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Pacific National partner Fortinet, Ip.Glass securing assets
Wed, 3rd May 2023

Fortinet has announced that Pacific National, the largest private rail freight operator in Australia, with partner Ip.Glass, has deployed Fortinet Secure SD-Branch and Secure SD-WAN (software-defined wide area networking) to safeguard its critical infrastructure against cyber threats while boosting secure network access for reliable operations, halving its annual networking costs.

With over 86 sites and over 5,000 endpoints on the local area network (LAN), Pacific National faced network challenges that hindered its ability to modernise its transportation management system (TMS) with best-of-breed components. The company's traditional hub-and-spoke private multiprotocol label switching (MPLS) network was expensive, offered limited bandwidth and redundancy, and was not responsive enough to support Pacific National's mission-critical applications.

To address its network challenges, Pacific National worked with Fortinet's trusted partner and network and security services provider, Ip.Glass, to deploy a comprehensive Fortinet Secure SD-Branch and Secure SD-WAN solution. The solution included a FortiGate next-generation firewall (NGFW), FortiSwitch switch, FortiAP wireless access points at all 86 sites, and FortiExtender cellular gateways at sites with 4G and 5G access. In addition, several firewalls, proxies, and routers in the data centre were upgraded to Fortinet solutions.

“The SD-WAN project was an absolute joy, working with Ip.Glass and Fortinet, giving our engineers new technology to play with, and being able to modernise the technology across our whole network landscape from a data centre and site perspective. We see Ip.Glass as an extension of our IT team; their engineers really understand our business and our network, they came to every site with us, and they've shown a passion for it,” says Steve Carroll, information technology infrastructure manager at Pacific National. 

With the Fortinet Secure SD-Branch solution, Pacific National has achieved impressive results, including a 50% reduction in annual networking costs, improved security posture with granular security controls, and better network traffic visibility.

“By deploying Fortinet, we’re cutting our entire network costs in half,” adds Paul Williams, CIO, Pacific National.

The solution has also led to: an enhanced user experience and better employee health and well-being at remote sites; improved network performance, redundancy, and resilience; and the ability to provide connectivity to new sites in a matter of days rather than months.

With Fortinet's solution, Pacific National could deploy redundant connections and provide Wi-Fi with higher bandwidth and faster internet speed. And, in the event of a network outage, Pacific National now has the added benefit of a reliable 4G connection to ensure uninterrupted connectivity.

As a result of the project, Pacific National has significantly reduced network outages due to deploying a highly redundant solution, including multiple active-active internet links to each site. The combination of links has been designed to provide carrier-level redundancy and a mix of wired and wireless internet links. Remote locations, such as Cook in South Australia and other sites, also significantly benefit from the Starlink satellite connection providing low latency high-speed connection in the areas not serviceable by NBN, fibre, and 4G technologies.

“At Ip.Glass, we’re thrilled to have worked closely with Fortinet and Pacific National to provide a comprehensive networking solution that facilitated the modernisation of its network infrastructure. Our engineers meticulously assessed Pacific National’s unique business needs and, together with Fortinet’s Secure SD-Branch and Secure SD-WAN solution, designed and implemented a tailored solution that met the company’s requirements. As a trusted Fortinet partner, we're committed to delivering innovative solutions that enable our clients to achieve their business objectives,” notes Semyon Taskin, managing director at Ip.Glass.

“At Fortinet, we recognise the importance of safeguarding critical infrastructure and protecting sensitive data against cyber threats. Our partnership with Ip.Glass lets us provide Pacific National with our cutting-edge solution, ensuring the highest level of network security and performance. We are proud to have played a crucial role in helping Pacific National modernise its infrastructure and maintain secure, reliable operations,” says Tim Fitzgerald, channel director at Fortinet.

“As the world becomes increasingly interconnected and reliant on digital technologies, the importance of resilient and secure critical infrastructure only continues to grow. For more than a decade, Fortinet has been at the forefront of protecting operational technology (OT) environments in critical infrastructure sectors such as energy, defence, manufacturing, food and beverage, and transportation, providing robust and reliable security solutions that let these sectors operate safely and securely in the digital age. Pacific National can now confidently execute its systems' modernisation strategy with Fortinet's solution in place.”