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Wright State University

“As a telecom manager, my biggest area of concern was trunk health and utilization. I got an idea of trunk utilization inbound and outbound, generating detail on trunk type. On the inbound side, I never had access to that before.”

Steve Nickell
Telecom Manager

CUSTOMER Wright State University, named for aviation pioneers, Orville and Wilbur Wright, has nearly 16,000 students, 750 faculty members and 1,380 non-faculty staff. Its Dayton, Ohio facilities include 24 academic and 26 student residential buildings across two campuses.
PROBLEM Steve Nickell, WSU’s Telecom Manager, was looking for ways to reduce costs and enhance security and control over connections between WSU’s phone and data networks. Nickell was aware that although WSU provides Internet access through a dedicated broadband connection, some students and faculty still used modems to dial out to ISPs (Internet Service Providers), tying up WSU phone bandwidth and creating unsecured connections into WSU’s data network.
SOLUTION In the summer of 2002, Nickell found the answer to his needs in SecureLogix’s ETM® System, an integrated voice security, performance management, and usage reporting platform that works with any mix of legacy or VoIP vendors and systems in the enterprise voice network. The ETM System was installed on several of WSU’s campus PRI spans as part of a 60-day TeleWatch Secure SM Assessment Service. The trial was a success. Nickell has been managing and securing WSU’s voice network with the SecureLogix® ETM System ever since.

Based upon an analysis of modem traffic data revealed by the ETM System’s logging and reporting capabilities, Nickell configured ETM Voice Firewall policies by phone extension groups to selectively allow and monitor student’s ISP access via modems, while automatically terminating ISP access by employees whose computers had access to sensitive data. Policies were also configured to monitor and terminate select inbound modem calls posing threats to network security, including unauthorized inbound calls to the PBX’s own modem port. WSU may eventually place some limits on student residential ISP access as well, to prevent music piracy and other types of illegal downloads.

The ETM Usage Manager’s report writing tool allows Nickell to generate reports that provide university-wide visibility into their telecom resource and network usage, abusive and costly calling patterns, toll fraud incidences, and telecom/data network security issues. In response to WSU’s comptroller’s request for a study on trunk usage, Nickell found that inbound traffic was twice the volume of outbound traffic. On the basis of this and other call traffic information provided by the ETM System, Nickell put all of the university’s telecom services out to bid and was able to get better terms from WSU’s current carriers.

Equally important, the ETM Usage Manager reports of usage metrics, including utilization costs, allowed Nickell to optimize trunk configurations and lower rates by using DOD (Direct Outward Dialing) trunks. He then used the ETM System to verify that the PBX was correctly configured to route only outgoing calls through the DOD trunks.

Nickell uses the ETM Performance Manager to monitor, in real-time, the enterprise-wide health-and-status, signaling error and availability conditions. The Performance Manager provides Nickell with alerts and documentation to indicate frame and bit slips on circuits, and the location of the errors — whether internal to the PBX or in the local Central Office (CO). Armed with the metrics provided by the ETM System, Nickell is able to assume a proactive position in enforcing service level agreements with his telecom service providers.



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