Sep 03, 2021

Dental Services Provider Secures 30,000 Endpoints with Tanium

U.S. healthcare organization gains important visibility and control of devices across 800 offices in 24 states

By Tanium Staff

Plenty of companies provide end-user tech support, but how many do it while dental patients wait anxiously to have their teeth treated?

That’s just one of the challenges that faced a national dental-services provider based in California’s Orange County. Since 1994 the company has provided U.S. dental offices with business services that include IT, accounting, tax, legal and human resources (HR).

The service is thriving because it helps dental offices focus on what they do best — providing dental services — instead of running a business. But this approach also creates new challenges.

That’s because the company’s dental-office customers collectively operate some 30,000 endpoint devices, including Windows personal computers (PCs) and embedded medical devices. What’s more, these devices are located in some 840 offices across 25 U.S. states.

With so many endpoint devices spread across such a large area, keeping them running smoothly and securely wasn’t easy. “We needed a platform that was efficient, lightweight and able to run with only minimal resources,” says the service provider’s information security officer. “Yet it must still be able to get the job done.”

Turning to Tanium

To get that job done, the provider turned to Tanium’s unified platform. Now, with improved visibility into its endpoints, the company can respond quickly and efficiently to known vulnerabilities. Exposed endpoints are quickly identified and then patched.

As part of the implementation, the team created a custom dashboard that displays which endpoint devices need a software upgrade or patch.

The move to Tanium has also lowered the company’s costs for IT security and operations. This was achieved by consolidating some IT tools, replacing others.

The service provider also relied on Tanium to support its own digital transformation. That included a move to SD-WANs, refreshed servers and all-in-one PCs, as well as a shift from 2D to 3D dental imaging, supported by a custom artificial intelligence (AI) tool.

Now, when an endpoint has an issue, the dental-services provider can use Tanium to identify its cause. With Tanium Performance, the company can essentially roll back the clock to see where the problem originated.

“Tanium Performance is the most important tool we have for operations,” says the company’s information security officer. “It gives us clear visibility into what happened.”

Other Tanium benefits

Using Tanium has also helped the company remotely upgrade older Windows 7 PCs to the current Windows 10 release. And without needing to send technicians into the field.

One more benefit has been increased management of remote devices used by work-from-home (WFH) employees during the pandemic. During the company’s shift to WFH, it became clear that about two-thirds of all employees would need new laptops. Once those devices were delivered, Tanium helped by keeping them visible and easy to manage. As long as a device is connected to the internet, it’s detectable by Tanium.

Tanium also helped the company stand up a teledentistry platform. During the height of the pandemic, many dental offices closed except for emergency treatments. Tanium helped the company set up a system for video consultations. This way, dentists could determine whether a patient needed treatment urgently.

To support this, the dental services provider stood up a teledentistry platform. The company used Tanium as the engine that pushed out and installed the unified communications product at dental offices. With Tanium’s help, the job was completed in just 10 days — cleaned teeth not included.


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