Australian Grand Prix Corporation (AGPC) drives ahead with collaborative partnership with Sekuro.
- As a state government body linked to globally recognised motor sports brands, the Australian Grand Prix Corporation’s (AGPC) biggest risk from a cyber security perspective is upholding and protecting its reputation.
- Finding a way of managing the technology that would suit the whole business in both scaled-up peak event periods, and during ‘business as usual’ – as well as befitting an IT team of one.
- A fruitful partnership earmarked by continuous improvement of security maturity through education and optimisation by Sekuro.
- Using its expertise, Sekuro assists with monitoring, triage, and remediation of AGPC’s technology stack, ensuring the smooth functioning of the whole IT operation.
“I have a great relationship with the team at Sekuro. There’s a real personal nature to the business — it’s not a hidden face, and I really appreciate that. It’s always been a really open, honest, and welcoming relationship,”
– Clint Watson, Division Manager of Technology at The Australian Grand Prix Corporation.
The Australian Grand Prix Corporation (AGPC) runs a unique operation, being a small business for most of the year before doubling its internal staff numbers — not to mention contractors — during its two key event periods: The Formula 1® Australian Grand Prix and the Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix.
Amidst this scaling up and down at various times, Clint Watson, Division Manager of Technology at the AGPC, is an IT team of just one — acting as the CIO, CISO, and CSO all rolled into one.
Being a business that centres around two key events annually, each of which go for less than one week, Watson had to justify the costs of high performing enterprise-grade technology to service both the whole business and to simplify his daily focuses.
Determined to have the technology that could facilitate the hosting of world-class events, Watson began building up his stack, engaging various vendors including Pure Storage, CrowdStrike and Rubrik. But these still needed monitoring and management.
From a cyber security perspective, Watson says “any type of cyber threat is the thing that keeps me up at night the most.” With its reputation on the line as a major global brand being delivered by a government body, AGPC needed the assurance of continuous monitoring, testing, and remediation, which was not possible coming from a team of one.
Australian Grand Prix Corporation (AGPC)
Since the mid-1990s, The Australian Grand Prix Corporation (AGPC) has been the government body responsible for the delivery of both the Formula 1® Australian Grand Prix and the Australian Motorcycle Grand Prix.
Clint Watson, Division Manager of Technology at the AGPC, has been an IT team of one during his eight years in the role. Needing to manage infrastructure, information security, and technology innovation alone, Watson partnered with Sekuro to have better intel and insight into the cyber security landscape and protect the hugely important reputational aspect of the AGPC.
Our Solution for AGPC
Watson partnered with Sekuro for vCISO, our virtual security services. This allows Sekuro to effectively act as his eyes and ears on the ground of the cyber security world, while he focuses on his core duties of infrastructure and technology stack management.
Rather than acting as a typical systems integrator or a pure cyber security provider, Sekuro instead delivers IT and cyber security together for AGPC, in what Watson refers to as “a true partnership that educates me, includes me, and brings me robust opinions and insights year-round.”
To round out the technology ecosystem, AGPC uses the following team of partners:
- Pure Storage for day-to-day storage management and performance
- Rubrik as a backup vendor — protecting from cyber threats but also from human error.
- CrowdStrike for end-point protection and vulnerability management
- Palo Alto firewalls for perimeter security.
“Sekuro understands the technology stack back to front, so that during the self-assessments they are able to understand gaps and how to remediate them,” says Watson. It’s been important to him that Sekuro accepts the technology stack he has created and works to make it best for AGPC’s needs. “In a world where it’s easy to sell another product, this means a lot to me,” he adds.
Watson notes that although he has a great set of tools, they’re only as good as those managing and monitoring them on an everyday basis. Being a team of one, he needs assistance to monitor, triage, and remediate. Sekuro fills this gap for him and acts as a true and integrated partner.
“At the business level, Sekuro has been a great help with the awareness of threats,” says Watson. “Being a government body, there are new standards, both physical and data security, that we need to adhere to all the time. Sekuro helped perform the self-assessments based on those standards, discovered the gaps we had, and built the remediation plans to fill those gaps. Sometimes it feels like I could not function without Sekuro’s help!”
Crucially, Sekuro implemented a position of continuous improvement of security maturity for AGPC, rather than a ‘set and forget’ approach. This ensures AGPC is not falling behind on any day-to-day progress and that they are aligned with new standards in an ongoing manner.
Watson is proud to say that AGPC is used as an example to other clients, with its high level of security maturity cited as best practice. Sekuro’s assessment of reports and implementation of appropriate remediation is credited as a core means of maintaining Watson’s high standards.
Sekuro’s virtual CISO Service (vCISO) acts as an extension of your security team. These services are carried out by skilled and certified security experts, who have direct access to our highly available and ISO 27001 compliant virtual security operation centre (vSOC).