MathWorks is the leading developer of mathematical computing software for engineers and scientists employing over 3,000 people in 15 countries.

Jim Habeeb is Senior Director of IT at The MathWorks

So when IT Director Jim Habeeb pinpointed the IT organization’s absolute priorities during development of his annual business plan, data security ranked highest among the organization’s triggered projects.

The software company serves a range of industries, from automotive to aerospace, building models to analyze mounds of data and guide their customers to efficiently use existing MathWorks’ tool sets.

“Obviously, we need to make sure our software and their data is controlled,” Habeeb said.

Determining the three pillars of data to secure – customer data, staff information like social security numbers and home addresses as well as proprietary MathWorks source code – helped the team establish a course of action.

Company headquarters in Natick, MA house the three pillars of data and serves the company’s hubs in Asia and Europe. CheckPoint firewalls also serves as an intrusion detection and prevention system, enabling Habeeb’s team to do traffic shaping and control the type of data that flows across the company’s private global network. The company leverages Sophos Security software for protection of their servers and Kaspersky Endpoint Security software for the protection of their desktop systems.

“In the first half of 2015 email messages blocked at our email servers (i.e., including SPAM, viruses, denied IP, etc.) was ~91%. We received 127,505,819 messages and 116, 024,362 were blocked”

Current projects in play include Single sign-on for business applications and exploration Enterprise Mobility Management solutions.

“We’re not a big BYOD company as it relates to staff bringing in their own personal computer, but we do need control over devices – who has them, who owns them – and the ability to wipe them if necessary,” Habeeb said.

MathWorks’ IT team now includes five full time staff focused solely on security. They work directly with both product and business system development teams as well as facilitating end user awareness training across the company.

New hire orientation now includes built-in IT security training, and brown bag lunch sessions and training videos for employees to access on their own time help make security everyone’s business.

“We want to make security everyone’s business.”