New York State Homes and Community Renewal (HCR) provides affordable housing to constituents across the state. Understanding its mission helps Citrix to provide the most comprehensive solution available to meet HCR’s needs. HCR is made up of multiple renewal agencies that include finance and development, housing preservation, and community renewal. In order to serve these constituents more efficiently, IT needs to be able to streamline resources more effectively. The consolidation of information technology resources between agencies can provide centralized administration and governance while providing the best consolidated cost, quick return on investment, and a nimble infrastructure for adjusting to agency technology needs.
What technology foundation does HCR need in order to achieve these goals? When it comes to providing information technology services to a distributed workforce, it’s all about the application. HCR uses Citrix to provide a secure application access solution to employees to ensure that those working in an office or in the field can access mission-critical applications on any device, anywhere, at any time. They also have robust features like single-instance management and the ability to update applications once versus using an enterprise endpoint management solution that must touch each device. This simplifies the process for application updates and security patches, providing a significant advantage by reducing administration overhead.
Citrix XenApp is the foundation that enables this functionality and when paired with Citrix NetScaler together, creates the most comprehensive and secure remote access solution for application access. So how do they do it? Let’s examine conceptually how XenApp can be used to provide application access security:
In this configuration, both NetScaler Gateway and the Web Interface server are deployed in the DMZ. NetScaler is deployed in front of the Web Interface server to ensure all external connections go through NetScaler Gateway. The initial user connection goes to NetScaler Gateway and is then redirected to the Web Interface server for authentication. Web Interface then interacts with the Secure Ticket Authority to provide the user access to a published resource. To add an additional layer of security, Web Interface can be deployed in the internal network. In this scenario, NetScaler Gateway would handle all authentication requests and then pass on the request to Web Interface. Web Interface interacts with the Secure Ticket Authority and generates an ICA file to ensure that ICA traffic is routed through NetScaler Gateway to the server farm.
Not only can Citrix provide a robust solution for application access, but we also provide the most secure solution to protect constituent data. Since application data never leaves the datacenter, government compliance is assured while still providing the flexibility of application access from any device, anywhere, at any time.
In state and local government agencies, budget and cost control, security, shared services, and consolidation and optimization were all part of the top ten priorities for state CIOs in 2013. Citrix enables New York State HCR to align with state CIO objectives and still provide constituent services in the most efficient way possible.