San Martino Hospital

A circuit board is lit up blue






San Martino Hospital is a center of excellence for the research, treatment, and prevention of oncological diseases. Located in Genoa, Italy, it hosts 1,500 beds and employs 5,000 people. The hospital is made up of 60 buildings, including university research facilities and clinics, occupying over 340 square kilometers in the heart of the city. The hospital’s mission is to pursue excellence in health services, in- patient services, specialized care, and innovation in biomedical and healthcare research.


The healthcare industry presents unique security challenges on a daily basis. Granting healthcare professionals quick and unfiltered access to medical records is crucial to any emergency situation. However, the security of a patient’s personal health information (PHI) and personally identifiable information (PII) cannot be sacrificed and must always be a top priority for any healthcare organization.

While the web gives many hospitals access to electronic health records (EHR), it creates a vulnerable avenue for data breaches. In fact, the Ponemon Institute reports that 91% of healthcare organizations reported at least one data breach in the past two years, and more than 60% of hospitals have no breach response plan in place1.

“When I first arrived, the security solution in place was in a critical, vulnerable state. In many respects, it was largely unsuited to meet the needs of this hospital.”
— Dario Padrone, Director of Information Systems and Engineering, San Martino Hospital

San Martino’s challenges were further complicated by its merger, in 2011, with one of the largest universities in Italy—the University and Scientific Institute of Genoa. The merger put pressure on a network that was already struggling with high traffic volumes. After identifying key points of vulnerability in its security infrastructure, the hospital developed a strategic plan for investing in a security solution focused on achieving the best care for its patients.


When evaluating which security solution to ultimately purchase, San Martino placed a great deal of importance on analysis and the depth of reporting that each solution offered.

“We performed a comparative evaluation of several of the highest-rated security solutions on the market. For us, it was imperative to purchase a solution able to guard against the latest in advanced web threats while having actionable reporting capabilities.”
— Padrone

After a successful PoC with Forcepoint, San Martino purchased Forcepoint Web Security because of its proven capabilities in identifying zero-day malware and other malicious activity. A fully-integrated, unified solution simplified deployment during a stressful merger and streamlined strict hospital and university compliancy issues.

Forcepoint Web Security, in addition, allows San Martino to utilize behavioral sandboxing for advanced threat identification in real time. With real-time code analysis via behavioral sandboxing and advanced classification, healthcare professionals can seamlessly access the EHR of any patient without worrying about potential data loss.


According to Padrone, Forcepoint has solved a number of security challenges since implementation. However, hospital staff has also noticed additional, unexpected benefits that are unusual in the security industry. After deployment, Padrone and his team noticed a visible increase in the speed of a number of network services and enterprise applications. Ultimately, with the help of Forcepoint, San Martino has drastically improved the flow of network traffic, allowing healthcare professionals to successfully and safely perform their duties.

“Forcepoint Web Security has improved how we access a patient’s information in terms of security and speed—optimizing response times for our emergency personnel.”

San Martino trusts Forcepoint Web Security to secure patient records, x-ray and MRI images, and university research information which can now be quickly and seamlessly accessed by its healthcare professionals— providing exceptional care and innovation without sacrificing security.

San Martino has relied on Forcepoint solutions since 2012.


1 “Data Theft Prevention for Healthcare”, Forcepoint Whitepaper, October, 2015

San Martino Hospital

San Martino Hospital is a center of excellence for the research, treatment, and prevention of oncological diseases. Located in Genoa, Italy, it hosts 1,500 beds and employs 5,000 people.