Managed Wi-Fi helps a business meet operational security requirements while still offering public Wi-Fi to customers.
It’s been just six months since a Texas printing and shipping store added a Viasat Business Hotspot. Now, the store managers can’t imagine doing business without it.
“I would give it a big thumbs-up,” said Karlene Martella, who manages the local outpost of a national shipping chain.
Viasat Business Hotspots make business functions easier for customers while bolstering the security of the shop’s business network and daily operations, Martella said.
A Viasat Business Hotspot paired with the Viasat Business Internet service provides coverage up to 2,500 square feet and allows businesses to create two separate, secure networks: a private network for business operations and a second public guest network.
The shipping store needed a way for customers to connect to the internet and send pictures to the store’s printers via Wi-Fi. But allowing patrons access to the business’s own Wi-Fi network was a security concern.
“We had a big need for some kind of a way for customers to send links to us because we do a lot of heavy printing,” Martella said. “A lot of people were coming in with laptops and external hard drives, thinking they could just plug into our system and print.”
That wasn’t going to work from a security angle, especially if customers had corrupted equipment getting on their network.
“If our network is compromised, it doesn’t just compromise the printing aspect; it would also compromise the shipping side, which of course is our main source of business. So before the Viasat Business Hotspot, we couldn’t let customers access our system, period. With the service, we can just give them the information for the public guest Wi-Fi connection, and our business operations network remains separate and safe.”
Printing manager Jordan Gaskamp agreed.
“We have some high-profile clients – doctors, lawyers, etc.,” he said. “By having that guest network, we don’t have to worry about people getting into our store files.”
Ease of use
Equally as important as the security benefits is the ease with which customers can now conduct business at the store. Before the hotspot was installed, a customer’s best option for making a connection was with their own cellphones. But because the building has a metal roof that interferes with reception, customers often had to step into the parking lot – a scenario that was inconvenient at best, and prohibitive during nasty weather.
“Now, we just give them the password and they log onto the guest Wi-Fi,” Martella said. “It’s literally a five-second procedure. They’re on our Wi-Fi and they can start sending stuff.”
The process is now fast and simple – even for people with limited technical know-how.
“It connects immediately with no long, convoluted password,” Gaskamp said. “That’s a great plus.”
“We haven’t had a single issue,” he added. “I would highly recommend it.”
Learn more about Viasat Business Hotspots here.