Case Study

AAA Western and Central New York Optimizes Roadside Assistance, Delivers Physical and Network Security

Executive Summary

AAA Western and Central New York (AAA WCNY) is part of a federation of not for profit motor clubs throughout North America. AAA WCNY is the largest member services organization in upstate New York and provides its nearly 840,000 members with around-the-clock automotive services, roadside assistance, travel agency, auto, home, life insurance, and financial services through 17 operating locations and online.  AAA WCNY needed a technology solution to deliver operational improvements and trustworthy security intelligence while reducing operational complexity. Since deploying Splunk Cloud, AAA WCNY has seen benefits including:

  • Superior customer service
  • Improved network security
  • Greater physical security across its facilities
    • Needed to ensure continued superior customer experience
    • Required to comply with PCI mandates
    • Wanted greater visibility into network security, particularly firewall traffic
Business Impact
    • Ability to deliver superior customer service through real-time monitoring and proactive routing of calls
    • Full operational visibility of network security
    • Enhanced PCI compliance
    • Greater physical security across its facilities
    • More efficient building management and energy usage
Data Sources
    • Cisco UC Call Manager & Cisco Voice Gateways
    • Perimeter firewalls
    • VPN services
    • Cisco routers, switches and access point backups
    • Microsoft Active Directory
    • Workstations, desktops and laptops
    • Badge swipe system

Why Splunk

The primary mission of the organization is to deliver superior customer experience through all service channels. Additionally, AAA WCNY safeguards its members’ personal and financial information with strict compliance to Payment Card Industry (PCI) mandates.  Given the agile nature of the business, the deployed technology meeting these goals must be implemented rapidly and efficiently.

“We’re committed to spending our time serving our members rather than operating and maintaining infrastructure,” says Frank D’Arrigo, director of technology, AAA WCNY. “For us, Splunk Cloud has been a perfect fit because we get the value without having to worry about the infrastructure. Splunk Cloud’s 100 percent Uptime SLA is critical to us.  Our members expect us to be available 100 percent of the time, and I know that I can depend on Splunk Cloud to be there too.”  

Seamless roadside assistance drives customer satisfaction

Ensuring that members calling for roadside assistance are promptly connected to an operator is a key tenet of the superior customer experience AAA WCNY provides.  To help deliver this level of customer service, AAA WCNY integrates Splunk Cloud with its call management system, Cisco UC Call Manager, for real-time monitoring and potential dynamic routing of inbound telephone calls. When circuit utilization is high, network administrators can proactively reroute outbound calls, freeing up capacity for inbound road service request calls. “Our first priority is making sure our members receive the best service quickly when they call for help,” says D’Arrigo. 

“Splunk Cloud’s 100 percent Uptime SLA is critical to us.  Our members expect us to be available 100 percent of the time, and I know that I can depend on Splunk Cloud to be there too.”  

Frank D’Arrigo, Director of Technology, AAA Western and Central New York

Expanding use cases bring “unexpected value”

AAA WCNY soon learned that the Splunk platform could help secure the perimeters of its buildings as well as its network. Administrators integrated Splunk Cloud with its badge swiping system, enabling them to track everyone entering its many distributed facilities. With data from security video systems, Splunk Cloud alerts administrators of detected motion within buildings during off-hours, providing additional views of suspicious activities.

Using data-driven intelligence from Splunk Cloud, AAA WCNY now operates lighting, heating and air conditioning systems more efficiently by ensuring these services are minimized during off-hours, except when legitimate personnel are onsite.  For example, a faulty lighting system was turning the lights in a computer room on and off at night. A Splunk dashboard enabled administrators to identify and correct the problem, and reduce energy consumption.

“Prior to deploying Splunk Cloud, we not only lacked such visibility, we weren’t even thinking about it,” says D’Arrigo. “Now we have better awareness and we receive alerts whenever something anomalous happens. The end result is significantly enhanced physical security—and as an added benefit, we have improved our energy usage. Splunk Cloud opened our eyes to the tremendous value we can extract from our data, and we are thrilled that every new use case brings significant unexpected value.” 

Journey into the future

AAA WCNY intends to expand its use of Splunk Cloud.  Administrators plan to index e-commerce logs and data from its ERP and other systems to gain business insights and improve application performance.  They also envision using the Splunk platform for capacity planning. D’Arrigo concludes, “Splunk Cloud has transformed how we work. We’re building a long-term strategy with our Splunk platform because the possibilities for gaining insight from our data are endless.”