Valvoline Inc. Replaces SEG with Autonomous AI to Stop Evolving Threats

Abnormal positions automotive services giant Valvoline to stay ahead of sophisticated attacks and accelerate its AI initiatives.
Valvoline Inc. Replaces SEG with Autonomous AI to Stop Evolving Threats

Valvoline Inc., a Fortune 1000 company, leads the industry with automotive service innovations that simplify preventive vehicle maintenance. After recently selling its products division, Valvoline's priority is increasing sales at its 1,900+ Instant Oil Change locations across North America. “Our growth focus requires us to modernize our technology and be data-driven,” said Corey Kaemming, Senior Director, Information Security. “From a security standpoint, we have to move fast to keep up with the changing attack tactics.”

The Valvoline Inc. Email Security Challenge

To protect company and customer data, Valvoline used a SEG in conjunction with Microsoft 365’s native security and an API-based solution. Despite using three solutions, email attacks still consistently reached inboxes. “There was a lot of spear phishing and impactful invoice fraud—everything from $5,000 to millions. We put a focus on cybersecurity awareness and training, but humans will always make mistakes,” Kaemming said.

It was clear that Valvoline needed a different cloud email security solution—one that could more effectively detect and stop malicious emails, deploy easily, and automate tasks so Kaemming’s team could spend less time on manual investigation and remediation.

“Attackers already use AI for greater impact, so you need solutions that improve as attacks evolve. Abnormal’s been ahead of the behavioral AI game, and as attacks become more refined, Abnormal will be there to help us.”
—Waldon Smith, CSIRT Manager

The Abnormal Security Solution

As a prior customer, Kaemming had first-hand experience with how Abnormal's AI products are highly effective at stopping the full spectrum of email attacks and was confident that Abnormal would be the right solution for Valvoline. The Proof of Value quickly delivered impressive results. “After Abnormal trained on our environment, I saw how high fidelity the alerts were, compared to the other solutions and our own digging,” said Waldon Smith, CSIRT Manager. Abnormal’s ability to detect malicious QR codes also stood out. “We first implemented Abnormal when QR code attacks were steadily increasing, and Abnormal was on top of it. Our other solution was noticeably behind Abnormal in catching attempted QR code attacks.”

Why Valvoline Inc. Chose Abnormal

Abnormal’s AI-native detection and automation capabilities have enabled the security team to reallocate their time to other tasks. “The total cost of ownership for our SEG and the other API-based solution was very high because they weren’t set-it-and-forget-it tools. We'd had four to five analysts spending 90% of each day on email-related tasks; Abnormal allowed us to get away from that manual work,” Kaemming said. The company has since removed its SEG.

Additionally, with AI Security Mailbox, users receive quick, personalized replies to their report submissions, improving threat awareness and encouraging ongoing reporting. The Abnormal dashboard also allows the team to identify attack trends, and Abnormal’s seamless integration with other tools like Valvoline’s SIEM supports cross-platform data utilization.

“People want to do their jobs without having to worry about being compromised, and Abnormal’s behavioral AI stops attacks from reaching our people. My eggs are all in the Abnormal basket. My trust in them is huge.”
—Corey Kaemming, Senior Director, Information Security

Accelerating Growth and Security

Kaemming is confident about Valvoline’s long-term security posture because he knows Abnormal was designed to evolve with the threat landscape. “When I look at Abnormal, I’m impressed by how long they've been using AI and machine learning and by their record of continuous positive change.” Perhaps most importantly, Valvoline employees and VIPs can trust that their inboxes are protected from email threats. “Our goals are to get away from being so reliant on human judgment and leverage AI to be proactive. Abnormal helps us with those goals,” said Kaemming.

  • Industry: Retail
  • Location: Lexington, KY, USA
  • Protected Mailboxes: 9,100+


Saved by stopping a recurring invoice fraud attack.


Analyst hours saved per month on email and solution management.


SEG and API-solution replaced by Abnormal enabling consolidation.

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