How AutoNation Addresses Security Hygiene

AutoNation, the largest automotive retailer in the United States, employs about 26,000 people in over 300 locations nationwide. Although all of AutoNation’s locations are connected to a central IT network, the company had struggled to meet the patching expectations of its CISO, Ken Athanasiou. As a result, critical patches weren’t getting deployed in a timely manner and objectives were not being met. Ken’s team knew they had a problem; however, Tanium allowed them to see how big the problem actually was and to track in real time the effectiveness of remediation activities.

AutoNation first used Tanium to deploy a large scale update of Microsoft BitLocker (a disk encryption feature) across its environment—and do it within 30 days. The AutoNation team was skeptical it could be done in that timeframe without massive manpower resources. Leveraging the skills of the Tanium Technical Account Management team and the extensible capabilities of the Tanium platform, AutoNation accomplished the deployment on schedule without additional manpower requirements. This success saved AutoNation tens of thousands of dollars and demonstrated the potential of Tanium’s unique capabilities within AutoNation’s environment.

AutoNation's Challenges

Although all 26,000 AutoNation employees at more than 300 locations nationwide are connected to the company’s central IT network, AutoNation struggled to deploy critical patches in a timely manner. The security team knew they had a problem, but couldn’t see how big it actually was.

The Tanium Solution

Complete Coverage and 99% First Pass Patch Succes

With Tanium, AutoNation was able to see for the first time that hundreds of thousands of patches had not been correctly applied, including some going back a decade. AutoNation now deploys patches at a first pass success rate of over 99% and was able to install a new third-party anti-virus software to all of the company’s 20,000 machines in just four days.

The visibility we gained with Tanium was incredibly impressive. Classifying inventory and discovering IoT devices has been made possible.

Ken Athanasiou, CISO for AutoNation

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