Security and accessibility for FMV workstations

About FMV

The Swedish Defence Materiel Administration (FMV) supplies technical solutions to strengthen Sweden’s security. FMV procures, operates and decommissions systems and services for the Swedish Armed Forces and other authorities in the civil security sector.

What FMV needed

FMV’s operations are conducted in several locations around the country but are project managed and lead from Stockholm, where FMV’s management and a substantial proportion of its technical expertise and business competence is located.

Performance of everyday operations in an efficient and secure manner requires a modern workstation that enables increased accessibility while complying with FMV’s high security standards. With this in mind, FMV took the strategic decision in 2006 to update and modernize its client workstations.

The Challenges

Security and secrecy requirements are extremely high within FMV. Since much of the material processed is secret and therefore classified, high requirements are set for IT workstations.

Previously, all FMV employees had two computers – one for internal use and one for external communication. This was both time-consuming and frustrating since users were not able to mix information in the computers. Employees were also forced to work with internal material at their fixed workstation at the office.

Following a procurement comprising an exhaustive requirements specification including security for the platform’s design, an outsourcing contract was signed with CGI in 2006 for which the workstation service comprised a key and substantial element.

The solutions

In 2006, CGI commenced work on the new Secure FMV Workstation (SFAP) concept and a common technical platform for the digital workstation was produced. Standardized hardware packages were implemented with encrypted discs for increased security.

Every new computer was equipped with a personal firewall and antivirus software to protect against intrusion. As a further measure to increase security, only approved software in its original packaging was permitted for use on the computers. Employees are not permitted to install anything themselves and must go via CGI for security reasons.

Every computer was equipped with a smart card reader. All users were then registered and issued with a personal smart card that they use in the computer to log in. Accessibility with the aid of SFAP is extremely important for FMV’s employees. Through the use of a virtual private network connection (VPN), FMV’s employees can now access the majority of internal material through an Internet connection irrespective of their actual location. The Internet connection can be fixed-line or mobile broadband and the employees thus become fully mobile.

The result

At present, 1,540 FMV employees have access to a modern, efficient and secure client workstation. A standardized hardware package enables employees to choose whether they wish to work with modern laptops or desktops all equipped with Windows 7 and Office 2010. Handheld devices such as smartphones are also available.

Standardization also means that FMV avoids managing an extensive volume of computers, systems and software which would be both time-consuming and not cost-effective.

Using the new secure VPN connection, SFAP has also become the solution for FMV’s mobility needs. Today, employees can work with internal material while travelling, from home or even their holiday home.

In addition to SFAP, CGI also manages FMV’s application and server operations as well as communication services, WAN-LAN and service desk. The contract between CGI and FMV was signed in 2006 for a three-year period and extended in 2009 through 2012.

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