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Aurora rapidly delivers a successful encryption upgrade

Challenge:
• Wanted to upgrade encryption software
• Needed to correct a serious compatibility issue

Solution:
• Contacted Aurora

Results:
• All necessary upgrades and deployments completed in less than one week
• Expanded functionality that also eliminates compatibility issues

“I have nothing but good things to say about Aurora.”
–Roger Davies, Alvarez & Marsal Holdings, LLC

Founded in 1983, Alvarez & Marsal (A&M) is a global professional services firm specializing in turnaround and interim management, performance improvement and tax and business advisory services. Based in New York, A&M delivers specialist consulting, operational and industry expertise to management and investors seeking to overcome challenges, accelerate performance, and maximize value across the corporate and investment life cycles.

The company installed PGP Whole Disk Encryption more than four years ago to protect data on desktops, laptops and removable media. Roger Davies, A&M’s Director of Corporate Infrastructure, knew it was time for an upgrade.

“Originally it was one of those ‘we can do it ourselves without a lot of foresight and planning’ type of installations,’ and admittedly it has not been a stable platform for us,” Davies said.

The company reinstalled the application and migrated its data, but a complication arose when Microsoft released a patch that modified the Windows XP Kernel. “I have a lot of machines out there with Windows XP, and a significant portion of them that had the update installed ended up with blue screens. Not a good thing,” Davies said. The situation was further complicated by the fact that 90% of A&M employees work in the field, so the affected computers were rarely in the office.

A phone call to PGP owner Symantec led Davies to Aurora. “Symantec told us a new client had to be pushed onto laptops to get around the blue screen, and we also had to upgrade our server. I didn’t feel we had enough in-house expertise to do it, and this was a situation where we couldn’t afford to make a mistake,” Davies explained. “Symantec pointed us to Aurora as their professional service vendor of choice.”

“We discussed the challenges they were facing because they were running an older version of the PGP product, and after doing some internal testing, confirmed that an upgrade would mitigate all the issues,” said Ralph Figueiredo, Director of Sales and Business Development at Aurora. “They wanted an upgrade from our deployment services team and they needed it done pretty quickly and asked if we could do it remotely, and we said yes to both.”

The remote deployment was more convenient for both Aurora and A&M, particularly since one company was located in New York and the other in California. The work could be completed faster, without the legal and insurance red tape created by onsite deployment, and without A&M incurring additional travel costs and expenses.

Training of A&M’s IT and security teams was also handled remotely. “We make sure they are a part of the entire deployment process,” Figueiredo said. “They could watch what we’re doing as we built the servers and tested laptops, and we trained them throughout the process.”

All necessary tasks were completed in less than one week. In addition to correcting the company’s laptop compatibility issues, the upgrades also resulted in increased functionality.

“Speed was certainly an issue and they were able to respond, “Davies said. “ I have nothing but good things to say about Aurora. They were very responsive and communicative, and they were careful to make sure that nothing was going to go wrong.”


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