FlyFirefly Sdn Bhd, Malaysia, Asia
Cyberoam Helps Firefly Airline Achieve High Network Security to Meet Challenging Aviation Standards
About FlyFirefly Sdn Bhd, Airline

Launched on April 3rd 2007, Firefly, a community airline, is operated under FlyFirefly Sdn Bhd, and is a wholly owned subsidiary of Malaysian Airline System Berhad. Operating out of our hubs in Penang and Subang, Firefly provides new and exclusive routes to various points within the Peninsular Malaysia, Southern Thailand and Sumatera of Indonesia, aligning itself with the Indonesia-Malaysia-Thailand Growth Triangle (IMTGT) agenda. Subang being the renewed congregation place of business and leisure alike, it is the perfect touch point for new and seasoned travelers alike.

The name Firefly (in Mandarin fei1 ying2) was chosen to depict the airline‘s characteristics, which are agility, brilliance, charm, and fun. Being unique and evocative, Firefly is easily recognizable and has the potential to grow and command a brand premium in the future.

The airline aims is to bring communities closer by overcoming geographical constraints, link the world to the communities they serve, and contribute to the economy of the communities by bringing trade and tourism.

“Internet is one of the most business critical resources for Firefly. No Internet, no Airline Reservation. The Ground operations will also have to be handled manually. Hence Internet security is of prime concern.”

Mr. Ang Kean Leong
Manager Enterprise

The Manager, Enterprise Architecture at Firefly, Mr. Ang Kean Leong outlined the basic requirements saying, “Internet is one of the most business critical resources for our organization.”

Business Need of Internet

The Internet is primarily used to access the company‘s core applications like:

  • Airline Reservation and Ticketing
  • Ground Operations

Apart from this Internet is used in back office administration and by pilots. Not only is Internet needed for internal communications, but the crew members also access Internet to file their flight plans and keep abreast with latest weather changes.

“We have to make sure that there is no intentional or inadvertent misuse of internet and that our network is clean and well protected.” Mr. Ang said.

Business Continuity Concerns

One major issue was the connectivity problem. "If Internet was down, we have to stop selling tickets. We also have to resort to manual ground operations (e.g. manual check-ins)," Mr. Ang said grimly. To avoid a single point of failure, multiple locations had multiple ISP links. So, multiple ISP links load balancing, bandwidth management and failover is also a critical need. The VPN Clients used to connect to the parent network were extremely unreliable.

Spam and Malware Threat

Spam was another huge problem. Almost 70% of the total mail traffic was spam. Most of the time, the employees‘ inboxes were clogged with unwanted and unsolicited mails. These mails not only cost the organization in terms of storage space, but also wasted employees‘ valuable time and efforts. In case of malware infected mails, the problems simply compounded and the network suffered and so did the productivity.

Indiscriminate surfing led to productivity loss and provided a potent vector for the malware to enter the company‘s networks. So while the surfing needed to be curbed, the Internet traffic also needed to be sanitized.

In a nutshell, frequent downtime, virus and adware, and bandwidth abuse were the chief concerns. While maintaining high standards of Internet security, connectivity and productivity in the organization, Mr. Ang wanted a single box solution that operated on the motto - Quick Configure, Fire and Forget.

The Cyberoam Solution

Multiple solutions meant that there might be multiple boxes sitting in the network. The total Capital cost and then the Operational costs would be high. Maintenance of these boxes would require special skills and personnel to man it. Firefly is an airline company, not an IT company.

Mr. Ang decided to go for a UTM solution. After careful evaluation and deliberation of multiple products, he chose Cyberoam as he found it to be a robust solution, an ideal mix of best-of-thebreed solutions and backed by strong proactive technical assistance. Firefly deployed four (4) Cyberoam appliances all in gateway mode.

The deployment details are:

Appliance Details Location
CR50i , Two (2), Active-Active load
balancing High Availability
CR50i, One (1) Standalone Sultan Abdul Aziz Shah Airport, Subang
CR25i, One (1) Standalone Firefly‘s Administrative Office, Subang

    Cyberoam‘s Check Mark Certified firewall provides secure access control over all network resources. This ensures that there are no more trespassers.

  • Solving the Spam and Malware Concern

    Cyberoam‘s Check Mark Certified anti-virus solution scans the Web surfing (HTTP, HTTPS, FTP) and mail traffic (SMTP, IMAP, POP3) to ensure that no malware sneaks in. All FTP transactions are also scanned for total security.

    Check Mark certified anti-spam solution ensures that not a single mail made it to the internal inboxes. The spam is neutralized at the gateway. Continuous spam protection was installed and had instantaneous effect.

    Following the Cyberoam appliance dictum of Quick-Configure-and-Fire, the intelligent anti-spam solution required almost no human intervention to put it on war footing. Signature-less Virus Outbreak Detection technology protects the organization against any mail-based Zero-Day attack, hours before traditional signature-dependent solutions.

  • Web Content Filtering

    Cyberoam‘s 82+ category strong Web Content filtering technology kept the organization‘s internet resources productively focused. The IPS and Content filtering features ensure that all P2P and Instant Messengers are blocked and that there is no breach of data.

  • Business Continuity Restored

    Cyberoam supports more than two WAN links. Here in Firefly, multiple ISP links were load balanced ensuring business continuity as per Mr. Ang‘s requirements.

    He is also able to maintain Quality of Service (QOS) by using the Bandwidth Management feature of Cyberoam. The link failover feature ensures that in case of a link failure, another one takes over automatically to ensure total business connectivity.

    SSL VPN turned out to be an unforeseen benefit. The organization has now moved away from Cisco VPN Client and adopted Cyberoam‘s SSL VPN to ensure end-to-end business connectivity. The level of reliability is simply awesome.

  • Proactive Technical Help
    Proactive technical support of Cyberoam is one of its major highlights. Prompt response, quick action and transparent transfer of knowledge to let customers find their own bearing so that they can trouble shoot problems themselves and gain confidence in the solution, are the hallmark of Cyberoam‘s high standards.

  • To Conclude

    “Cyberoam is instrumental to my effort to upgrade Firefly communication infrastructure to be more secure and robust. It has radically transformed our infrastructure in such a way that makes downtime a rare event. Virus and spam attack has reduced to zero. It is an ideal fit, One Box solution for our total connectivity, productivity and security needs.” Mr. Ang Kean Leong concluded.