Gold Fields Ghana brings the cloud down to earth
Johannesburg – Gold Fields Ghana, one of the worlds largest unhedged* producers of gold, has contracted Mimecast, the holistic email management company offering SaaS-based email archiving, continuity, security and policy control, to solve its e-mail availability and compliance challenges. Gold Fields Ghana is the Ghanaian operation of Gold Fields Limited. The head office is in the capital, Accra, and it has two operating mines.
Steve Larbi, group IT manager for Gold Fields Ghana says, “Email is a widely-used, mission-critical tool at the mines. Six hundred and fifty staff use email for the execution of duties every day.”
Given the importance of email to the organisation, Gold Fields Ghana made a decision in July 2008 to standardise on Microsoft Exchange 2003. Having suffered “a fair amount” of spam under the previous mail regime, Mimecast was assigned to fix the spam problem and secure the mail system from external threats.
Hosted in South Africa and two other global locations, Mimecast has triple redundancy built into its network infrastructure, offering carrier-grade security, reliability and availability. In this setup, mail passes through Mimecast’s seven layer smart perimeter, is cleansed of spam and viruses, and only then delivered to the Gold Fields Exchange environment.
Business Development and Alliance Director for Mimecast South Africa, Grant Hodgkinson, says: “Mimecast provides tight integration into our clients’ email systems to provide seamless and secure failover and failback with no loss of data or service. In the event of an email server outage, employees can continue to work uninterrupted within Outlook or through a Web console. Since the email management functions are delivered before any messages enter Gold Fields Ghana’s network perimeter, additional benefits have been realised such as reduced bandwidth requirements and consistent policy application regardless of physical location.”
All mail is archived securely in Mimecast’s data centres, with complete chains of custody in tact to guard against tampering of information, and is permanently searchable within seconds for recovery of lost emails, or for e-discovery in the case of litigation.
Mimecast’s connection-based spam filtering, powered by the Mimecast Global Reputation Service, has proven effective for Gold Fields Ghana. Larbi says the solution brought about a drastic reduction in spam. “There have certainly not been any user complaints since then, and no false positives.”
Hodgkinson, says, “Gold Fields is listed on five different stock exchanges, including the Johannesburg and New York Stock Exchange. This puts it under enormous pressure to ensure perfect governance. The standards adhered to by Gold Fields are incredibly high, surpassing the legislative compliance requirements that are imposed on most businesses. Gold Fields’ trust in Mimecast’s Unified E-mail Management is a great endorsement for our technology.”
In addition to the business-critical archival and spam filtering, Larbi finds the e-mail branding opportunities of Mimecast attractive, where centralised stationery and targeted messages improve external communications. “We’re working on adopting that,” he says.
Larbi concludes that Gold Fields Ghana has enjoyed a hitch-free implementation, with responsive support from Mimecast’s technical support professionals, excellent functionality and outstanding value. “This is one solution I would market to other professionals in the industry”, he concludes.
* Unhedged gold producers do not forward-sell their gold using derivative
Mimecast delivers cloud-based email management for Microsoft Exchange, including archiving, continuity and security. By unifying disparate and fragmented email environments into one holistic solution that is always available from the cloud, Mimecast minimizes risk and reduces cost and complexity, while providing total end-to-end control of email. Founded in the United Kingdom in 2003, Mimecast serves approximately 4,000 customers worldwide and has offices in Europe, North America, Africa and the Channel Islands.
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