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Rodrigue Zbinden, CEO at Morphean, discusses the business benefits from merging video surveillance and access control technologies as demand for ACaaS grows. The big question facing businesses today is how they will use the data that they possess to unlock new forms of value using emerging technologies such as the cloud, predictive analytics and artificial intelligence. Some data is better utilised than others: financial services were quick to recognise the competitive advantages in exploiting technology to improve customer service, detect fraud and improve risk assessment. In the world of physical security, however, we’re only just beginning to understand the potential of the data that our systems gather as a part of their core function. Benefits of ‘Integrated access control’ The first thing to look for is how multiple sources of data can be used to improve physical security functionsWhat many businesses have yet to realise is that many emerging technologies come into their own when used across multiple sources of data. In physical security, for example, we’re moving from discussions about access control and CCTV as siloed functions, to platforms that combine information for analysis from any source, and applying machine learning algorithms to deliver intelligent insights back to the business. ‘Integrated access control’ then looks not just to images or building management, but to images, building management, HR databases and calendar information, all at the same time. And some of the benefits are only now starting to become clear. The first thing to look for, of course, is how multiple sources of data can be used to improve physical security functions. For example, by combining traditional access control data, such as when a swipe card is used, with a video processing platform capable of facial recognition, a second factor of authentication is provided without the need to install separate biometric sensors. CCTV cameras are already deployed in most sensitive areas, so if a card doesn’t match the user based on HR records, staff can be quickly alerted. Making the tools cost-effective In a similar vein, if an access card is used by an employee, who is supposed to be on holiday according to the HR record, then video data can be used to ensure the individual’s identity and that the card has not been stolen – all before a human operator becomes involved. This is driving growth in ‘access control as a service’ (ACaaS), and the end-to-end digitalisation of a vital business functionThese capabilities are not new. What is, however, is the way in which cloud-based computing platforms for security analytics, which absorb information from IP-connected cameras, make the tools much more cost effective, accessible and easier to manage than traditional on-site server applications. In turn, this is driving growth in ‘access control as a service’ (ACaaS), and the end-to-end digitalisation of a vital business function. With this system set up, only access control hardware systems are deployed on premise while the software and access control data are shifted to a remote location and provided as a service to users on a recurring monthly subscription. The benefits of such an arrangement are numerous but include avoiding large capital investments, greater flexibility to scale up and down, and shifting the onus of cybersecurity and firmware updates to the vendor. Simple installation and removal of endpoints What’s more, because modern video and access control systems transmit data via the IP network, installation and removal of endpoints are simple, requiring nothing more than PoE and Wi-Fi. Of all the advantages of the ‘as a service’ model, it’s the rich data acquired from ACaaS that makes it so valuable, and capable of delivering business benefits beyond physical security. Managers are constantly looking for better quality of information to inform decision making, and integrated access control systems know more about operations than you might think. Integrating lighting systems with video feeds and access control creates the ability to control the lightsRight now, many firms are experimenting with ways to find efficiencies and reduce costs. For example, lights that automatically turn off to save energy are common in offices today, but can be a distraction if employees have to constantly move around to trigger motion detectors. Integrating lighting systems with video feeds and access control creates the ability to control the lights depending on exactly who is in the room and where they are sitting. Tracking the movement of employees Camera data has been used in retail to track the movement of customers in stores, helping managers to optimise displays and position stocks. The same technology can be used to map out how employees move around a workspace, finding out where productivity gains can be made by moving furniture around or how many desks should be provisioned. Other potential uses of the same data could be to look for correlations between staff movement – say to a store room – and sales spikes, to better predict stock ordering. What makes ACaaS truly exciting is it is still a very new field, and we’re only just scratching the surface of the number of ways that it can be used to create new sources of value. As smart buildings and smart city technology evolves, more and more open systems will become available, offering more ways to combine, analyse and draw insights from data. Within a few years, it will become the rule, rather than the exception, and only grow in utility as it does.
