Hawaii Businesses Turn to Hawaiian Telcom for Network Security and Compliance Concerns

March 14, 2016  |  James Fritz

For this article, I sat down with Matt Freeman, Senior Manager, IP & Managed Services, Hawaiian Telcom to hear his story about deploying AlienVault USM in his company's Managed Network and Security Services Program. There is also a complete case study available.

Hawaiian Telcom was founded long before the Internet. In 1883, when King David Kalakaua commissioned what would become one of the nation’s oldest telephone companies, cybersecurity was certainly not a concern.

Today Hawaiian Telcom is Hawaii’s technology leader, providing integrated communications, broadband, data center and entertainment solutions for business and residential customers statewide. Services include Internet, video, voice, wireless, data network solutions and security, colocation and managed network and cloud services supported by the reach and reliability of Hawaiian Telcom’s next-generation fiber network and a 24/7 state-of-the-art, Hawaii-based network operations center.

When Hawaiian Telcom launched Managed Network and Security Services in 2010, we quickly realized that we needed a security management platform that could support us effectively in monitoring and maintaining network security for our business customers. This need would eventually bring us to AlienVault and their Unified Security Management (USM) platform.

Our business customers represent a range of sizes and industries, and each one has a unique set of security needs. Many of them collect sensitive or personally identifiable information (PII) and must maintain compliance with Payment Card Industry Data Security Standards (PCI DSS), Health Insurance Portability and Accountability (HIPAA) and other standards. As a provider of Managed Network and Security Services, Hawaiian Telcom helps customers ensure compliance and protect themselves from data theft, malware and other cybersecurity threats.

Shortly after we started providing Managed Network and Security Services, we began to notice a couple of key trends. One was that many customers were in need of a log tracking solution that could allow them to keep a close eye on exactly who was logging into their systems, what they were doing, and how they were getting in. Although the need came about largely because of PCI DSS mandates, which require companies to exhibit this capability, it also happens to be an extremely important indicator of overall security – according to a Verizon report[1], more than 90% of companies who had been breached did not have these controls in place.

Another trend that we noticed involved the rising cost of the individual security solutions that are necessary to serve our customers. We needed to have different point solutions in order to take inventory of assets, scan for and address vulnerabilities, update and guard against a rapidly growing list of security threats, and respond to any intrusions as they were happening.

After exploring a series of options, we identified AlienVault’s USM platform as the best solution for our unique needs. The USM platform offered a combination of tools to monitor and manage customer networks on a single dashboard, which enhanced our team’s efficiency and reduced our operating expenses.

Its solid security information and event management (SIEM) platform has a number of critical built-in security capabilities, such as asset discovery, behavioral monitoring, vulnerability assessment, managed firewalls and intrusion detection. This functionality is integrated into a unified platform that is easy to use and backed by a dedicated customer support team. Hawaiian Telcom offers our customers the most up-to-date network security services supported by AlienVault Labs, which actively tracks and analyzes millions of threats to deliver the latest intelligence directly to the USM platform.

In a recent case, our Managed Network and Security Services team saw some unusual activity appear on the dashboard of a customer who subscribes to our network monitoring service. We quickly identified it as potential malware and found that the entry point was email-based and that the threat was affecting workstations at 5 different locations across multiple Hawaiian islands. We immediately contacted the customer and initiated their incident response plan, blocking outbound traffic for those workstations at the switch level and helping the customer trigger their cleanup procedures. Thanks to our SIEM alarms, intrusion detection system and the quick action of our team of security experts, damage to the customer’s systems was minimal.

This is just one of the many examples of how AlienVault’s USM platform has enhanced Hawaiian Telcom’s Managed Network and Security Services operation. We’ve accelerated our detection and response capabilities, reduced our operating expenses and improved efficiencies. Businesses of every size and scope can turn to Hawaiian Telcom for assistance with their managed network security needs and industry compliance concerns.


[1] Verizon 2015 Data Breach Investigations Report: http://www.verizonenterprise.com/DBIR/2015/

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