Humanitarian Initiative Just Relief , Kenya, East Africa
HIJRA Selects Cyberoam for Secure and Reliable VPN Connectivity
Humanitarian Initiative Just Relief, Non Government Organization

Humanitarian Initiative Just Relief Aid (HIJRA) is a humanitarian organization that aims to positively contribute towards improving the living standards and conditions of those adversely affected by disasters and conflict in the greater Horn of Africa.

Their initial program components were set-up and designed to include free food distribution, food-for-work, and the distribution of Non-Food-Items. Today they work to implement emergency interventions through short-term resilience focused projects such as community-based education, water, sanitation, livelihoods and healthcare services.

HIJRA with the help of their international partners, has successfully implemented dozens of lifesaving projects. Projects implemented over the years include the construction of water storage and sanitation facilities, pit latrines, cash relief, distribution of NFI's and the management/renovation of Healthcare facilities

We were in need for a solution that would help remote employees to access all types of network resources and information, in a secure way

Mr. Jimmy Barasa
IT/Project Officer

Being a leading and dynamic humanitarian organization, the Internet is used both for Email communication and Web surfing. In addition, HIJRA’s offices are spread across the greater Horn of Africa. In a time when the business requirements demand global presence for HIJRA, the need for mobile and interconnect solution is now more than ever.

“We were in need for a solution that would help remote employees to access all types of network resources and information, in a secure way”, said Mr. Jimmy Barasa, IT/Project Officer at HIJRA.

According to Mr. Barasa, the issues that they faced were:

Issues with Remote Access Management and User Accountability

Mr. Barasa said, “We were looking for a solution that could provide us with secure remote access feature to connect our Branch Offices with the Head Office”. However, the need was not of a solution that would just provide them with VPN connectivity but a reliable, secure and threat-free connectivity through VPN. In addition, the solution should provide efficient user authentication and accountability.

Lack of Web Content Filtering

One of the most worrisome aspects of having Internet in your organization is that the Internet offers a multitude of opportunities to divert employees’ mind from productive work to undesired activities like gaming, shopping, social networking, MP3 downloads and uploads. In addition, not to forget the threat caused by malicious websites and applications introduced inadvertently while surfing leisure websites.

Bandwidth Misuse

Bandwidth is a very expensive resource for organizations of all scales. Uncontrolled and unmonitored surfing and downloading often eats upon the precious and often limited, network bandwidth. In addition, several applications are particularly bandwidth hungry, leaving others with insufficient capacity. It is quite clear that lack of proper bandwidth management may lead to a negative effect of the network performance.

“We were looking for a solution that could help us assign appropriate network bandwidth to individual users and applications“, said Mr. Barasa.

The Cyberoam Solution

HIJRA was in search of a solution that could provide them with best in class network security at lower expenses. After careful evaluation of all the selected products including Cisco 2900 ISR and GFI Web Monitor, they found Cyberoam to be a clear winner with its best in class VPN, User Accounting, Web Filtering and Bandwidth Management features. They purchased Two (2) CR 100ia and One (1) CR 50ia appliances and deployed all the appliances in Gateway mode.

After deploying Cyberoam in the network, the benefits that they notice are:

  • A VPN Feature to Overcome all Remote Access Issues

    Cyberoam delivers Any Where, Any Time, Any Device access with a range of VPN options, ensuring uninterrupted business operations, enhanced productivity and lower cost of operations by minimizing travel and infrastructure expenses. Cyberoam offers the option of IPSec VPN, L2TP, PPTP and SSL VPN over its Next-generation Firewall appliances. Cyberoam IPSec VPN delivers secure, encrypted tunnels with high performance and low bandwidth requirements.

    Mr. Barasa has established a secure Site-to-Site VPN connection between the Head Office in Kenya and the Branch Offices. Cyberoam’s Authentication, Authorization and Accounting (AAA) feature allows him to authenticate users in the Branch Offices from a single location i.e. Head Office, using AD replication. Mr. Barasa happily said, “Cyberoam’s VPN solution backed by its AAA feature is superb. Now user authorization and accounting issues with remote access are long gone.”

  • Efficient Web and Application Filtering

    After successfully integrating Cyberoam with an AD server, Mr. Barasa has created Identity-based filtering policies to regulate the content accessed over the Internet.

    Cyberoam’s web filter enables him to block specific websites for specific users, without interfering with employees’ access to appropriate sites and their day-to-day work.

    Cyberoam’s content filtering database has more than 100 million sites neatly grouped into more than 89 categories. The comprehensive content filtering database helps him avoid potential legal problems and significant threats to the organization.

  • Network Bandwidth Managed

    Mr. Barasa says, “Cyberoam’s bandwidth management offering is great. The ability to assign user and application based bandwidth is really useful for us”.

    Cyberoam’s Bandwidth Management offers Layer 8 Identity-based bandwidth control, preventing congestion, bandwidth abuse and optimizing bandwidth and delivering higher ROI. In addition, Cyberoam’s QoS feature allows Mr. Barasa to restrict bandwidth usage by implementing bandwidth policies based on User, Firewall Policy, Web Category and Application.

    Finally yet importantly, the intelligent bandwidth management can contribute to preventing Denial of Service (DoS) and other malicious attacks.

  • To Conclude

    “Thanks to Cyberoam, VPN connectivity is now just a few clicks away. Now the employees can move from one office to the other without any hassle”, said Mr. Barasa.