Today’s security industry technology standards create a common framework for achieving predictable performance. Systems are made more secure and easier to install, use and integrate with other devices. Standards are also intended to be living documents, open to continual refinements to benefit manufacturers, integrators and end users. An excellent example is the Open Supervised Data Protocol (OSDP), which is now the industry’s gold standard for physical access control installations. It was designed to offer a higher level of security with more flexible options than the aging defacto Weigand wiring standard. Updating OSDP-readers simultaneously One recent addition enables end users to push firmware and software updates to thousands of OSDP-enabled card readers simultaneouslyOSDP, first introduced in 2011 by the Security Industry Association (SIA), continues to evolve with significant manufacturer input. One recent addition enables end users to push firmware and/or software updates to a few or thousands of OSDP-enabled card readers simultaneously. Weigand technology requires updates to be made one at a time at each reader. Regularly changing reader encryption keys is an excellent way to enhance facility security. It’s easy using the OSDP file transfer capability and the latest DESFire EV2 credentials containing multiple encryption keys. You can transfer the next code on the card to all readers and the job is done. And there’s no need to create a new card for each user or reprogram each individual reader. AES-128 encryption ensures cybersecurity It’s time to migrate entirely away from Weigand technology. If greater security, convenience and reduced labour from the latest OSDP updates isn’t reason enough, here are a few more things to consider. The 40-year-old Weigand protocol provides no signal encryption, making it easy for hackers to capture the raw data transmitted between cards and readers. OSDP readers support AES-128 encryption while providing continuous monitoring of wires to guard against cybercriminals. Weigand reader installations require homerun cable pulls from the control panel to each peripheral device. OSDP readers can be daisy chained, providing additional savings on cabling and installation time. Weigand technology is simply too slow to work with today’s most versatile and secure card technologies. OSDP readers work with virtually all modern access control cards. The OSDP standard also works with biometric devices; Weigand does not. Meeting requirements of FICAM guidelines SIA is pushing to make the latest OSDP version a standard recognised by the ANSI, a move to enhance the global competitiveness of U.S. security businessesAlso, OSDP is becoming a must-have standard for organisations demanding the highest security levels. The standard meets requirements of the Federal Identity, Credential and Access Management (FICAM) guidelines that affect how the access control industry does business with the federal government. SIA is pushing to make the latest OSDP version a standard recognised by the American National Standard Institute (ANSI), a move to enhance the global competitiveness of U.S. security businesses. There’s still a large worldwide reader installation base that works solely with the Weigand protocol. Admittedly, changing them all at one time may be prohibitively expensive; however, standards should be viewed as a journey, not a destination. That’s why a measured migration is the right choice for many organisations. Begin by securing the perimeter. Replace only the outside-facing Weigand readers. As long as the walls are secured, the inside can remain a softer target until OSDP-compatible readers can be added indoors. The case for moving to OSDP as a standard is compelling. It offers our industry the opportunity to design access control software and products that provide what end users want most – greater security, flexibility and convenience.
