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How Agile Is Your Managed SD-WAN Solution?

Many organizations have dramatically increased the number of teleworkers. Financial services companies employ large numbers of call center agents to deliver high-quality, consistent service to clients. These jobs are ideally suited for teleworking as their responsibilities are not limited to solving customer issues over the phone, but may also include interacting with customers over email, live chat, or social media.

May 26, 2020 3 minute read

The business drivers for enabling all or part of a workforce, day-extenders, part-time teleworkers and full-time teleworkers are not new. Increased throughput and reliability of broadband connections have addressed the voice and video quality of service (QoS) challenges of the early Enterprise Class Teleworker implementations. 

We now have cloud-managed networking from Cisco Meraki, which dramatically simplifies the provisioning and management of teleworker gateway routers through a robust Application Programming Interface (API). These APIs are the hallmark of SD-WAN, an implementation of software-defined networking (SDN).

The WWT and Cisco Meraki partnership

World Wide Technology is the worldwide leader in Meraki certifications, design and deployments. WWT is also a trusted managed service provider for Cisco Meraki deployments. Companies outsource the management of their Cisco Meraki deployments to WWT, allowing them to focus on their core business rather than maintaining full-time staff in-house. 

SOAR: Integrating disparate systems

Security Orchestration, Automation and Response (SOAR) platforms provide a framework to automate the routine aspects of a security operations center. Splunk Phantom is a SOAR platform incorporating a WWT developed Meraki integration.

Breadth of experience

We recently met with an investment management financial services company that increased their remote workers from 400 to 2,700 agents supported primarily by the Cisco Meraki Z3 Cloud Managed Teleworker Gateway. The firm's Meraki network is a WWT managed service offering. 

Risk management and regulatory compliance issue require stringent access controls of the devices (only corporate IP Phones and laptops) connected to the gateway. The firm's security analysts, at times, need to react to unauthorized devices attached to the teleworker gateway. 

Because of the breadth of experience of WWT, along with working in a collaborative approach with the customer and the Meraki managed services team, we were able to develop additional functionality to the Meraki app developed in 2016 for Phantom Cyber within days of the initial request.

Outcome realized

The initial development effort of the Meraki app for Phantom Cyber provided a data enrichment capability, determining the location of an end-user device within the Meraki cloud. The customer needed the ability to programmatically quarantine a teleworker gateway if an unauthorized device was detected. The Meraki app for Phantom Cyber was enhanced to include a 'bind network' function, allowing the security operations team to specify the target network and the name of the quarantine template.

Cisco Meraki app for Phantom Cyber

Key takeaways

The team's knowledge and experience at WWT extend further than merely providing a managed SD-WAN solution to provision remote workers.

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