Pictured left to right: Chris Smith, Jonny Rae and Andrew Mayo
Based in Leeds, Cyber Threat Security Limited (CTS) is a specialist supplier of software and professional services. These enable businesses to maintain cyber safety, securely manage data and comply with industry regulations such as GDPR. Its team are experts in their field, boasting ex-military and ex-NATO defence personnel and some of the most rigorous cyber security certifications in the industry. The strength of their solutions has made them a popular choice amongst large companies in the corporate and retail sectors that are often targets for cyber-attacks.
Prior to founding CTS, both Andrew Mayo and Chris Smith, CTO and CEO respectively, had worked in the communications channel for several years. This meant that when working with one customer, a large high street jewellery chain, they instantly saw the potential for massive cost savings in the customer’s communications estate.
Chris explains, “The customer had contracted directly with a large carrier that wasn’t providing very much support or visibility of their lines and services. The result was spiralling costs well above what was expected. They really needed to take back control of their communications estate, rationalise their services and gain access to in-depth management reports for the business’s various sites.”
Never ones to leave anything on the table, CTS put together a proposal for overhauling the customer’s communications network. Supplying communications in combination with its security solutions meant CTS was able to deliver even greater benefits for the customer. Andrew explains, “Basically, any Log Emitting Device (LED) can be monitored and protected by our multi layered defence solutions. Overlaying our cyber security protocols on top of the customer’s communications estate meant we could easily extend our security services, providing protective monitoring, multi layered endpoint protection and defending their entire network from cyber-attacks.”
To monitor and bill the customer for their communication and connectivity services, CTS required a billing platform. Chris explains, “To build a competitive service offering, we were keen to source services from a number of different telecoms carriers. This meant that we needed an agnostic billing system that could take call data records (CDRs) from all suppliers, rate them according to set tariffs, then generate one consolidated bill for all services.”
Chris and Andrew began looking at the billing software market to find a suitable solution and arranged for a demonstration of Union Street Technologies’ aBILLity billing platform. Chris continues, “We were already aware of aBILLity because it’s so widely used by communication providers. The fact that it was a tried and tested solution was obviously reassuring and, during the demonstration, it was clear that it had all the features we needed.
“A key feature from our point of view, was the option of a white-labelled end-user facing billing portal. The customer could use this to access their billing data and conduct their own reporting. It’s very powerful and provides the granular level of analysis that they need.
“The platform can also be configured to search CDRs for signs of toll fraud and will alert us by email if it finds anything suspicious. This was a great value add because it complements our existing cyber security services really well and enables us to offer customers an added layer of protection.”
Union Street also supplied hosting and bureau services to complement its aBILLity system. Andrew explains, “Because Union Street host the aBILLity software in their data centre, we didn’t need to purchase, manage or maintain any additional server hardware. We also chose to use their bureau service as this meant we could outsource much of the work involved with preparing and dispatching the bills to Union Street. These services made it easy and cost-effective to just get started without diverting a lot of resources into managing it.”
Following deployment by Union Street, CTS and their customer have been pleased with the results. Chris continues, “During the on-boarding process, Union Street conducted a detailed analysis of the whole estate and found even more cost savings. In addition to billing for communications services, the platform can also process service charges for our security products. This means we can consolidate everything into one bill which the customer loves. Union Street’s Bureau Team also create a monthly report with some really useful analytics and metrics.”
Speaking for Union Street, Business Development Manager, Jonny Rae states, “Using aBILLity, CTS have been able to deliver communications services for their customer in a way that ensures accuracy and profitability. Because aBILLity is highly scalable, CTS have the option to offer communications services to all other companies in their customer base, as well as new business opportunities. This adds a potentially very lucrative revenue stream and can help to maximise customer retention.”