Receiving compliments and positive feedback from anyone is an excellent energy boost, but when it is from your customer, it can elevate the mood and vibe for the entire team. I recently got a chance to chat with Justin Le, IT Director at oil and gas financier Par Pacific Holdings about his experience with Balbix and was blown away with some of the results he shared. Read on for some highlights from our conversation.
Ti Saunders: First, let’s start off with learning a little about you, Justin. Tell us about yourself and how you ended up with a great company like Par Pacific Holdings.
Justin Le: I have been fascinated by technology since I received my first computer when I was a kid. I am passionate about learning and helping others. Since Texas is my home, I’ve been fortunate in my career to be close to all the major oil and gas organizations within the energy corridor; those work experiences led me to Par Pacific Holdings. Back in 2013, Par Pacific was in startup mode. I joined because it was a huge challenge that I embraced and wanted to help our management team grow the organization and help the communities we serve!
TS: What were some of your challenges before you discovered our product? `What was your process like? What were you looking to improve?
JL: Life before Balbix? It was extremely challenging to understand our vulnerability posture. The previous tool was difficult to manage due to the level of complexity required to operate it. We had to schedule many different scans, across different regions, across different assets and that was just the beginning. If the scan did not run, we would not have any data to act on. To add to it, it was hard for our team to retrieve the data to quickly identify and prioritize vulnerabilities without long discussions and planning, which delayed our mitigation timeline.
TS: What did the frustration feel like as you tried to solve that problem?
JL: It was very frustrating and overwhelming. The complexity of the previous system added more vulnerabilities into our landscape. We were in constant reactive mode as it was difficult to validate if a patch we implemented mitigated the vulnerability.
TS: What was different about Balbix?
JL: I have a strong admiration for the Balbix team as you have developed a product that is very simple to manage and enables us to see our near real-time security posture. This has helped our team to effectively identify and prioritize vulnerabilities without the configuration of scans! We are a very nimble team so we love the simplicity of the product.
“Balbix has developed a product that is very simple to manage and provides real time security posture management which has helped our team to effectively identify and prioritize vulnerabilities without the configuration of scans! We are a very nimble team, so we love the simplicity of the product…”
TS: Take us to the moment when you realized our product was actually working to solve your problem.
JL: I was thrilled when I logged in to Balbix and saw the entire puzzle of our environment in one dashboard. The visibility of critical assets, the risk insights, the cool and futuristic sunburst charts, the risk score, the trends over time, and honestly, I can go on and on. But I think most important is the ability to see the complete picture of our assets and the vulnerabilities.
TS: Tell us what life looks like now that your problem is solved or being solved.
JL: Daily, I log in to Balbix to understand our risk score and vulnerability posture. If I notice an anomaly within the dashboard, I drill down on the details to effectively retrieve and share data with the rest of the team for treatment. Quarterly, I partner with the Balbix support team (a smart and dedicated team, I must say!) to report and share data from Balbix to our executive and board members. Our mentality is that we cannot control outside threats, but we can control the weaknesses within our ecosystem. Balbix provides the extra manpower to help point our focus in the right direction.
“Balbix shows us the entire puzzle of our environment in one dashboard. The visibility of critical assets, the risk insights, the cool and futuristic sunburst charts, the risk score, the trends over time…I can go on and on. But I think the most important is the ability to see the complete picture of our assets and vulnerabilities.”
TS: Can you share some metrics or data points that highlight the improvement that you see post Balbix?
JL: Within the Balbix dashboard, I can see IoT assets that were not reported with the previous tool. We continue to make great strides in patching our workstations as the MTTP has gone down from 104 days to 50 days.
“We continue to make great strides in patching our workstations as the MTTP has gone down from 104 days to 50 days.”