Intelligent CIO Middle East Issue 59 - Page 59


Marina Pharmacy Group LLC is a UAE-based retailer of pharmaceutical medicines and over the-counter products . Established in 2001 , the pharmacy group has quickly emerged as one of the leading pharmaceutical retailers in the country with stores across Dubai and Abu Dhabi .

The Marina Pharmacy footprint consists of 40 retail stores , 500 employees and a head office . Initially , the company had a high-end router that it was using at all locations along with a site-to-site VPN for retail sales transactions .
The company said being in a sector that is most vulnerable to IT security breaches , it needed to protect each outlet ’ s point-of-sale ( PoS ) systems from advanced and zero-day malware attacks .
Having looked around for suitable firewall technology and solutions currently in the market , the search was on for Marina Pharmacy Group to find a UTM firewall that offered a robust perimeter and comprehensive remote office security over a single platform .
Tareq Abdulrasheed , IT Head , Marina Pharmacy Group , said the company was expanding both organically and strategically to become a leading pharmaceutical retailer in the UAE , while maintaining a singular customer experience for all its outlets in various locations across the country .
Abdulrasheed said it was equally important during this period of growth to provide consistent security , such as a strong firewall defence , reliable security , monitoring and compliance services to all the branches .
“ In an ever-changing threat landscape , especially in the retail industry , where uptime of systems is critical , it ’ s important that Marina Pharmacy Group is at the forefront of securing its environment . We are not a technology company , but , similar to most other organisations in this sector , we rely heavily on technology to run our core business . Any disruptions that prevent someone from doing their job efficiently is an immense problem ,” he said .
He explained that prior to the SonicWall next-generation firewall implementation , the
company narrowly avoided an attack at the head office and thankfully the IT team was working late that day and noticed something was odd and managed to disconnect the networks before any real damage was done .
Abdulrasheed explained that : “ We relied on our local partner for advice and expertise on the available security products and options . Upon their recommendation , we decided to proceed with SonicWall offerings . Initially , a high-end router flinger was used at all the locations along with a site-to-site virtual private network ( VPN ) for retail sales transactions .”
• No ransomware or any attacks since deployment
• Complete network control , including individual endpoints
• Complete email control and junk mail filters
• Complete Wi-Fi security and control
• Daily reports showing all data transfers and flow of data
• VPN network for the complete organisation for ease of data transfer and security www . intelligentcio . com INTELLIGENTCIO