Mapping and alerting on global crises with Mapbox

Guy Walker
. 4 min read
When it comes to tracking risk events, an array of data exists. Much of this data is public, and is provided by government agencies such as NOAA, NASA and the USGS.
When it comes to tracking risk events, an array of data exists. Much of this data is public, and is provided by government agencies such as NOAA, NASA and the USGS. Meanwhile, some is provided by private companies and requires a subscription, such as Dataminr, The Risk Advisory Group and International SOS. Yet, all of this invaluable risk data has one thing in common: inaccessibility.
While risk data is essential for ensuring the safety of assets, personnel and business operations, it remains under-utilised by most organisations. Risk data is spread across dozens of websites and portals, contains overwhelming amounts of information, and comes in a variety of different formats.
It ultimately leaves too much work to organisations. Security teams are left having to extract relevant information from numerous sources, identify, locate and track risk events as they unfold, and have to notify those affected — often on a global scale. This slows organisations’ preparation, monitoring and responses to crisis events, leaving their operations vulnerable to disruption and their personnel and facilities at risk.
A map paints a thousand words
WatchKeeper seeks to address these problems. WatchKeeper’s new critical event management platform unifies risk data from dozens of sources, gathers organisation’s own asset and personnel locations, and maps it all in one real-time display.
At the heart of WatchKeeper’s platform is a map. WatchKeeper’s partnership with Mapbox has allowed us to create a customised dark steel map, allowing users to easily visualise real-time events and their asset locations on a global scale.
By unifying and mapping all of this real-time data, users are able to clearly see the precise location, scale, or direction of events, and crucially assess the threat they pose to their operations, facilities and personnel.
WatchKeeper built its platform with the core belief that when it comes to protecting employee life safety or the continuity of supply chains, having simple and accessible information is of paramount importance.
As such, WatchKeeper’s platform aims to be intuitive and accessible to all users. WatchKeeper utilises colours and concepts we are all familiar with. All crisis events, for instance, are marked on the map by polygons that are coloured depending on the severity of the event. Meanwhile, a live event feed within the platform operates much like a newsfeed on Facebook or Twitter, showing the newest events at the top as they unfold in real-time.
Filtering out the noise
WatchKeeper’s aim is to ensure that relevant information automatically and instantly gets to key decision-makers, security teams or those in danger. Using intelligent algorithms, WatchKeeper filters through millions of data points on possible high-impact events so that security teams don’t have to.
Using a customisable alerting system, organisations can establish their own alert rules based on the severity of an event, the proximity to their assets, or the type of event. For instance, an organisation could ensure their security team is automatically emailed every time a protest occurs within 20 miles of a facility.

“The crucial thing”, according to WatchKeeper CTO Daniel Whatmuff, “is that we filter out the noise and remove irrelevant, duplicate or insignificant events. It is why out of the millions of events our system analysed last month, only around 250,000 were mapped in the platform. Of these events, only a few hundred triggered email alerts to security teams thanks to the custom alerts our users can create. This means security teams can focus on what matters: safety and security surrounding events that could have a real impact.”
Beyond a cutting-edge alerting system, WatchKeeper has built numerous other features to afford organisations a greater level of safety and security. These include features such as a case management tool, that allows users to manage an event, a mass communication tool, so users can instantly message those at risk, as well as a dynamic briefing tool, so organisations can easily present to key stakeholders.
Safety for more organisations and people than ever before
By automating and mapping what used to be a slow, complex, and costly process, WatchKeeper sees itself as a cost-effective solution. Organisations no longer need to be a Fortune 500 company with a dedicated security and safety team to afford around-the-clock protection.
WatchKeeper believes their always-on automated platform will offer a greater level of security, to a greater number of organisations and people. Charitable organisations, medium-sized businesses and government agencies are just some of the many potential beneficiaries.
With organisations recovering from the deadliest hurricane and wildfire seasons ever, COVID-19, and a year of protest, WatchKeeper’s intuitive and automated platform is the ultimate end-to-end critical event management solution.

To find out more about WatchKeeper’s new critical event management platform and how it can help your organisation, please visit https://watchkeeper.com or email info@watchkeeper.com.
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