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Courion Helps West Midlands Police Patrol Access Rights

Background: West Midlands Police is the second largest police force in the United Kingdom, covering an area of 348 square miles and serving a population of almost 2.6 million. The region is at the very heart of Great Britain, and includes three major population centres. On average, 170,000 motorists drive through the region each day, making the West Midlands’ motorways some of the busiest in Europe. As a result of these factors, West Midlands Police deals with more than 2,000 emergency calls a day.

Challenges: West Midlands Police has 15,000 officers and support staff. The organization has spent the past five years on its Gateway Project; a mechanism to give each employee access to the right buildings, systems and information at the right time, as well as to provide secure access to the national UK Police Force database. The Gateway Project was established in December 2005 to respond to the ACPO/ACPOS Information Systems Community Security Policy, a requirement for all Police Forces in England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales to provide corporate access systems and manage role-based access to applications, buildings, and information. Previously, the Force’s IT department had to go through a laborious manual process taking up to two weeks to grant users access to new areas. On top of this, access changes for movers, joiners and leavers added further complication. The importance of accessing information and systems in a timely manner during emergencies cannot be understated, and the deployment of a comprehensive IAM solution was needed to reduce the time to grant access from days to minutes.

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Solution provided by Courion Corporation: The final part of the Gateway Project was the delivery of an integrated Identity & Access Management (IAM) infrastructure to provide role-based access to West Midlands Police Force assets. The ability to share information rapidly across all police forces is increasingly vital. But this access comes with a responsibility to ensure that the right people have the appropriate access to information, and also that such access can be tracked. It’s also important to identify that users requesting access to such information are who they say they are.Courion’s Access Assurance Suite™ solution was selected from a list of 19 offered solutions, which was in turn reduced to a short list of five candidates during a year-long selection process. Courion’s Access Assurance Suite is a comprehensive identity and access management suite that allows organizations to automate user access verification and remediation. Courion’s access certification and compliance management solutions extend the responsibility and accountability for access compliance to the most appropriate resources, enabling business users to monitor and enforce user access to sensitive data and other vital corporate assets. Courion’s solution was chosen for its ability to deploy quickly, reduce complexity - both as a single, vendor-agnostic solution and as a comprehensive suite of tools - reduce cost savings and ensure compliance with national standards for policing.West Midlands Police is making use of RoleCourier, part of the Courion Access Assurance Suite, to automate the creation and ongoing management of roles. In essence, the role performed by members of the Force determines the level of access that person receives to Force assets. The Courion system grants and revokes access privileges automatically based on the user’s rank, limiting the chances of unauthorized personnel being granted more than least privilege access. In addition, a robust audit trail is created by the system.

Summary: While there are significant cost and time savings for the IT staff at West Midlands Police, the key benefit for the Force is the overall improvement in efficiency and compliance with security guidelines issued by the Association of Chief Police Officers. The Gateway Project is intended to provide business benefits, speeding access to information and systems, the accurate management of who gets access to what, and automated provisioning for new hires, those changing roles or leaving the organization.West Midlands Police Force’s deployment of the Courion Access Assurance Suite allows the Force to ensure that access to key systems is shared quickly, but also securely, and provides peace of mind in knowing that IT is granting the right users the right access to the right resources and that they are doing the right things.

Courion Corporation
1900 West Park Drive, 1st Floor
Westborough, MA 01581-3919 U.S.A.

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