?best in class` security applications offered via the FortiGate systems. These applications offer us defense in depth to ensure that all traffic is protected against the myriad of security threats posed to networks today, with little need for human intervention. Since the deployment of FortiGate systems, the PizzaExpress network has been virus-free and experienced no major incidents, making it far more reliable than PizzaExpress` previous host-based software infrastructure."
To secure its ASDL-based WAN linking its headquarters and restaurants, PizzaExpress is using FortiGate-300 enterprise-class systems in a high-availability cluster at its head office in Uxbridge, UK and has begun deploying FortiGate-50A systems in each of its more than 300 restaurants throughout the UK and Ireland. PizzaExpress opted for a unified threat management (UTM) approach to security and is utilizing the virtual private network (VPN), antivirus, firewall, and intrusion prevention system (IPS) functionalities within Fortinet`s FortiGate security appliances as such.
Adam Stein, vice president of corporate marketing for Fortinet said: "The implementation of Fortinet`s best in class applications throughout PizzaExpress` mission critical business network demonstrates our unified threat management approach in action. PizzaExpress, as a leading retailer, immediately benefits from better network uptime, lower network exposure, constantly updated FortiGuard subscription services and the industry`s best total cost of ownership model. Fortinet is pleased to help PizzaExpress concentrate on the most essential element of their business - customer satisfaction."
For more information on Fortinet`s FortiGate Antivirus Firewalls, please visit: http://www.fortinet.com/products
About Fortinet (www.fortinet.com)
Fortinet is the confirmed leader of the Unified Threat Management market. The company`s award-winning FortiGate™ series of ASIC-accelerated antivirus firewalls, winner of the 2004 Security Product of the Year Award from Network Computing Magazine and the 2003 Networking Industry Awards Firewall Product of the Year, are the new generation of real-time network protection systems. They detect and eliminate the most damaging, content-based threats from e-mail and Web traffic such as viruses, worms, intrusions, inappropriate Web content and more in real time - without degrading network performance. FortiGate systems are the only security products that are quadruple-certified by the ICSA (antivirus, firewall, IPSec, NIDS), and deliver a full range of network-level and application-level services in integrated, easily managed platforms. Named to the Red Herring Top 100 Private Companies, Fortinet is privately held and based in Sunnyvale, California.