iSite, LLC offers a cloud-hosted, web-based, lifecycle contract management system (CMS) solution for Government contractors, and Federal agencies. The iSite contract and CMS solution has been deployed on mission-critical NASA and U.S. Air Force contracts since 2005, and provides an integrated, efficient work process with automated task order management capabilities. The iSite solution has been hosted on Amazon Web ServicesSM (AWS) since 2013.
As a growing company dealing with Government contracts, iSite is constantly challenged to do more with less while maintaining compliance with Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) security regulations. “We’ve seen attacks from many different sources and even had to implement a system-wide black list of entire countries due to the frequency of reconnaissance scans against our public servers,” said Josh Waclawski, iSite’s Infrastructure Engineer.
When the company moved to AWS, they needed a security solution that integrated directly with AWS and did not require large upfront costs for new servers and licenses. “FedRAMP regulations require continuous security monitoring, which adds an extra level of complexity. With a small IT staff, it’s important that our security solution is easy to operate and maintain,” said Justin Anderson, iSite’s Chief Information Security Officer.
Infrastructure Engineer, iSite
When iSite began the search for a security solution for their AWS environment, Trend Micro immediately stood out from other vendors. Trend Micro has an excellent reputation, and offered the configurability, reporting, and notifications that could streamline security operations. “With FedRAMP, you need a trusted security partner with a proven track record. No other providers had the reputation of Trend Micro, or a solution that worked with AWS like Trend Micro Deep Security as a Service,” said Anderson.
Since selecting Trend Micro™ Deep Security™ as a Service to protect their IT environment more than two years ago, the solution continues to deliver the security and capabilities iSite needs to ensure FedRAMP compliance. “The solution worked right from the start. It plugs right into AWS, scans and finds all of our instances, and tells us what‘s missing—we just point it and let it do its job,” said Anderson.
iSite uses every facet of Deep Security™ as a Service, including integrity monitoring, login inspection, intrusion detection and prevention, anti-malware, web reputation and the bidirectional firewall. The solution provides policy-driven management and administration, and customizable policy templates that enable users to disable security controls on the fly based on rules they assign. “We have a single iSite platform on AWS for staging, production, and DevOps. Deep Security as a Service allows us to use the same configurations for each environment, and scale notifications up or down using policies,” said Anderson.
Trend Micro also helps iSite keep up with FedRAMP updates. For example, FedRAMP requires that organizations sign up for update feeds, and iSite uses Trend Micro RSS feeds to ensure its environment is up-to-date and secure.
In addition to alerts that notify iSite’s security team of events or activities that may require immediate attention, Deep Security as a Service offers recommendation scan capabilities. “We use Deep Security’s recommendation scans to identify any current threats and tell us what patches or upgrades we need to apply, so we’re assured the system is always protected,” said Waclawski.
Trend Micro™ Deep Security™ as a Service has delivered several important benefits for iSite. The solution’s detailed reports are critical during FedRAMP audits, and play an important role in maintaining compliance. The solution helped check off the boxes for 25 FedRAMP controls across nine control families. “The auditors were blown away by the information they could pull from Deep Security as a Service when certifying FedRAMP controls,” said Anderson.
After recently completing a FedRAMP audit conducted by a Third Party Assessment Organization (3PAO), iSite received a remarkable 94.9% pass rate.
Deep Security™ as a Service also enables iSite to keep costs down by eliminating the need for several employees to actively monitor the system for threats. “The customizable dashboards and alerting capabilities have saved us countless hours of employee monitoring. I would gladly recommend the solution—especially to companies that are cost-aware,” said Anderson.
The solution’s log inspection capabilities provided unexpected benefits for iSite. Deep Security as a Service provides built-in support for iSite’s Linux and Windows systems, so it can send information directly to the log inspection server. “With FedRAMP, it’s a huge benefit to be able to prove you have redundancy in logs—and with Trend Micro as an external source, it’s easy to fulfill this requirement,” said Waclawski.
“Deep Security as a Service provides 90% of everything we need to ensure security and comply with FedRAMP on AWS—and the solution has the capability to forward information that covers the last 10%,” said Anderson.
Looking ahead, iSite plans to expand its services beyond NASA and Air Force contracts and would like to move to Amazon GovCloud, which adheres to U.S. International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) requirements. “With AWS and Deep Security as a Service, we have the capability to spin up the same solution in the GovCloud and by adding a few controls we could easily pass a FedRAMP high audit,” said Anderson.