Government consulting group implements Lightstream cloud solution with minimal disruption and achieves massive cost savings

Prisma Cloud Security Accelerator deployed in two weeks saves time and costs while addressing crucial security and compliance needs

Business Challenges

A national consulting group, specializing in environmental consulting, provides community relations and geographic information systems (GIS) support on environmental and military munitions projects. Its primary source of business is government consulting contracts. They faced an issue many businesses can relate to: How can we transition to the cloud without serious impact to day-to-day operations and with limited internal resources?

Lack of Resources
Following the decision to migrate to the cloud, the organization was met with compliance concerns and security issues that it desperately needed to address, but lacked the internal resources to navigate.

Compliance Concerns
The group knew it wanted to transition to the cloud as it looked to the future. Its decision raised concerns and questions about compliance and security control. There was an added layer of dealing with significant government oversight. Time was of the essence to have required standards in place.

Tight Timeline with Minimal Downtime Requirement
Usually when an intricate system is implemented, businesses often need to slow or even halt day-to-day activities. It can have a major impact on revenue. The group needed a unique solution offering the strongest compliance and security strategy possible with minimal impact to daily operations and revenue.

The Lightstream Solution

Lightstream provides a crucial strategy, executing a security and compliance solution aligned to fit unique business practices and industry goals. The implementation, taking just two weeks, ensured massive cost savings and minimal interruptions to business operations.

Custom Plan
Lightstream’s signature Prisma Cloud Security Accelerator designed a custom plan for this consulting group. A team of experts studied the group’s overall business structure and mission to better identify business outcomes that allowed for the introduction of technology to further its goals. Lightstream also formulated a plan for seizing on those opportunities, focusing on the group’s existing infrastructure and practices.

Detailed Assessment
Lightstream provided a detailed assessment analyzing how the group’s environments were built. Our expertise was then used to guide our client to a cloud security and compliance solution tailored to its unique needs.

Rapid Deployment
The Prisma Cloud Security Accelerator lived up to its name, providing a best-in-class solution in two weeks with minimal interruptions to business operations. Typically, for a majority of solutions providers, this process would take one to two months to configure.

Our reliable model delivered a best-in-class solution, in just two weeks. As a comparison, implementation for such a comprehensive and intricate system typically takes other solutions providers one to two months.

Business Outcomes

Reliable Plan
Lightstream’s Prisma Cloud Security Accelerator allowed the consulting group to achieve a reliable, workable plan targeting its cloud security and compliance needs. Lightstream studied its business model in detail, flushing out outcomes that could be further streamlined. It strategically designed the process for implementing technology solutions to utilize the group’s existing infrastructure and resources it already had in place.

Cost Savings
The consulting group was able to resume operations with minimal impact to its day-to-day operations and revenue stream. Lightstream’s reliable model allowed for massive cost savings.

Tailor-Made Solutions
Lightstream’s Prisma Cloud Security Accelerator has an emphasis on customer service and attention to detail. It resulted in tailor-made solutions aligned with the organization’s unique needs and business practices.

Contract Information

Lightstream’s reliable model delivers a best-in-class solution that typically allows for massive cost savings and minimal interruption to business operations. When you need a complex, custom cloud solution to meet unique business needs, Lightstream is a partner of choice.

For more information on how Lightstream and Prisma Cloud Accelerator can create a winning solution for your business, visit https://www.lightstream.tech/.

Lightstream reduces company’s long-term expenses by designing customized cloud strategy

Leaning into our longstanding relationship with AWS, optimizes the environment, to secure a favorable agreement and ensure maximum cost savings

Business Challenges

For over 25 years, companies have relied on this global software development company for solutions to effectively manage quality events and processes. Users depend on them to save time, maximize efficiency, and reduce the occurrence of errors, through their Quality Management System and Manufacturing Excellence products. This organization needed an expert cloud services program perfectly tailored to fit its needs.

Overpaying for Services
Our client grew increasingly concerned it was overpaying for services under a prior agreement and missing out on strategic cost-saving opportunities.

Overwhelming Options
The company was faced with an overwhelming combination of services and applications to learn about and sort through for the best deal to fit its specific needs. It needed a plan with terms customized to its unique needs.

