NRMA keeps email attacks at bay using Mimecast's SaaS security controls

NRMA recently partnered up with Mimecast -- which has opened up two local datacentres and a Sydney office -- to address the frequent email attacks it was unable to filter.
Written by Aimee Chanthadavong, Contributor

When NRMA Motoring and Services opted to use Microsoft Office 365 as their choice of email environment nearly 18 months ago, it also exposed the company to falling victim to a number of online attacks.

Paul Bendevski, NRMA Motoring and Services infrastructure services manager, described the introduction of Office 365 as an "interesting journey" where there were some issues when it came to its filtering solutions.

Bendevski outlined some of these issues the company came across included being exposed to various ransomware, spear phishing, and cryptolock. In turn, the company was spending up to 10 hours a week tactically trying to manage the virus and attacks, which occurred quite regularly, Bendevski said.

Ralph de Veer, NRMA senior infrastructure engineer, added at one point when hoax emails disguised as the Australian Federal Police and Australia Post were being sent, people in the company were opening them.

"People were literally thinking they were in trouble, which is quite natural. But no matter how much we train end users, it still wasn't getting to us to where we wanted to be."

As a result of the "not so pleasant experiences", Bendevski said it forced the company to go to market for a product that would be able to able to assist. Since February, NRMA has partnered with Mimecast for its security, backup, and continuity services to help address its email issues.

The company said within the next 12 months it will look at possibly opting into Mimecast's archiving services.

To meet the growing demands of its local customers, Mimecast has opened two replicated datacentres in separate collocated facilities in New South Wales. The datacentres will support Microsoft Exchange, Office 365, and Google email environments. The opening brings Mimecast's company's global datacentre footprint to 10.

The company has confirmed that its first customers are now live on its Australian datacentres, with more than 50 customers expected to migrate data before the end of the year.

Additionally, the company recently opened an office in Sydney, which houses its sales and marketing team for the local market. Since opening the new office, the company has increased its total headcount to 22 from 12.

The Sydney office is in addition to company's existing Melbourne office that has been focused on providing the local market with tech support.

Mimecast co-founder and CEO Peter Bauer said the opening of its datacentres and Sydney office is proof of the company's commitment to the Australian market, the fourth market for the company to enter.

"It's because strategically Australia is a launch pad for us to develop capabilities to enter the broader APAC market," he said. "But also, we've setup a support centre in Melbourne which is a key part of our global support operations for our 14,000 customers on a global basis. So our local presence here is very important to us operationally to us as well."

But Mimecast aren't the only ones expanding their datacentres, Fujitsu has announced that it will be investing AU$12.2 million to upgrade the power infrastructure and internal capacity of its western Sydney datacentre (WSDC).

As part of the six month project with Connect Infrastructure due to commence in early August, two 33kV high voltage feeders will be installed, which will run in two separate underground routes approximately 3.5 km each from the Blacktown Endeavour Energy Transmission Station to the datacentre. The upgrade is expected to provide an additional 30MVA of power capacity to the site.

Fujitsu today announced it had posted a 27.3 billion yen first quarter operating loss on the back of a slump in Japanese PC sales.

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