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Case studies

Spam filtering boosts personnel productivity in Valio

Customer: Valio Oy



Solution: F-Secure Messaging Security Gateway, a centrally managed, scalable spam and malware filtering and email encryption solution that updates automatically
Users: 2,700 people

Benefits of the Solution

- Efficient spam filtering and anti-virus
- Filters email traffic to smartphones
- Email encryption allows Valio to send confidential information quickly
- Reduces unnecessary load from email servers
- Updates automatically, reduces the maintenance work by the IT admin
- Boosts personnel's work-time efficiency


Valio Oy is owned by Finnish milk producers. The company processes and markets primarily milk based products. The Valio Group comprises the parent company, Valio Oy, and its subsidiaries in the Baltic countries, Belgium, Russia, the United States, Sweden and China. In 2010, Valio Group's turnover was EUR 1,822 million and it employed some 4,200 people.

Critical email

Valio processes over 80% of the raw milk taken in by Finnish dairies. The group has 15 production plants in Finland, five of which produce fresh dairy products like milk, fermented milk, cream, yoghurt, sour cream and curd. The company's production plant in Helsinki produces juice and berry soups as well as whey and milk based drinks 50 million liters annually.

Valio has a range of some 1,000 products. The most important clients for the company are the retail trade, hotels, restaurants, food service and industry.

- Our production runs 24/7 throughout the year. We also handle the transportation directly to our clients. Email is a very important tool for our operations and we could no longer do without it. We use email encryption for sending confidential email, says Peter Bretag, IT Manager in Valio Oy.

69% of email was spam

Previously, Valio had site specific email servers, which caused considerable traffic between sites. According to the 30-day report from the company's current spam filtering solution, 69% of email was spam. In addition to email filtering, Valio needed a reliable solution for email encryption.

- Spam irritated people and consumed time. We were required to get rid of the spam completely, as also our top management was targeted. Now we deployed also a solution that allows us to send encrypted email messages.

- Security products helped us to resolve the problem. We evaluated different security solutions for some 3 months. For spam filtering, we tested 3 different products, and we found that F-Secure Messaging Security Gateway is superior to the other products. The solution has an email encryption feature that is reliable and simple enough. This is why we deployed it everywhere in Valio, says Bretag.

F-Secure spam filtering as the solution

A centrally managed, automatically updated F-Secure Messaging Security Gateway solution effectively filters email traffic and separates spam from legitimate messages.

- The F-Secure solution filters spam away. This has hardware and software integrated in one package. Automatic security updates cover the whole solution, both the operating system and the security software, Bretag commented.

- Our email is decentralized on many servers. Moreover, the traffic and email filtering have been duplexed. All our workstations and email servers have anti-virus and firewalls. The same F-Secure solution also filters the email traffic to our smartphones.

- We have outsourced IT data center services to Fujitsu Service, which monitors the hardware. If Fujitsu or Valio has a major problem, F-Secure's direct support service can access the hardware to provide help 24/7 throughout the year.

- We receive daily reports that tell us how the filtering has worked. The system is centrally managed. Because of this, there is no need to have maintenance services on multiple locations. Therefore the solution brings cost savings on both hardware and personnel. The email encryption feature included in the F-Secure system is easy to use, and the recipient does not need any special software. The recipient downloads the encrypted message using credentials that came with the first message.

F-Secure's email encryption minimizes risks

F-Secure spam filtering is used by the whole Valio as well as its nearby subsidiaries. It is used also by the owners of the company, milk producers' co-operatives and Valio's Mutual Insurance Company. Deployment of the spam filtering did not require any training for the personnel of Valio. The company instructed personnel on how to send encrypted email messages. With two buttons, a person can choose whether to send the message as a regular email or as an encrypted email.

- Spam filtering boosts our personnel's work-time efficiency and it took away the previous irritation. Email functionality improved and there was no more spam. We also minimize our risks with the email encryption feature. Further, the solution saves IT management's time and effort, said Bretag.

- We continuously try to make Valio more efficient with new, secure IT solutions. In future, it is possible that we will also utilize new features that will become available in F-Secure solutions.

Download the case study as PDF:

English, Finnish