Acme Brick Lays the Foundation for Cloud Security with Forcepoint CASB
Building supply company modernizes security with Forcepoint
Long known for its eponymous red bricks, 130-year-old Acme Brick is now a building supply leader that relies on technology to speed up processes like stacking bricks or monitoring equipment in the field. Lacking visibility into employee usage of cloud apps, Acme sought a cloud security solution to be its eyes and ears. Introduced to Forcepoint by trusted advisor Cyber Watch Systems, Acme chose Forcepoint CASB to glean insight into allowed and unauthorized activity and pave the way to a cloud-first security strategy for user and data protection.
- Lack of visibility to both authorized applications, such as Box.net and Microsoft Office 365, and unauthorized activities.
- Governance and reporting for regulatory compliance such as PCI DSS.
- Training for employees inadvertently or intentionally violating corporate IT and security policies.
- Selected Forcepoint CASB after two-week workshop.
- Analytics provide risk-prioritized alerts for SOC and incident response teams.
- Granular control and governance over any cloud application.
- Access to reporting that can meet internal and external audit requirements.
- Pragmatic planning in place for data protection across web, email, network, and cloud.
Acme Brick is part of the American fabric as much as Carnegie Hall and Coca-Cola; all three were born in 1891. Now, with 14 manufacturing plants that press out more than 1 billion bricks a year and 91 locations across the U.S., Acme Brick is relying more on the innovative application of technology, from the factory floor to your courtyard. As its employees transitioned to using cloud-based services like Box.net and Office 365, the company needed its security to move to the cloud. Acme Brick wanted to shine a light on unauthorized activities, stop potential data leakage or theft, and make the web safe for employees working from home.
“Technology is in everything we do, and we were doubling, tripling our content and data going into the cloud,” said Jesse Glaesman, Cybersecurity Manager at Acme Brick. “Being part of Berkshire Hathaway brings a lot of attention, so we’re seeing more potential cyber attacks and data theft. Increasing our visibility to cloud apps is the key to being prepared to address unknown threats. It’s imperative to be proactive.”
Delivering “astronomically more visibility”
Armed with his IT punch list, Acme sought the advice of a trusted partner, Cyber Watch Systems. They invited Forcepoint and other vendors to spend about 10 days in a workshop to compare each product. Glaesman wanted a cloud security solution that was powerful but also easy to manage and scale for the infosec team. By the end of the two weeks, Acme selected Forcepoint Cloud Access Security Broker (CASB) for its ease of use and strong capabilities.
“The Forcepoint CASB was a whole lot more intuitive and made a lot more sense,” said Glaesman. “It ran almost perfectly from day one. Plus, the CASB had features that were missing in others. The team was very knowledgeable and easy to work with, and I just had a high comfort level with Forcepoint.”
Glaesman and his team immediately saw results when the Forcepoint solution automatically discovered cloud applications, analyzed the risk, and provided real-time activity monitoring to identify potential trouble spots.
“We got astronomically more visibility with CASB compared to what we got out of analyzing Box and O365 logs,” he recalled. “Forcepoint opened our eyes. We’ve never had that line of sight and understanding before.”
Protecting data and compliance form the bedrock of security
As a supplier to builders, contractors and consumers, Acme is constantly handling confidential customer information and financial transactions.
As soon as Acme activated Forcepoint CASB, the cloud security service reported where data was being shared on both sanctioned and unsanctioned cloud apps, which the team never had before. The insights will allow Glaesman’s team to provide coaching to senior management and employees about appropriate and inappropriate usage of corporate resources. Acme’s security team can also set policies for automatic application governance based on industry best practices and regulatory requirements to close security and compliance gaps.
Eliminating security blind spots will help Acme stay in compliance with strict financial regulations like the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS). The supply company must demonstrate it processes, stores, or transmits credit card information in a secure environment. With the view on the business that Forcepoint CASB provides, Acme can meet audit demands and provide reporting that shows where the financial data is and is not stored.
“Security has always provided a layer of protection for our company,” said Glaesman. “But when it comes down to actually proving that we’re doing what we’re saying, and showing where our content and assets are, that is always a bigger challenge. I need the visibility that Forcepoint provides to actually check that box and to say with confidence, ‘I know what's not out there.’”
Partnering with Forcepoint to simplify security
Besides the ability to see around corners, the security team’s partners have helped the organization continue to push forward and be proactive with a sense of urgency. “Communication is key in our partnership,” said Glaesman. “The Cyber Watch and Forcepoint team members are a joy to work with. They help us explore all options and keep on top of everything, so we can do our jobs. And that’s making security easier to manage for our team.”
The vision to integrate solutions into a “single pane of glass” to deliver security anywhere within the enterprise hybrid environment is shared by Acme and Forcepoint. For instance, Acme is evaluating options to join CASB with DLP capabilities to enhance user and data security.
“Instead of having to buy so many things from so many different vendors and none of them work together, our team would love to find something that can do pretty much everything,” concluded Glaesman. “In security, there’s really no such thing as a true single pane of glass, but Forcepoint’s umbrella of products and features comes really close. Which makes my boss and me actually a lot happier with Forcepoint than with other solutions.”
Since its founding in 1891, Fort Worth, Texas-based Acme Brick has supplied bricks, masonry, iron, and other building materials to American homeowners, builders, contractors, institutions, and businesses.