Inside Story – City of Edinburgh Council

The City of Edinburgh Council is one of the largest authorities in Scotland with twenty thousand employees providing services that include planning, housing, transport, refuse collection, education, social care, revenue and benefits, and leisure facilities. Providing these services presents the Council with a number of communications and security challenges.

For example, they need to connect securely to the Government Secure Extranet. Citizens and employees need to be able to access various Council services securely over the internet when they are located outside the Council’s secure domain. These so-called inbound services include things like the council website, benefits online, council papers and the planning portal. And conversely, there are outbound services where forty thousand users on the Learning and Teaching Estate — and ten thousand users on the Corporate Estate — need to access the internet securely.

The Council wanted a fully-scalable solution on a single platform to reduce costs and admin resources. And they didn’t want it to need any additional resource from their side.

BT’s approach has achieved all of these requirements using products from our strategic partner Blue Coat. The solution gives the Council full control over all of their websites, and software on all the PCs meaning that the corporate internet policy is applied even when they’re not connected through the Council network. And it optimizes bandwidth between the internet and schools which maximizes the efficiency and cost-effectiveness.

Key stakeholders now have access to management information so that they can understand the internet activity and manage any problem areas. And BT have put in place a Helpdesk in case there are any queries.

Overall, the solution gives the Council the security they demand and the flexibility to meet their changing requirements. It protects the Council against online threats and helps to protect staff, residents and pupils when using the internet and online services.



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