Deciphex Uses JumpCloud to Secure Sensitive Healthcare Data & Ensure Compliance

Deciphex is a software development company that builds AI-powered solutions that help pathologists work more productively, improve patient outcomes, and accelerate drug development. Founded in 2017 and headquartered in Dublin, Ireland, Deciphex has 250 employees, many of whom work remotely. In October 2023, Deciphex announced it had raised €10 million in venture debt after closing a €14.4 million Series B round earlier that year.

Struggling to Manage & Secure a Patchwork IT Ecosystem at Scale

In December 2021, Ben Cranks joined Deciphex as an infrastructure and support manager, overseeing Diagnexia, an online clinical pathology department that provides diagnostics and consultancy services. After building a career working in pre-sales for big-name tech companies, Cranks was ready to change gears and move to a job he found more satisfying.

“This Diagnexia role was a chance to move to a mission-led organization and help make a real direct impact on people’s lives,” Cranks says. “We help pathologists get diagnoses quicker, which helps patients move on with their lives faster — either starting their treatments sooner or being told that everything is okay.” 

In December 2023, Deciphex was named Medtech Company of the Year at the Irish Medtech Awards; the company was also given the Digital Health Innovation of the Year award.

“We were very flattered by that,” Cranks continues.

When Cranks started at Deciphex, he was the company’s 85th employee; today, the organization is powered by a team of 250. Shortly thereafter, Pedro Accarini came on board to complement Cranks, jumpstarting the IT team together, with Cranks interfacing with external pathologists and Accarini serving as the in-house IT resource.

I was the first IT person dedicated toward Diagnexia. What I quickly realized is that we did the classic organic growth thing where everybody buys bits from here and there when they need to. So we had a very diverse fleet of tools, and it was significantly challenging to manage. When you don’t have an enterprise IT background, you don’t understand how challenges like this stack up as you scale. 

Ben Cranks, Infrastructure and Support Manager, Deciphex

Choosing JumpCloud for Flexibility & Platform-agnosticism 

At the time, the company was having problems enforcing policies and started looking for a solution.

“We went out to the market and looked at other domain solutions, but many were very dependent on being bought into the ecosystem,” Cranks continues. “It didn’t make sense for us to invest in a major vendor’s platform for domain control and policy enforcement when they essentially want you to go all in with them, or not go in at all.” 

After searching for an “Azure AD alternative” on Google, Cranks and his team came across several different vendors.

We looked through all of them and found that JumpCloud was by far the most impressive due to the features, ease of use, help, and support. What we liked about JumpCloud is that it allows that flexibility of not having to lock into a single ecosystem.

Ben Cranks, Infrastructure and Support Manager, Deciphex

Cranks and his team were also drawn to JumpCloud’s robust documentation.

“Any time you’re talking about group domain controllers and policy enforcements, you’re going to need those docs, and that was particularly key for us as well.” 

Liking what they saw, Deciphex decided to move forward with JumpCloud for policy enforcement. At this point, Cranks and his team launched a small internal pilot program that went off without a hitch. 

“Once we were satisfied, we pushed it out pretty rapidly to get that compliance and policy enforcement in place,” Cranks says. “Honestly, the tool was so easy and straightforward to work with. You just throw it on machines and fire it up.”

Improving Security & Compliance and Protecting Their Reputation

As Warren Buffett says, it takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to destroy it. As a company that operates in the healthcare space, security and compliance are top of mind for Deciphex. 

“Reputation is the number-one asset in the medical space — it’s the apex around which the whole organization pivots,” Cranks says. “No one would touch us with two barge poles taped together if we couldn’t protect data. We’re pushing into a space where we’re not familiar to the players in the space. Oftentimes, the first time they hear about us is when we walk through the door. I would rather that continue to be the case rather than the first time they hear about us is in the newspaper because we lost patient data. That would be fatal to us.” 

With JumpCloud sitting in the middle of its IT footprint, Deciphex can take a proactive security and compliance stance, keeping sensitive personally identifiable information (PII) safe and the company’s reputation intact. 

“JumpCloud is a major part of our compliance journey,” Cranks explains. “When we’re on a call with an auditor, we can stand over our devices and say, ‘Yes, we’re employing encryption, we’re collecting the keys, we’re preventing users from doing x and we’re preventing users from doing y, and we can prove that we can enforce those policies through a single pane of glass thanks to JumpCloud. It’s not something we have to pause and wait for answers. We can show them right away, say, ‘Here are the controls, here’s how we’ve grouped everyone.’ It’s really easy to walk someone through that story.” 

To ensure that only authorized users can access applications and data — and that users can access the resources they need without any issues — Accarini introduced JumpCloud’s single sign-on (SSO) capabilities. To further enhance the company’s security framework, he rolled out SSO along with Google Workspace password synchronization and a stronger password policy. In addition to strengthening security, it’s also made life easier for the two-person IT team.

“SSO has greatly reduced my volume,” Cranks says.

On top of this, Accarini implemented automatic Windows update policies and has overseen BitLocker management via JumpCloud.

“This ensures our data protection measures are both efficient and scalable,” he explains.

Improved Device Management, Onboarding & Offboarding

As a cloud-native organization with no local servers and no local domains, all the resources Deciphex employees use live in the cloud. 

“They’re all tied to JumpCloud in the background,” Cranks explains. “When we need to retire folks or separate from them, it’s really easy to lock them out.”

In the event an employee’s laptop goes missing, Cranks can “go straight into JumpCloud, tick a few boxes, and make sure the machine is wiped on its next reboot — we already know the device is encrypted.”

As the internal IT resource, Accarini is tasked with getting devices out to new employees; JumpCloud makes the process of remotely enrolling and managing local users a breeze.

I get a new device, install a JumpCloud agent, sign into the device from the cloud, add the user to the right group, and software and policies are deployed automatically. JumpCloud has greatly simplified the process of enrolling devices to users; each unit is ready to ship in 15 or 20 minutes. 

Pedro Accarini, IT Manager, Deciphex

Future-proofing IT

As Deciphex continues to grow, Cranks says JumpCloud has scaled “perfectly” alongside it. 

“We’ve never had to worry about adding 20 more users and whether JumpCloud would struggle,” Cranks says. “That’s never been a concern of ours.” 

As the company’s needs become more sophisticated, JumpCloud continues expanding its offerings, delivering new features that Deciphex needs at the perfect times.

“We’ve seen the product mature,” Cranks explains. “That’s what we like about JumpCloud: It’s growing the way we are. More and more bits are coming in when we need them, and that’s key to us unlocking the benefits of being cloud-centric and cloud-native.” 

Building the Perfect Tech Stack

Unlike other solutions on the market, Cranks enjoys the fact that JumpCloud isn’t trying to “tie me into other products.”

“Many other vendors clearly want you to purchase their other products, and if you don’t, things are quite challenging,” he says. 

That’s not the case with JumpCloud.

“Whatever tools are best for our business, I can integrate them with JumpCloud, and JumpCloud will make the experience work,” Cranks concludes.

Learn More About JumpCloud 

JumpCloud changes the way IT administrators manage their organizations by providing a comprehensive and flexible cloud directory platform. From one pane of glass, manage user identities and resource access, secure Mac, Windows, and Linux devices, and get a full view of your environment.

To see the power of JumpCloud with your own eyes, request a demo or start a 30-day trial today.

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