Zix signs $450.000 contract with health benefits company and three-year contract with Cedars-Sinai MC

Dallas 12 December 2003Zix Corporation, a global provider of protection, management, and delivery solutions for electronic communications, has signed a new contract with one of the largest publicly traded health benefits companies in the United States for hosted anti-spam and anti-virus services, along with a renewal of its secure e-messaging contract. The contracts, which together have a value of $450,000 on an annual basis, will provide protection services to more than 20.000 employees. In addition, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, one of the largest non-profit academic medical centres in the Western United States, has selected ZixCorp for its secure e-messaging services. The organisation chose ZixCorp to protect private health information and to meet the e-mail safeguard requirements of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA).


ZixCorp will provide anti-spam and anti-virus services for the health benefits organisation through ZixMessage Inspector, which will be hosted in the ZixSecure Center, ZixCorp's world-class data centre. As a hosted and managed service, ZixMessage Inspector operates outside the company's network and acts as a forward perimeter defense against external e-mail threats, protects the customer's network, increases worker productivity, and reduces wasted network bandwidth. Ongoing administration, upgrades, and maintenance become the responsibility of ZixCorp so that the company can remain focused on its core business. The service also provides real-time updates to virus and spam definitions and content scanning lexicons, thus ensuring the highest level of protection available.

In addition to the purchase of ZixMessage Inspector, the customer has renewed its contract for secure e-messaging services using ZixVPM (Virtual Private Messenger) and ZixPort. ZixVPM is an enterprise-wide solution that provides policy-driven secure e-mail to ensure complete interoperability with other organisations whether they currently use ZixCorp services or not. ZixPort provides the health benefits company's more than 10 million members with private and secure communications capabilities through a branded secure Web portal. By protecting patient information sent via e-mail, this leading payer is working to comply with the privacy requirements of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA).

The entire service is operated within the ZixSecure Center, a SysTrust certified, fully redundant network operations centre dedicated to secure e-message processing with a demonstrated 99,99 percent availability. Organisations like this one recognize that ZixCorp delivers the expertise and dedicated resources necessary to best address risk and cost, enabling the company to focus on more strategic initiatives.

"This is a validation of our recent product growth strategy", stated John Ryan, chairman, president, and CEO of ZixCorp. "In just a few months since our recent acquisition of the Web Inspector and Message Inspector products, our existing secure e-messaging customers are already adopting and benefiting from our new anti-spam and anti-virus offerings. ZixMessage Inspector is clearly one of the leading anti-spam and content filtering solutions available in the market. We are uniquely positioned to offer our full portfolio of solutions hosted, on-site, or co-sourced."

"We now have three of the top six payers in the country, all of which have renewed, and more than a third of all the Blue Cross and Blue Shield licensees", continued John Ryan. "This, combined with over a hundred of the leading provider hospitals from across the country, has resulted in ZixCorp becoming the leader in secure messaging for health care."

Cedars-Sinai utilized the ZixAuditor assessment service to evaluate e-mail security vulnerabilities and purchased a ZixVPM system, which will protect Internet-bound e-mail which contains sensitive or confidential information. ZixVPM will enable the medical centre to adhere to company-wide security policy that requires that any data sent out via the Internet be encrypted. The service provides a secure e-messaging gateway without the need to create, deploy, or manage end-user encryption keys and software. The ZixVPM will replace the mix of VPN tunnels, PGP encryption, and SSH file transfers currently in use. It will also address requests from some physicians to provide a secure and private communications e-mail channel with their patients.

"After conducting our ZixAuditor assessment, we realized how much sensitive information is being sent out via e-mail and that our current solutions could be improved to ensure the secure transmission of sensitive or confidential data over the Internet", stated Spencer SooHoo, Ph.D, acting director of technology for Cedars-Sinai. "ZixCorp gives us the ability to apply one solution to address a variety of problems."

Cedars-Sinai has affiliations with over 1800 physicians and comprises 8000 employees, 2000 volunteers, and 15.000 fundraising support group members. In addition, the medical centre teaches over 245 residents and fellows in nearly 60 graduate medical education programmes. "It's significant that as ZixCorp grows its presence on the west coast, we gain one of the most respected hospitals in the nation", stated Dennis Heathcote, vice president of products and marketing for ZixCorp. "When organisations compare us head-to-head with other communications protection solutions, our interoperability, ease of use, and especially our send-to-anyone technology wins out a vast majority of the time."

Cedars-Sinai is internationally renowned for its diagnostic and treatment capabilities and its broad spectrum of programmes and services, as well as breakthrough in biomedical research and superlative medical education. It ranks among the top 10 non-university hospitals in the nation for its research activities.

Zix Corporation offers a range of solutions to protect organisations from viruses, spam, and electronic attack, as well as enabling secure electronic communications, such as e-mail encryption and e-prescribing. ZixCorp helps organisations of any size to streamline operations, mitigate risks, and leverage the efficiencies of e-messaging. ZixCorp also provides care delivery solutions for e-prescribing and e-consulting that enable physicians to leverage technology for better patient care.

Leslie Versweyveld

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