Need for Guidance
An expert in the space was needed to help gather data and calculate relevant and reliable forecasting models on future cloud usage needs.

The Lightstream Solution

Through Lightstream’s extensive expertise and longstanding relationship with cloud solutions partners, we were able to design our operations to better leverage AWS solutions and services, saving time and costs.

Extensive Expertise
Lightstream relied on its extensive expertise to gather data for their client. This helped the organization’s leaders, alongside Lightstream’s experts, decide on key services and terms that could optimize cloud costs. Lightstream also initiated an in-depth analysis of the company’s systems and technical operations. Data-driven figures were also used to better flesh out the essential resources, platforms and other tools it needed to efficiently operate its business.

Long-Term Projections
Lightstream prepared five-year projections, forecasting the company’s future compute and usage demands. The projections accounted for industry trends, the company’s growth plan and other variables. Lightstream processed this data and designed the most comprehensive and cost-effective plan for the company.

Reaching Full Potential
Lightstream discovered some areas of the company’s current solutions were not being used to their full potential or weren’t being used at all. Lightstream was able to better educate the team on the technology and ecosystem, which maximized future use.

Higher Discount Rate
Lightstream designed a plan with terms customized to the company’s needs, engaged available yet underutilized technology and negotiated better AWS EDP agreement terms with a higher discount rate.

Cost-Saving Consulting
The company asked Lightstream to source quotes from possible new solutions partners. Because of Lightstream’s expertise with cloud services EDPs, it confirmed the best outcome for the client’s unique circumstances would be to remain with Amazon Web Services. It encouraged the client to continue with its current ecosystem, ultimately saving time and money, had a switch occurred.

Business Outcomes

Steep Savings
Lightstream’s negotiation of more attractive EDP terms resulted in an increase in savings. This was possible because of Lightstream’s long standing relationship with AWS and their deep understanding of the client’s needs. Lightstream facilitated mutually beneficial negotiations.

Consistent Partnership
Instead of parting ways, AWS and the company entered a longer-term agreement, which in time, saves costs and increases efficiencies.

Leveraging Solutions
The company was able to design its operations to better leverage AWS solutions and services, saving time and costs.

Secure Long-Term Savings with Lightstream

If your company needs an expert to help analyze your business needs to create secure and interconnected cloud and network foundations, Lightstream is the partner of choice. With our in-depth industry expertise and longstanding relationships with some of the most innovative cloud solutions partners in the marketplace, we can make recommendations on next steps, contract terms and partnerships that save your organization time and costs. Contact us today to get started!

Lightstream’s Rapid Risk Profile helps clients protect what matters

Through security threat evaluation and expert recommendations, you can better understand your risks and meet your key security objectives

Business Challenges

Many organizations and their security teams are in desperate need for quick ways to evaluate the security threats associated with their accounts, identity & access management, logging, networking, storage and monitoring. With lean teams and lack of crucial security talent in the marketplace, Lightstream’s Rapid Risk Profile is solving some of the most challenging organizational security concerns.

Understanding Risk
Most businesses don’t know where to start when it comes to guaranteeing their cloud environments are optimized and completely secure. Lightstream provides a Rapid Risk Profile assessment to clients to improve their cloud environments.

Protecting What Matters
No matter where you do business, you want to connect your business assets, protect what matters and continually innovate and optimize.

Achieving Efficient Regulatory Compliance
Clients need to determine compliance within industry standard frameworks or regulatory compliance controls. Compliance reporting can be time consuming. However, businesses using Prisma Cloud benefit from a 90% reduction in the time it takes to conduct that reporting.

The Lightstream Solution

Risk detection is an easy and seamless process with Rapid Risk Profile. Discovery and mitigation timelines speed up, while Lightstream gains a full understanding of your environment in order to offer customized expert solutions for your organization’s needs.

Low-Touch, Low-Risk Assessment
Lightstream’s Rapid Risk Profile assessment is a low-touch, low-risk profile that supports up to three production accounts across a maximum of three public cloud platforms with real-time delivery. When you decide to complete the Lifestream Rapid Risk Profile, you’ll begin with a single one-hour remote meeting with the Lightstream Security Team. This assessment allows for Lightstream to complete the analysis without ever accessing your data during or after the session.

