Managing the personal data of 25% of California’s educational population, a statewide budget of more than $20 billion, and payroll for 150,000+ employees is no easy task. Factor in transferring data to and from banks, vendors, disaster recovery sites, and upwards of 160 remote sites, and you are faced with an around-the-clock operation in need of 24x7x365 data security. Where does an agency begin in its steps to manage and secure the multitude of data constantly being stored, backed up, and exchanged?
This was the question the Los Angeles-based governmental agency was facing when it discovered MegaCryption. The cryptography toolkit from Advanced Software Products Group, Inc. MegaCryption was designed to be extremely flexible to accommodate a variety of environments, experience levels, encryption methods, and security policies. The agency’s Mainframe Manager explains, “The agency transfers payroll-related and vendor-related payment data to and from the banks over a secure link. For disaster recovery services the agency uses an outside vendor. Since it is not practical to install secure links between the DR center and the banks, the agency needed to come up with an alternative solution. Our solution was to send and receive the data via the Internet using secure FTP with encryption. The encryption software used by the banks is PGP. Therefore, the agency needed to find a software product to perform encryption that could run on its IBM mainframe.”
“Features of MegaCryption Not Available with Other PGP Products”
Once the agency identified its need for an encryption solution, they began an analysis of PGP products that run on z/OS. MegaCryption offered support for the most secure non-proprietary and well-known algorithms available, ensuring security and compatibility with cryptography standards. Additional key factors in the agency choosing an encryption product were to find one that was fully supported (24×7), had ease of installation, provided no cost agents for customer sites (allowing them to send encrypted files to the agency), and possessed the ability to support the three approved protocols (RACF, ICSF, and Data Set) for storing of security keys. After trialing MegaCryption, the Mainframe Manager at the governmental agency stated, “MegaCryption satisfied all requirements.”
In addition to satisfying all the agency’s requirements, the Mainframe Manager immediately discovered that MegaCryption outshone the competition with its array of functionality options and its rapid implementation. He stated, “MegaCryption was the easiest to install and implement. We had it installed and up and running in one day. Some features that were part of MegaCryption were not available with the other products, such as ICSF support.”
“Securely Transfer Files Without Additional Cost”
A file-level cryptography tool, MegaCryption provides a comprehensive, cost-effective approach to encrypting virtually any file in your z/OS environment, while complementing any communication level encryption process you may already have in place. While the banks with who the agency exchanged data had encryption, this was not often the case with remote sites. The z/OS Manager attests, “Some of the remote sites transfer payroll-related data to us via a CD. With MegaCryption we have begun transferring this data over the Internet using secure FTP with encryption to streamline and improve efficiency. If any of these remote sites do not have PGP we can provide them with that capability utilizing PartnerConnect.”
PartnerConnect, the courtesy software for your business partners, allows remote sites to handle MegaCryption encrypted data with zero expense.
Since the data is stored in an encrypted format on the agency’s mainframe, the data remains secure before, during, and after the FTP transmission. While every feature of MegaCryption is vital to the agency, the Manager stated, “PartnerConnect offers the greatest potential benefit to the agency with the ability to securely transfer files between the IBM Mainframe and the upwards of 160 remote sites without incurring additional cost.”
“Very Good Technical and Sales Support Factored into Decision”
ASPG, Inc., much like the Los Angeles governmental agency, operated on a 24x7x365 schedule to provide our customers with the highest quality support found in the industry. While ASPG, Inc. met the agency’s round-the-clock support requirement, the Mainframe Manager also factored the excellent technical and sales support during the POC, as well as the accessible and informative product documentation, into the agency’s decision. He stated, “During the POC, the support provided by Advanced Software Products Group (ASPG) was very good. The tech support team was responsive to our questions and assisted in our testing. The sales team worked with us to obtain the best possible pricing. The documentation is very good as is technical support. This was factored into our decision to select MegaCryption.”
“We Now Have a Secure Solution”
As demonstrated in the case of the Los Angeles governmental agency, whether your company chooses to secure entire files or specific fields, on-site data or data transmissions, MegaCryption can help. MegaCryption allowed the governmental agency to significantly increase security, dramatically decrease additional cost agents, and eliminate all frame relays on the mainframe. The agency, and all those whose data it protects, has a secure solution in MegaCryption.
The Mainframe Manager explains, “With MegaCryption the agency eliminated the secure links between us and te banks; MegaCryption allows the agency to use the Internet vs. a secure link to transfer and receive files. This has allowed us to eliminate all frame relays on the mainframe, and now we have a secure solution for both our production file transfers and file transfers from our disaster recovery center.”
TRUSTED SOLUTIONS FROM ADVANCED SOFTWARE PRODUCTS GROUP, INC.
ASPG is an industry-leading software development company with IBM, Microsoft, and GSA certifications. For over 25 years they have been producing award-winning software for data centers and mainframes, specializing in data security, storage administration, and systems productivity, providing solutions for a majority of the GLOBAL 1000 data centers.