Seattle-based Network security specialist WatchGuard Technologies has signed up Richmond Football Club in Victoria, which has rolled out the firm’s Total Security Suite at its head office.
Watchguard Technologies said professional football clubs were increasingly technology-driven with player data, sports analytics and video used to help the playing roster to improve their on-field performance.
“Clubs try to hold that data tightly to maintain the competitive advantage of such programs. But an inability to establish a secure VPN connection into the corporate network from a remote location – like a training ground, stadium, house or a hotel when the team was interstate for an ‘away’ game – meant it had become standard practice for Richmond’s staff to run off portable hard drives and their own individual machines,” it said.
“We didn’t have the ability to access the data away from the club – you had to be working off hard drives or transferring the files over to a local desktop to view them,” explained Simon Reinsch, IT Manager, Richmond Football Club. “We wanted to lock that down and not just have everyone taking things off site and using it accordingly.”
The club has deployed WatchGuard Total Security Suite running on two WatchGuard M370 firewalls in a high availability configuration at its head office in Richmond.
The M370s were configured offsite and then installed and put into production over a weekend. As the previous firewalls had been in place a long time, the policies implemented through them were not well-documented. Other policy configurations were sourced from the sport’s governing body, the AFL, and ticket booking agency Ticketmaster.
Like many codes, the AFL offers clubs centrally-managed shared services for functions like finance, membership and events. The M370 is also used to set access policies for the club’s newly-upgraded wi-fi network. What was once a single SSID for the entire club has been split into four SSIDs – one for corporate, players, guest access and an on-site Indigenous school.