Splunk and Public Safety

Public safety is a major responsibility of state, municipal and local government throughout the nation. Typically, four major areas are included in public safety: law enforcement, emergency medical services, fire/hazmat and emergency communications and operations. All of these areas are heavily impacted today by strong elements of change — threat, vulnerability and risk; governance; public expectations; technology; and various aspects of the “business” of public safety. Public safety organizations face a significant set of challenges, that Splunk the Data-to-Everything Platform can help meet, regardless of size or location or circumstances.

This includes:

  • Effectiveness and resilience when called upon under emergency conditions.
  • Efficient operations under routine conditions.
  • Addressing a wide and unpredictable range of threat, vulnerability and risk elements.
  • A clear demonstration of responsible investment of taxpayer and ratepayer resources.
  • Steadily raising quality while adapting and leaning into future capabilities and needs.

There are many different ways Splunk will help public safety organizations meet a variety of key challenges — like wildfire anticipation and response; managing unpredictable, complex, multi-domain operations; helping medical and social services organizations grapple with the opioid epidemic; understanding and managing different areas of risk where large uncertainties are involved; collaborating with partner organizations like information technology, National Guard and Homeland Security, education, and other state and local activities. These challenges are only expanding throughout the nation, as threats and vulnerabilities and risk continue to shift; budgets and investments remain limited; and technology, economic and social change remains the norm. And as demonstrated throughout Splunk’s commercial and public sector customers and use cases, Splunk platform and services capabilities are extremely adaptive and flexible, and generate clear and real return on investments, everywhere Splunk is used. 

Splunk is also key to enabling the support of various public safety foundational and supporting activities, such as emergency communications, situational awareness, operations command & control, and training and education. The Splunk platform is increasingly organized around an operational perspective central to Public Safety — situational awareness, investigations, playbooks, orchestration, rapid response, etc. — all supporting Public Safety operational leadership. Splunk understands the complex and unpredictable character of public safety risk management challenges and can help prepare, adapt and flex against them. The strong platform, capabilities and experience of Splunk can help public safety organizations adapt and succeed in a data-driven world, and help turn data into action against the diverse challenges they face. There are three pillars to meeting this challenge: the Splunk platform and capabilities, our leveraging of quality partners known to Splunk and customers, and the vision and intent of public safety leadership throughout the nation’s states, cities and counties.

Public safety agencies protect their communities — from wildfires and extreme weather events to terrorism and cybercrimes. Whether emergency management services, law enforcement agencies, fire departments or rescue squads, these organizations need real-time information, must coordinate, and share information and intelligence across disparate technological infrastructures and siloed functions. Agencies must provide these citizen services while also dealing with increased demand for transparency, accountability and controlling costs.

The Splunk platform offers public safety organizations real-time insights by collecting, correlating and enriching machine data to ensure mission success. Splunk helps agencies cut across silos of operations and bring all relevant information in one place to offer holistic visibility to solve a variety of challenges across security, IT operations and public safety programs. With the Splunk platform, public safety agencies can easily make sense of large volumes of data, from any source regardless of format, type, rate or volume, to gain real-time, enterprise-wide visibility, to make fast and confident decisions, and securely share intelligence across agencies enhancing collaboration, trust and program success.

IT Operations

Improve public safety and system uptime with end-to-end visibility across agencies, systems, and infrastructure components such as servers, storage, network and security devices, applications and databases as well as physical infrastructure like surveillance cameras, sensors and wearable devices. Quickly pinpoint root cause of issues, manage incidents faster and reduce resolution times to contain adverse agency impact with an integrated view across legacy, homegrown and commercial applications and systems. Proactively monitor distributed and cloud infrastructures, ensure optimal performance, and confidently undertake modernization initiatives with granular, real-time insights.

Security and Compliance

Leverage analytics-driven security for unprecedented insights across the enterprise to quickly detect cyberattacks and insider threats, handle incident response and ad hoc investigations faster and identify anomalous behavior. Ensure compliance with internal policies and criminal justice information services (CJIS) with granular role-based access control. Use machine data, like access logs, to ensure only authorized personnel use private data for approved purposes.

Law Enforcement

Effectively conduct investigations and allocate resources with complete and timely analyses of data from all relevant sources — criminal records, incident reports, 911 calls, security video, cell phones and more. Leverage powerful correlations and visualizations to make sense of data in vast disparate stores to solve crimes and more effectively deploy resources. Engage predictive and intelligence-led policing initiatives faster and more affordably than with traditional tools.

Fusion Centers

Eliminate technological hurdles to information sharing with fusion centers. Access data securely on a need-to-know-and-share basis from multiple sources and overcome data siloes impeding investigations. Leverage centralized visualizations and powerful dashboards to quickly drill into details without losing investigation context. Quickly connect the dots, identify hidden patterns and discover trends to proactively detect and combat crimes and other community threats.

Courts and Justice

Correlate and enrich relevant data across disparate systems to better understand trends and patterns to eliminate system bottlenecks and accelerate cases with unprecedented insights improving the judicial system’s agility, efficiencies and overall reputation. Leverage packaged and customizable dashboards to track metrics and KPIs that correlate crimes with demographics, socioeconomic factors and other attributes for informed and effective policymaking and penal decisions.

Emergency Management and Disaster Relief

In the chaos of emergency settings take advantage of situational awareness, enhance preparedness and response capabilities by harnessing and correlating data from all relevant sources, including social and cross-agency feeds, into easy to understand, actionable visuals. Prioritize and allocate resources as conditions change by pinpointing vulnerabilities and as situations demand. Respond to disasters and emergencies more effectively and faster with predictive and real-time data analytics.

New and Emerging Capabilities

Splunk is developing new capabilities that have strong application to public safety challenges as part of continuous development, improvement and innovation. These include areas such as using Splunk Enterprise as an investigation support platform for increasingly complex investigations challenges; leveraging Splunk platform capabilities against key incident response, investigation and forensics needs; providing public safety organizations with effective public engagement tools and platform elements; helping all kinds of public safety organizations better leverage “connected devices” throughout their operating environment; providing advanced analytics and machine learning insights to public safety challenges; cryptocurrency analytics training and capabilities to help Public Safety investigation organizations dig into increasing criminal organization use of these emerging technologies; and development of “Smart Cities and Communities” Public Safety capabilities.

Public Safety Customer Examples

Learn how a number of public safety organizations are using Splunk to protect, deliver and innovate services in their communities. These include the Los Angeles Police Department, Sacramento Sheriff’s Department, Fire Department of New York City (FDNY), the United States Capitol Police, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the Commonwealth of Virginia, and a California county leveraging the Splunk platform for a successful murder investigation in their jurisdiction. Through the three elements of the Splunk platform, Splunk and Splunk-certified engineers and a range of quality Splunk partner organizations: Thousands of public and private sector enterprises rely on Splunk products to improve security, increase efficiencies, make data-driven decisions and gain tactical and strategic advantages. And this is done through a quality blending of the Splunk platform, various tools and apps and software connections, and rapid tailoring, engineering and deployment against key customer challenges and requirements.

Scott Tousley

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