FC Barcelona & Fortinet: Cybersecurity Takes Centre Stage

Fortinet is deploying its Security Fabric platform as part of a partnership with FC Barcelona, aimed at providing cutting-edge cybersecurity

The world of sports is rapidly evolving with new technologies transforming the fan experience and operations behind the scenes. From high-speed WiFi enabling fans to share experiences in real-time to data analytics tracking player performance, digital innovations are enhancing countless parts of the sporting world. However, this increasing reliance on technology and connectivity also brings significant cybersecurity risks.

Major sports organisations are now prime targets for cyber attacks that could disrupt operations, expose sensitive data and damage reputations and revenues. A single breach could shut down stadium systems, disable online ticket sales, compromise customer data, or unleash ransomware demands. The risks underscore why robust cybersecurity must be a top priority as the sports industry embraces digital transformation.

Leading this charge is Fortinet, a global cybersecurity leader partnering with legendary football club FC Barcelona. Fortinet has been selected as the Official Cybersecurity Partner for FC Barcelona's ambitious Espai Barça project, which includes a renovation of its iconic Camp Nou stadium into an international innovation hub over the next few years.

“Building on Fortinet’s history of cybersecurity innovation spanning more than 20 years, we’re proud to support FC Barcelona’s ambitious vision to create an international innovation hub powered by industry-leading, cutting-edge technologies,” comments John Maddison, Chief Marketing Officer of Fortinet. “Our shared goal of developing Spotify Camp Nou into one of the world’s leading stadiums is made possible by leveraging the Fortinet Security Fabric platform to secure its digital environment.”

Fortinet and FC Barcelona: Cybersecurity enhances visitor and user experience

As part of this multi-year agreement through 2028, Fortinet will implement its advanced Security Fabric platform to secure the Spotify Camp Nou's digital environment end-to-end – from the stadium WiFi and operational technology to data centres. This includes next-generation firewalls, zero-trust access, endpoint security and centralised management with AI-powered analytics to protect users, devices, applications and data.

AI has served as the backbone of the Fortinet Security Fabric and FortiGuard Labs threat intelligence and security services for more than a decade, and the company recently announced the implementation of Fortinet Advisor, a generative AI (GenAI) assistant, to its portfolio of more than 40 AI-powered offerings to help upskill cybersecurity teams.

The partnership highlights how major sports venues are being redesigned as smart, connected environments where cybersecurity is critical for safeguarding digital fan experiences and back-end operations, and underscores the cybersecurity imperative facing all teams, leagues and organisations as they integrate the latest innovations to thrill fans and optimise performance.

As FC Barcelona President Juli Guiu states: “Espai Barça must be the catalyst for the club's digital transformation, and cybersecurity is a fundamental pillar. Our alliance with Fortinet ensures that our facilities will have the most advanced protection and a secure digital environment for all those who visit the stadium. This collaboration highlights our commitment to innovation and technology and the club's commitment to offer the best experience.”

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