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Jenny Craig Centralizes Security Management

Diet-center operator uses Fortinet appliances to simplify and automate operations
Jenny Craig Inc., which operates 515 diet centers nationwide, last summer decided to simplify security. It's one-fifth done.

Before the overhaul, the $280 million-a-year company used VPN software loaded on each PC that dialed in to the corporate office. Its retail centers used different safeguards. That kind of remote management was hard to maintain and caused security problems, IT director Jeff Nelson says. To make matters worse, Jenny Craig had been routing its stores' Web traffic through a home-office server to filter Web content, slowing traffic.

In all, it was a "high-maintenance operation," Nelson says. A new data warehouse and a Web-based client-profiling app precipitated a change. Before the company could go live with apps full of sensitive customer data, it needed to put data-protection safeguards in place.

The company turned to network security-gear-maker Fortinet Inc. to centralize security. It installed FortiGate-60 appliances at 110 centers, and plans to finish the job this year. The appliances protect against spyware and Web-borne viruses, and include firewall, content filtering, VPN, and other capabilities. With the Fortinet deployment under way, antivirus and security-rule updates are automatic.

If a security breach occurs, IT staff can spot it right away. "Before, we didn't see these things," Nelson says. "Now, we can look in one place and see what's happening in each of the centers."