The Big Game comes once a year, marking the most popular sporting event in the United States. In addition to the game itself, which took place at Hard Rock Stadium, the NFL organized multiple days of events at different locations in the greater Miami area.  On the surface, this meant football fans had numerous options to interact with players and create unforgettable experiences. Behind the scenes, this meant the NFL security team was working nonstop to protect NFL hotels, venues, League Staff, and the fans.

The Big Game and Related Events on One Screen
The NFL security team leveraged TopoONETM software to monitor the Big Game and all the related events for potential threats. They simply added the locations of all the NFL-sponsored events and receptions to TopoONE by using a configured data layer. This included daily views, so analysts could focus on just the events/locations relevant on that day; they could also toggle to a view that included all events with a mouse click.

Social Media by Location
One key source of threat intelligence is social media; where posts and comments related to the Big Game increased exponentially as the day approached. Fan loyalty can produce passionate online discussions, but it can also result in disparaging and sometimes threatening statements. TopoONE empowered the NFL security team to visualize geolocated social media comments in proximity to each event.

Same-day Traffic Camera Integration
Like many major metropolitan areas, the greater Miami area is crisscrossed with a network of Interstate and state highways, major thoroughfares and residential streets. Crowded fan events and rush hour commutes can have a profound impact on traffic patterns, which can in turn disrupt event logistics such as timing and transportation. The resulting challenges can be especially pronounced for busy executives and players with multiple obligations on a given day.

To aid in mitigation, the security team asked whether local traffic camera feeds could be integrated into TopoONE to assess traffic patterns and transportation routes. The team at Topo.ai delivered this valuable information the same day.

Additional Capabilities Based on Evolving Needs
Rob Gummer, Director of Intelligence Operations, plans to continue building the NFL intelligence program by adding new information feeds for a more comprehensive view of potential threats.

“We operate in an increasingly complex threat environment in which physical and cyber malicious actors are intertwined. Agility is the key to a GSOC’s success in this space, as we need to be able to pivot when the threat does.  Topo.ai gives me the ability to do just that. Add capabilities based on my mission need, and quickly modify those needs when the landscape changes.  I have been impressed by the Topo.ai team, especially their responsiveness and the customization that TopoONE software supports,” said Gummer.

Topo.ai is sponsoring a benchmarking workshop at the NFL GSOC at the end of February so other security leaders can see the NFL’s data-driven approach to enterprise security.

To learn more about how the NFL leverages Topo.ai, please contact us.