Quick Evaluation
The assessment quickly evaluates security threats associated with a client’s account, identity and access management, logging, networking, storage and monitoring. It provides a compliance summary report of the client’s environment against the Center for Internet Security (CIS) Critical Security Controls (CSC) framework.

Identify Gaps & Remediation
The assessment immediately identifies gaps within a client’s cyber security profile. The client then goes through a remediation process. Lightstream offers a variety of best-in-class solutions.

Four-Phase Approach
After completing the assessment, Lightstream offers a four-phase approach to implement a secure cloud environment.

  1. Define outcomes required.
  2. Create comprehensive plan and design tangible architecture that provides initial remediation.
  3. Create cloud platform that allows for secure deployment of applications in the cloud.
  4. Review will be delivered with hand-off and knowledge transfer to all key players.

Ongoing Monitoring & Support
The Lightstream team doesn’t stop there. Once the Rapid Risk Profile is completed and the four-phase approach is implemented, Lightstream is with you to continually monitor and manage your code security and cloud environment with our managed services options. Our team of highly trained experts will help you effectively balance risk and business outcomes.

Business Outcomes

Seamless Process
Risk detection is an easy and seamless process with Rapid Risk Profile. Discovery and mitigation timelines speed up, while Lightstream gains a full understanding of your environment in order to offer customized expert solutions for your cloud needs.

Top Security & Compliance
With Lightstream’s Cloud Managed Services (CMS), clients will have top security and compliance issues audited against best practices.

Reduced Financial Impact
Lightstream brings expert engineering support while reviewing the client’s cloud environment and making recommendations to reduce the financial impact of their cloud environment.

Risk Detection Made Easy with Lightstream Rapid Risk Profile
Our services platform and team of highly trained cloud, security, and networking experts will help you to effectively balance risk and business outcomes. The Lightstream Rapid Risk Profile is completed in a single one-hour web meeting with our security team. All access to your environment is performed by you. Lightstream has no access to your data during or after the analysis session. If you’re ready to get started, contact us for your complimentary assessment.

Lightstream’s Zero Trust Security Model prevents breaches and ransomware attacks

The 5-Step Model to Implementing Zero Trust

Strategic approach protects critical assets and reduces impact on any attacked areas

Business Challenges

A cyberattack or data breach is a nightmare scenario for every business or corporation. As cyberattacks become more automated and complex, IT and security departments face an event overload, lack of time and increasing staff cost. Once a data breach occurs, the clock is ticking.

Pressure to Respond Faster
Network administrators must be concerned with protecting their organizations from outsider threats, insider threats and malware. There is pressure to respond faster and mitigate threats before damage occurs.

In-house Talent Shortages
Cybersecurity is becoming increasingly difficult to manage in-house. Many IT and security departments have a shortage of trained and experienced security analysts.

Security Strategies Need to be Adaptable
The traditional security model is vulnerable. Organizations need a more advanced security strategy to reduce the time, cost and complexity of investigating and responding to security events and analyzing the root cause. Businesses need to lower risks and their impacts and achieve a higher return on investment for their cybersecurity spend.

The Zero-Trust Solution: Never Trust. Always Verify.

Lightstream takes the old phrase “trust, but verify” and flips it on its head with the Zero Trust Readiness Assessment. This is for businesses that don’t know where to start and is a strategic approach that helps prevent data breaches.

The Zero Trust Assessment Process
STEP 1:
To begin, the Zero Trust Readiness Assessment looks at three organizational groups:

  1. Strategic
  2. Managerial
  3. Operations

STEP 2: Based on the results, Lightstream assesses gaps to develop a plan. It offers best-in-class solutions with deep integration of the platform across leading vendors including Palo Alto Networks, Fortinet, Cisco, Amazon Web Services, Azure, Google and VMware. Our endpoint protection is based on Palo Alto Networks Traps to block security breaches and ransomware attacks before they compromise endpoints. It also builds on the revolutionary Palo Alto Networks Cortex XDR to provide Lifestream analysts and forensic specialists with threat intelligence, logs and data.

