Virus insurance

Emirates Insurance is one of the largest insurance companies in the United Arab Emirates, but until recently it found itself at the mercy of frequent attacks and over zealous antivirus suites.

Tags: ESET Middle East (Adaox Ltd)Emirates Insurance Company
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Virus insurance
By  Ben Furfie Published  November 25, 2010

Emirates Insurance is one of the largest insurance companies in the United Arab Emirates, but until recently it found itself at the mercy of frequent attacks and over zealous antivirus suites. Today it explains how it solved the issues that threatened to swamp its small IT department.

Viruses. They are a perenial problem for CIOs, as is the software that is suppose to protect their IT infrastructure. Frequent complains revolve around sluggish performance, poor detection rates and software that tends to cause more crashes and errors than the things it is supposed to protect their computers and network against.

This was the problem that faced Emirate Insurance. Faced with frequent infections, software that crashed the network more often than it protected it, and an overwhelming number of support ticket requests for the small four man team, the company’s IT department decided it was time to consider another antivirus solution to replace the Symantec solutions it had been using.

“We had a lot of problems to do with viruses not being caught, and then the network being down because of it, PCs running slowly because the antivirus solution took up inordinate amounts of RAM, and users getting annoyed because of all of it,” reveals Shah Ata Ahmed. “It was all the motivation we needed as a company to begin looking at other solutions on the market.”

After comparing all of the available solutions available, the company decided to test ESET’s NOD32 platform.

“We originally moved over to ESET NOD32 when it was still relatively new to the Middle East and Europe. At the time, Symantec and McAfee were market leaders, which we found strange as our test had shown that both were the worst when it came to overusing resources,” adds Ahmed. “We were keen to move away from Symantec, so finding a solution that was light on resources, while giving us good antivirus capabilities. It also had to be robust enough to be rolled out in an enterprise environment.”

The response it got from the vendor surprised the company. “ESET was extremely helpful,” says Ahmed. “At the time, it was still new to the market and was extremely keen to help us evaluate its software. It offered us full versions of the software to roll out across our network on a trial basis with no commitment to purchase it at the end of it. That gave us a lot of confidence about its solution.”

The company was extremely happy with the solution, and has been using ESET’s solution for the past four years. Last month it upgraded to ESET’s latest enterprise solution, NOD32 Antivirus Business Edition.

“Since rolling NOD32 out, we haven’t had a single virus outbreak on the network,” reveals Ahmed. “It has been very robust in terms of dealing with viruses and intrusions. It has also meant that we’ve seen an end to when the network was down, not because of a virus or other piece of malware, but because of the antivirus suite itself.”

The latest version has brought with it additional benefits aimed at enterprises.
“We use ESET’s mirror server solution to minimise the disruption to users. As far as they are aware, nothing has happened, there has been no update and no inteferance from the antivirus. The trick is that the server solution constantly checks for updates and patches and collects the latest data on the server. Once a user logs in, it pushes the update to them all at once so instead of finding that their computer is becoming locked up during the day searching for updates, they don’t notice a thing,” says Ahmend. “It’s cut down on the number of users trying to turn the antivirus off because of it getting in the way of them being able to do their job.”

The software, and its features, has had another benefit he explains. “Since we adopted NOD32, we’ve found that the number of help tickets from users concerning viruses has dropped to almost zero – not just because the software does such a good job at protecting our systems, but also because it is much friendlier to the PC’s resources.”

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