About Sripatum University (SPU)
Sripatum University was established in 1970 and is one of Thailand's oldest and most prestigious private universities. The university currently has 3 campuses - the Bangkhen Main Campus in Bangkok, the Chonburi Campus, and the Kon Kaen Campus.
Offering undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral degree programs, the university strives to encourage the use of information technology in all its courses to prepare students for the IT-enabled society.
IT infrastructure is also critical for the university to assist administrators, lecturers, and staff in performing their duties efficiently and effectively.
Business Pain points
Decades ago, the Chonburi Campus would make use of open-source software as it provided quality at a reasonable price. While making use of the GNU software, the university found problems with configuration and installation.
Additionally, the university experience difficulties with blocking threats through the firewall. The firewall that was used previously was also lacking in terms of performance for user support.
Finally, the university has been making use of physical, stand-alone servers to store each application separately. This proved to be very difficult to do and manage multiple programs at the same time including web, TAD, MIH, and many other programs.
The infrastructure used was very difficult to update and maintain and the issue of downtime became disruptive. If the servers of the university broke down, it would take several hours to restore them – which affected the university’s operations.
That’s when Sripatum University first discovered Sangfor’s booth when attending the UniNet event.
Sangfor’s Solution for Sripatum University
Firstly, Sangfor’s Internet Access Gateway (IAG) was put in place to provide an Internet behavior management solution. When assessing the platform, the university found that the features, performance, and price of Sangfor’s Internet Access Gateway met all its requirements.
The platform has been in use at the university since 2011 and easily gave SPU the ability to track the time, website, IP address, and behavior of both students and personnel. In terms of traceability and reporting, the Internet Access Gateway was highly effective - showing the behavior of each user in reports that allow you to estimate an exact amount of Internet access.
The platform has improved a lot since then and still makes it easier for the university to access and reduces network traffic and bandwidth usage. It also allows the university to easily manage internet usage for media consumption.
Another benefit of the platform is its ability to do web caching – it records website histories and directly links them to the internet access management platform instead of going elsewhere.
Later on, the Chonburi campus chose to adopt Sangfor’s Next Generation Firewall (NGAF) as well. The platform enhanced the university’s internet networks. External networks were also used to increase internet bandwidth. While the university has only been using Sangfor’s Next-Generation Firewall for a few months now, they have already detected many more threats from the outside.
While traditional firewalls could only screen at layer 4, the Next-Generation Firewall is implemented at application level layer 7. This is where it can find flaws in SQ encoding and script writing – effectively preventing advanced threats.
The university has already experienced threats to its network through users or personnel downloading or clicking on unsafe links. This led to those computers getting viruses which then attempted to infiltrate the university’s internal network.
Fortunately, the Sangfor Next-Generation Firewall was in place to detect the attacks and the application and IP addresses of the infected computers were effectively blocked off from the network.
Thereafter, the university invested in Sangfor’s Endpoint Secure platform. This was ideal for SPU as it could be installed on the server and by clients. Another great feature of the platform was that it could be synched to the Next-Generation Firewall as well. Endpoint Secure protected the university from ransomware, backdoor attacks, and trojan horses.
Issues on each user’s computer would be reported to the Next-Generation Firewall and then be blocked off from the internal network immediately. Information was synched and integrated in real-time. The platform was more convenient and reduced operational costs for the university. Endpoint Secure ensured that all cyber threats were found and eliminated in real-time.
Finally, the university decided to upgrade its infrastructure using Sangfor’s Hyper-Converged Infrastructure (HCI) to unify its servers. The solution simplified storage processes and reduced time consumption concerning OS, databases, and applications.
While the previous servers took ages to restore, Sangfor’s Hyper-Converged Infrastructure is back within 5 minutes. The platform drastically improved the performance and speed of the university’s network.
In terms of management and administration, the Hyper-Converged Infrastructure provides simplified centralization and efficiency. In terms of security, the Sangfor Internet Access Gateway helps trace users in compliance with Thai cyber laws while the Next-Generation Firewall and Endpoint Secure platforms protect the network from any cyber threat.
Assistant to the President and Acting Associate Dean for the School of Information Technology at Sripatum University, Prof. Narin Panawas, has stated that Sangfor’s products and platforms have greatly improved the university’s performance and efficiency.
Sangfor ensured that the university can plan ahead and make the best use of its IT investment. For more information on Sangfor’s cyber security and cloud computing solutions, visit www.sangfor.com.