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Utilizing Enterprise Threat Protector, WealthNavi was able to secure its off-network laptops and reduce its team’s workload

“Enterprise Threat Protector is fundamentally stronger against threats as it stops them at multiple stages of the cyber kill chain.”

Shingo Kitamura, Security Engineer, WealthNavi

FinTech: An Industry with No Tolerance for Data Leaks

WealthNavi is a Japanese asset management company with more than 320,000 customers and over 280 billion yen under management as of August 2020. Ensuring that the company, its assets, and its customers’ personal information are secure and protected is a key priority for the company and its security team.

Furthermore, in 2015, Japan’s Financial Services Agency formulated and published “Policy Approaches to Strengthen Cyber Security in the Financial Sector,” which called for improved cybersecurity for banks, securities companies, and the FinTech industry as a whole. As a result of this mandate, which was updated in 2019, WealthNavi’s security team constantly evaluates its security solutions to determine if they provide the appropriate level of protection.

The company deployed multiple layers of protection such as next-generation firewalls and endpoint protection in the form of an endpoint protection platform (EPP) and endpoint detection and response (EDR), but continued to look for ways to further enhance security.

“We’re a company that handles people’s valuable assets and sensitive personal information, so information leaks are not permitted. When it comes to security, the word ‘excessive’ doesn’t exist for us,” says Shingo Kitamura, an internal security engineer at WealthNavi. “The most critical area of our constant security evaluation is malware prevention solutions. We felt it was vital that we took a more sophisticated and long-term approach in our measures for combating constantly evolving malware.”

Full Visibility of Web Traffic Provides Reassurance

The WealthNavi security team identified Akamai’s enterprise security solutions during their search for anti-malware security improvements. The team was particularly interested in Enterprise Threat Protector as a proactive malware prevention solution because it would be easy to introduce alongside its existing security solutions. The team opted to undertake a proof of concept (POC) to gain an understanding of the solution’s potential impact.

“Performing an Enterprise Threat Protector POC enabled us to have full visibility of all web traffic and quickly get the reassurance that transactions to malware and phishing websites were restricted,” states Kitamura. “We also realized that very few security team resources were required to manage Enterprise Threat Protector. There was no need to change any settings on endpoints and it was deployed by simply changing our DNS server configuration. We were initially concerned that this might impact the performance of devices that our engineers and creative staff use, but we had no complaints,” Kitamura continues.

WealthNavi deployed Enterprise Threat Protector one month after the POC, having confirmed that the improved security it provided was well worth the cost of the service.

Enterprise Threat Protector Greatly Reduces Security Team Workload

“Unlike a web proxy server, which is expensive and complex to deploy, Enterprise Threat Protector is reasonably priced and easy to deploy. What’s more, Enterprise Threat Protector is fundamentally stronger against threats as it stops them at multiple stages of the cyber kill chain,” says Kitamura.

While WealthNavi still uses its EPP and EDR solutions to block unauthorized inbound data, Enterprise Threat Protector has added an additional security layer, enabling the asset management firm to prevent access to unauthorized websites entirely.

“As Enterprise Threat Protector doesn’t duplicate the approaches of our other security products, the number of endpoint alerts have decreased by 50%. As a result, our security team’s workload has also significantly decreased,” Kitamura further explains.

Off-Network Laptops Are More Secure

WealthNavi primarily uses laptops — and while many are used on company premises, employees do take them offsite for important work and meetings. WealthNavi had security measures in place on these company-managed laptops, but they believed that a more advanced, comprehensive solution was needed to explicitly protect laptops that would be used remotely. This off-network security was another key reason that WealthNavi deployed Enterprise Threat Protector.

“One of the main benefits is the ability to install the Enterprise Threat Protector client on laptops that are taken outside the office, to allow these devices to continue to be protected. This gives us the peace of mind that our users are protected from malware and phishing attacks regardless of location,” concludes Kitamura.

About WealthNavi

WealthNavi, Inc. is an automated investment advisory firm that provides a FinTech service, delivering world-class automated asset management. The company offers a platform for asset managers that uses risk management algorithms for asset management advice. The company’s wealth advisory platform is a mobile and web-based application that helps customers to manage diversified investment portfolios, providing users with asset management and risk management services in a simple, easy-to-understand, and low-cost manner. The company was founded in 2015 and is headquartered in Tokyo, Japan.

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