STEP 3: Within one week of completing the Zero Trust Readiness Assessment, you’ll receive a strategic advisory report. It will offer future improvements in the areas of strategic, managerial and operational levels. With that roadmap, you’ll have insight into your progress and next steps.

Addressing security challenges requires a fundamental shift in managed security services. Lightstream’s approach to cyber defense is focused on prevention and based on Zero Trust. Lightstream delivers the next generation of cloud-based security services in prevention, detection, response, forensics and threat-hunting.

Business Outcomes: Protect Your Critical Assets

The average cost of a data breach in the United States is $9.44 million[1]. Organizations with a Zero Trust security approach can potentially save $1.5 million compared to those that don’t, according to IBM Security’s “The Cost of a Data Breach Report.”[2]  With Lightstream’s Zero Trust Readiness Assessment, businesses can protect their critical assets and quickly reduce impacts of a cyberattack.

Make More Informed Security Decisions
The Zero Trust Readiness Assessment helps businesses make informed decisions about required actions, budgets and how to allocate resources. It’s developed using Zero Trust principles and enables execution of a quick and seamless strategy.

Ensure More Clarity Security Solution Implementation and Maintenance
Lightstream provides long-term and short-term recommendations to implement the Zero Trust model. Organizations also get clarity on how to implement and maintain their security policy with Zero Trust.

Get 24/7 Access to Elite Security Experts
Lightstream’s Zero Trust Readiness Assessment gives organizations 24/7 access to an elite team of security professionals – saving you time and money. You’re not alone on the path to better security.

What’s Next? Contact Lightstream
If you’re not quite sure where to begin when it comes to securing critical assets and creating a long-term security solution, Lightstream is here to help. You can start today with our Zero Trust Readiness Assessment. Contact us here.

 

 

[1] https://www.ibm.com/reports/data-breach

[2] https://www.securitymagazine.com/articles/98486-435-million-the-average-cost-of-a-data-breach

Lightstream closes major security gaps and provides efficient system for benefits brokerage and HR services firm

Lightstream Cloud Checker paves the way for better customer service and alleviates strain on team

Business Challenge

A benefits brokerage and HR services firm specializing in integrated technology solutions for small businesses had two main needs: More efficient systems and closing gaps in security. The firm focuses on providing the best benefits, HR and compliance management services on the market. Its signature concept is its integrated technology solution, which can manage an organization’s HR needs from recruitment to retirement.

Massive Strain on team
The benefits brokerage and HR services firm employs 80+ people and has an annual revenue of over $17 million but their growth in the last couple of years exploded which meant its cloud infrastructure was getting more complex. This put a massive strain on the team to manage the system and it became increasingly more involved and time consuming.

Gaps in Security
The other major concern involved security. The firm needed to find any gaps that put sensitive information at risk, including individuals’ medical histories.

You need somebody looking at your security environment on an ongoing basis. Lightstream does that for hundreds of customers. We have competencies and multiple cloud platforms. That’s what we do.

— Jim Cassell, Lightstream CEO

 

The Lightstream Solution

Lightstream Cloud Checker performed a thorough review of the firm’s existing infrastructure. It found several points of vulnerability. Through our solutions, the firm’s cloud infrastructure is now layered with security.

Expert-Level Education
Lightstream was also able to educate the firm on the benefits of Amazon Web Services (AWS). Its knowledge allows for this firm to function safely and with confidence because of the AWS installation.

Consistent Checkpoints and Transparent Communication
The partnership didn’t end at installation. Lightstream and the benefits brokerage meet monthly to review data generated by Cloud Checker to identify opportunities with and threats to the firm’s security and ways to better utilize AWS.

We love working with them. They’re very sharp. Any time we have questions, [we get] immediate answers. Peace of mind. We’re not alone, we feel like we’re covered.

— Director of Software Engineering, Global HR Services Firm

 

Business Outcomes

Better Customer Service and Decreased Employee Strain
Lightstream’s Cloud Checker solution paved the way for this firm to better serve its customers because its workers are no longer strained by a cumbersome cloud infrastructure. It also helped fortify the firm’s security to protect personal information and maintain trust with their clients.

