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Hillsborough Community College

Large College Expands Network Access While Thwarting Security Threats

“Previously, intrusions were a daily occurrence. Now, we have been able to reduce them by 90%. And in the rare case we need to handle an intrusion, we have taken advantage of the automation in FortiGate to make the process work much better.”

– Kenneth Compres, Information Security Officer, Hillsborough Community College


As a result of a campus-wide “bring-your-own-device” (BYOD) policy, Hillsborough Community College (HCC) experienced a massive increase in network traffic and a surging demand for wireless access points—leading to a corresponding expansion in its network’s attack surface. The college also had a growing footprint in Azure, and recognized that it was responsible for protecting both its Office 365 data and applications residing in the cloud. In addition, HCC needed to rationalize its expenditures for wide area networking (WAN) connectivity, while ensuring differing quality-of-service (QoS) levels for different applications.

Replacing legacy firewalls that could not protect the endpoints or provide seamless visibility to security events, HCC opted for FortiGate next-generation firewalls (NGFWs) at its network edges, in its data center, and in the Azure cloud. It also leveraged FortiAuthenticator to keep students and staff in separate wireless domains. Meanwhile, FortiGate Secure SD-WAN is ramping up to add WAN resiliency, reduce WAN costs, and enable differential QoS management. Other components of the Fortinet Security Fabric, together with Fortinet support and services, are enabling HCC’s lean IT staff to close security gaps throughout the distributed network, while saving hundreds of thousands of dollars in the process.

Learn how HCC worked with Fortinet to design and deploy a seamless Security Fabric that addressed the college’s operational and security needs in this case study

Business Impact


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$750,000 reduction in the total cost of firewall, IDS, and IPS capabilities

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Nearly $700,000 annual FTE operational savings

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90% reduction in intrusions, improving security and reducing staff time on remediation

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Effective threat protection and easier IP address management in Azure cloud

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WAN cost savings, resiliency, and quality-of-service capabilities with SD-WAN

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Closure of security gaps between wireless endpoints and internal network

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Faster audit response with pre-built and customized reports

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Ability to give CIO clear picture of security posture

Learn More About the Solutions