Rebuilding Stronger than Ever: The City of New Orleans Protects its Assets with FireEye

The mark that Hurricane Katrina left when it slammed down on the City of New Orleans in 2005 was so severe that the community is still feeling the effects today, nearly 13 years later. However, despite the destruction, the locals were not deterred. Instead, they vowed to rebuild bigger and better than before – everything from the streets to the buildings to the technological infrastructure.

After about a decade of regrowth, something unexpected happened: the City experienced a serious malware attack. The security teams at the time worked hard to mitigate the threat, but it was unclear if anything malicious had been left behind that existing legacy tools couldn’t detect. The City just didn’t feel confident that it had the necessary capabilities to monitor and control everything that was occurring across its environment, and that’s where FireEye came in.

“We were excited to implement the capabilities offered by the FireEye suite of solutions,” Freud Alexandre, New Orleans enterprise architect and security manager, said. “Deploying FireEye Network Security was an extremely easy process and it quickly became evident that it would be a great fit in our environment.”

While the City was immensely appreciative of the many post-Katrina donations of personal computers, devices and other endpoints from people all across the country, FireEye Network Security had identified an alarming number of callbacks occurring from malicious code at endpoints throughout the City’s environment. Alexandre noted, “With NX we were seeing over a 1,000 callback attempts being blocked each day!”

Since email is the most used application across the entire City of New Orleans staff, and with FireEye Network Security proving to be a huge success, the City decided it was important to install FireEye Email Security. And just as with network events, Alexandre said that with FireEye Email Security in blocking mode, the City saw phishing and other malicious email activity drop off tremendously.

Finally, New Orleans implemented FireEye Central Management Series to consolidate the management of the FireEye solutions. “[FireEye Central Management Series] combines the information from both FireEye Email Security and FireEye Network Security into one single ‘pane of glass’ for us,” explained Alexandre. “The administration is intuitive and really straightforward; it’s so easy to use that I don’t even feel the need to offer new team members any supplemental training.”

Alexandre added that the simple integration of FireEye solutions into existing infrastructure came with no noticeable impact to performance. “There’s no perceivable performance degradation for users and it easily handles new applications or hardware changes in the environment,” he said. “We’re extremely satisfied.”

Read the full City of New Orleans customer story, and learn all about how our other clients benefit from FireEye solutions.