Cost Transparency and Allocation
The cost is shared across departments. Lightstream provides the firm with a financial review with tagging so it’s able to link its use of AWS to specific operations within the organization. It’s a powerful visual tool that also adds depth as an expense, because rather than seeing one large, lump single sum amount owed, the cost is broken down as it is allocated across different departments.

Cost Savings and Optimization
The solutions implemented not only save costs but ensure continued optimization. Each month, our Lightstream team provides a server usage report that allows the client to turn off any unused servers and optimize what’s in play.

Next-Level Data Protection
No business wants to be publicizing to the world that it lost customers’ data. Lightstream’s monthly, in-depth system check identifies weaknesses and vulnerabilities to ensure continued improvements to security strategies, in real-time.

What’s Next? Partner With Lightstream

Innovative companies like yours need secure and interconnected cloud and network foundations. But building those can be a complex process. That’s where Lightstream comes in. Our expert team is ready to help your organization stay at the forefront of your industry. Contact us today about Lightstream Cloud Checker and how it can tighten security and create transparency for opportunities.

How Do I Survive a Ransomware Attack?

Who Does Ransomware Target?

Ransomware attacks are no longer affecting enterprises only. They’re spreading to organizations of all sizes, maturities, and even across industries. Why? It’s profitable.

Many mid-market businesses have a false sense of security that ransomware attacks only happen to big corporations with millions to pay in ransom. But both enterprise and mid-market companies have valuable data attackers can hold for ransom.

How Do I Protect My Business?

(LINK) Protect your business using the 5 Ps of Preparedness approach:

  1. Program. Work with IT to align your cybersecurity program with your ransomware strategy to minimize the operational and financial impact of a ransomware incident.
  2. Policy. Work with leadership and the board to create a policy that explains how you will approach ransomware, including if your business will attempt to make a payment.
  3. Plan. Your plan should be concise, comprehensive, and simple. Who will provide external support, who will you empower to make decisions, and who will execute your plan?
  4. People. Identify strategic partners within your organization and external parties and clearly define their roles, inform them of their responsibility, and document their contact information.
  5. Practice. Consistently test your ransomware strategy to understand your ability to organize, execute, and improve response capabilities. This will ensure your preparedness.

What is the Ransomware Lifecycle?

Understand the ransomware lifecycle to prepare for and resolve it as quickly as possible. 

  1. Infection. Ransomware finds its way into corporate assets through phishing emails, a misconfigured cloud asset, and the exploitation of your open vulnerabilities.
  2. Communication. Ransomware communicates back to its control network, where attackers determine how they’ll attack your network.
  3. Discovery. Built-in mechanisms discover specific types of sensitive information for ransom, identify defensive measures, and help attackers maximize their impact.
  4. Data exfiltration and backup destruction. Ransomware components silently corrupt and disable backups and steal sensitive information.
  5. Encryption. Attackers silently and selectively encrypt your data, making your systems and data useless without decryption.
  6. Ransom demand. Ransomware attackers make ransom demands (typically in Bitcoin) to get your data back.
  7. Negotiation. Some ransomware attackers will negotiate.
  8. Decryption. You can pay the ransom to get the decryption keys, but there’s no guarantee attackers won’t leak or re-encrypt your data.

Top 3 Initial Infection Vectors

  • Phishing emails
  • Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) exploitation
  • Software vulnerabilities exploitation

How Can Technology Help?

Apply a zero-trust security strategy to empower your security teams and leadership to move faster and more securely. At its core, zero trust believes we should not inherently trust any interaction, at any level. It focuses on setting up systems and applications that protect themselves from every other system, allowing them to defend against attacks by minimizing the impact of any single compromise or attack. 

NIST CSF

Five areas of the NIST CSF to include if your cybersecurity and ransomware strategy:

  1. Identify. Operationalized identification, detection, and classification of critical and sensitive data
  2. Protect. Data and individual asset protection that prevent known threats and attack patterns
  3. Detect. Operationalized cyber attack and malicious software detection
  4. Respond. Integrated technology platforms that detect ransomware rapidly to contain it
  5. Recover. Recovery strategy that can scale

Conclusion

Are you prepared to defend against ransomware attacks? At Lightstream, we have helped customers build effective strategies to empower them to fight against ransomware attacks, and we can do the same for you.

