Why IT Security matters, today: for engineering companies

Recently, a customer of ours pointed me to grabcad.com, a community where engineers from all over the world publish CAD models et al. to boast their skills and “to help other engineers and to speed up development”. What you can find there are full blown models from almost all major engineering and development vendors. Stuff they would never want to appear outside their own premises, because it is their core value, their intellectual property!

Our customer is happy to have Citrix XenDesktop in place as environment even for their engineers, who work from Hungary. Due to restrictive policies they don’t have a chance to copy models outside the network – even e-mail fails, because the files are larger than the maximum allowed attachment size (one reason why you would want to keep that down).

This is a striking argument showing what you can gain with XenApp and XenDesktop and what risks are out there for your IP. It is much easier to provide centralized compute power even for 3D modelling and put your data into a safe harbor network zone only accessible from these instances than to deploy all sorts of content inspection, data leak prevention and port security to cut the possibilities for efficient performance of your workforces.

This is an example I quickly found on GrabCAD showing a complete V12 motor with all nuts and bolts. 22MB, online (browser) 3D viewer enabling selection of assemblies, explode view of all or selected assemblies and so on. Stunning.