We’ll assess your current strategies, build upon them, and help you mitigate as much risk as possible by preparing for and setting up the proper technologies to fight ransomware attacks.



How Do I Migrate to AWS?

Why you should move to the AWS cloud?

Modernize your infrastructure and drive business transformation, respond quickly to ever changing demands from employees and customers, boost innovation…

Modern operational practices improve results :

  • 20% average infrastructure cost savings
  • 69% reduction in unplanned downtime
  • 43% fewer security incidents per year

Migration & Transfer on AWS – Migrate to AWS and see business results faster

Clearly, migrating to AWS is good for business. But successful migrations take planning and expertise, as well as an understanding of the challenges you’re likely to face as part of the process. By understanding those challenges, the pitfalls that can result when they aren’t fully addressed, and the possible solutions to smooth your way forward, you’ve taken the first step on your cloud migration journey.

How do I migrate to the cloud?

What is the AWS MAP process?

Use the MAP (Migration Acceleration Program) to assess, mobilize, migrate and modernize (How do I migrate?):

AWS wants you to have a great experience, so we provide assessment tools that help determine if you’re ready to migrate to the cloud (cloud readiness)

Conclusion:

Ready to migrate to AWS? We’re here to help you migrate to the cloud
Lightstream is an AWS Advanced Consulting Partner → our AWS-certified engineers and architects have years of experience assisting and driving migrations of all sizes.

We’ll assess how ready you are to migrate to AWS and plan a course of action.

LIGHTSTREAM Joins MICROSOFT INTELLIGENT SECURITY ASSOCIATION as a Managed Security Service Provider

Lightstream is a member of MISA

Salt Lake City, UT (March 29, 2022) — Lightstream,   a managed security solutions provider, is pleased to announce their membership in the Microsoft Intelligent Security Association (MISA). MISA is an ecosystem of independent software vendors and managed security service providers that have integrated their security solutions with Microsoft to better defend against a world of increasingly sophisticated, fast-moving threats.

Lightstream was nominated to MISA as a managed security service  provider (MSSP) for their Managed Detection and Response solutions with Microsoft 365  and Microsoft’s cloud security offerings. This membership strengthens Lightstream’s relationship with Microsoft and broadens the range of high value solutions that drive increased customer value.

Jim Cassel, Co-CEO of Lightstream, shares

It is a privilege to be nominated to the Microsoft Intelligent Security Association and join the top security partners as we align in our commitment to cybersecurity. The timing is paramount as organizations globally will continue to face growing cybersecurity attacks and data breaches in today’s complex environments. Lightstream has the advantage of MISA support to extend, develop and improve cutting-edge security solutions to customers globally.

“Microsoft Intelligent Security Association members leverage Microsoft’s security products to better defend against cyber security threats with identity and access management, threat protection, information protection, and security management,” says Rob Lefferts, Corporate Vice President, Microsoft Defender.

Lightstream Managed Security Services elevates customer success by rapidly improving security outcomes while meeting complex compliance requirements and continually optimizing desired business outcomes. Lightstream’s security and threat protection solution suite offers include Defender for Microsoft 365, Defender for Cloud, Defender for Endpoint, Defender for Cloud Apps, Defender for Identity and XDR capabilities. Lightstream also offers a comprehensive portfolio of cloud, endpoint, and on-premises risk mitigation solutions  focused on operational, technical, and financials risk.

To learn more, visit Microsoft Intelligent Security Association.

For information on Lightstream services and solutions, visit Lightstream.tech

About Lightstream

Lightstream provides full-service cloud, connectivity, and security solutions to enterprises worldwide with a focus on managed services for all three, as well as cloud infrastructure implementation, security, and support.

Lightstream has been named multiple times as a Palo Alto Networks Public Cloud Partner of the Year, and is an AWS Security Competency Partner, an AWS Advanced Consulting Partner, and a Microsoft Cloud Platform Gold Partner with Security Competency. Visit us at http://www.lightstream.tech or LinkedIn.

Media Contact

Daniel Davenport / dan.davenport@lightstream.tech