It’s not surprising that people are nervous about the security of newer technologies, many of which are part of the Internet of Things (IoT). While they offer greater efficiency and connectivity, some people still hesitate. After all, there seems to be a constant stream of news stories about multinational corporations being breached or hackers taking control of smart home devices. Both of these scenarios can feel personal. No one likes the idea of their data falling into criminal hands. And we especially don’t like the thought that someone can, even virtually, come into our private spaces. The reality, though, is that, when you choose the right technology and undertake the proper procedures, IoT devices are incredibly secure. That said, one of the spaces where we see continued confusion is around access control systems (ACS) that are deployed over networks, particularly in relation to mobile access, smartcards, and electronic locks. These technologies are often perceived as being less secure and therefore more vulnerable to attacks than older ACS systems or devices. In the interest of clearing up any confusion, it is important to provide good, reliable information. With this in mind, there are some myths out there about the security of ACS that need to be debunked. The fact that these devices communicate with an ACS via Bluetooth or Near Field Communication (NFC) leads to one of the main myths we encounter Myth #1: Mobile credentials are not secure The first myth we have to look at exists around mobile credentials. Mobile credentials allow cardholders to access secured doors and areas with their mobile devices. The fact that these devices communicate with an ACS via Bluetooth or Near Field Communication (NFC) leads to one of the main myths we encounter about the security of credentialed information. There is a persistent belief that Bluetooth is not secure. In particular, people seem to be concerned that using mobile credentials makes your organisation more vulnerable to skimming attacks. While focusing on the medium of communication is an important consideration when an organisation deploys a mobile credentialing system, the concerns about Bluetooth miss the mark. Bluetooth and NFC are simply channels over which information is transmitted. Believing that Bluetooth is not secure would be the same as suggesting that the internet is not secure. In both cases, the security of your communication depends on the technology, protocols, and safeguards we all have in place. So, instead of wondering about Bluetooth or NFC, users should be focused on the security of the devices themselves. Before deploying mobile credentials, ask your vendor (1) how the credential is generated, stored, and secured on the device, (2) how the device communicates with the reader, and (3) how the reader securely accesses the credential information. When you deploy smartcard technology as part of your ACS, you should choose the latest generation, such as MiFARE DesFIRE EV1 or EV2 and HID iCLASS SEOS Myth #2: All smartcards are equally secure The question “how secure are my smartcards?” is a serious one. And the answer can depend on the generation of the cards themselves. For example, while older smartcards like MiFARE CLASSIC and HID iCLASS Classic offer better encryption than proxy cards and magstripe credentials, they have been compromised. Using these older technologies can make your organisation vulnerable. As a result, when you deploy smartcard technology as part of your ACS, you should choose the latest generation, such as MiFARE DesFIRE EV1 or EV2 and HID iCLASS SEOS. In this way, you will be protecting your system as well as your buildings or facilities. Some traditional readers and controllers can also pose a serious risk to your organisation if they use the Wiegand protocol, which offers no security. While you can upgrade to a more secure protocol like OSDP version 2, electronic locks are a very secure alternative worth considering. It is also important to understand that not all smartcard readers are compatible with all smartcard types. When they are not compatible, the built-in security designed to keep your system safe will not match up and you will essentially forego security as your smartcard-reader will not read the credentials at all. Instead, it will simply read the non-secure portion—the Card Serial Number (CSN) —of the smartcard that is accessible to everyone. While some manufacturers suggest that this is an advantage because their readers can work with any smartcard, the truth is that they are not reading from the secure part of the card, which can put your system and premises at risk. Using electronic locks can help protect facilities and networks through various security protocols, including encryption and authentication Myth #3: Electronic locks are more vulnerable These days, there are still many who believe that electronic locks, especially wireless locks, are more vulnerable to cybercriminal activity as compared to traditional readers and controllers. The concern here is that electronic locks can allow cybercriminals to both access your network to get data and intercept commands from the gateway or nodes over the air that would allow them access to your buildings or facilities. The reality is that using electronic locks can help protect facilities and networks through various security protocols, including encryption and authentication. Additionally, because many of these locks remain operational regardless of network status, they provide real-time door monitoring. This means that many electronic locks not only prevent unauthorised access but also keep operators informed about their status at all times, even if a network goes down. Outdated technology and old analogue systems are more vulnerable to attacks When it comes to deploying electronic locks, it is important to remember that, like any device on your network, they must have built-in security features that will allow you to keep your information, people, and facilities safe. Be prepared to unlock future benefits Ultimately, the information in your IP-based ACS is at no greater risk than any other information being transmitted over the network. We just have to be smart about how we connect, transmit, and store our data. In the end, maintaining the status quo and refusing to move away from old technology is not a viable option. Outdated technology and old analogue systems are more vulnerable to attacks. The reason it is so important to debunk myths around ACS and, at the same time, get people thinking about network security in the right way is that network-based systems can offer an ever-increasing number of benefits. When we deploy new technology using industry best practices and purchase devices from trusted vendors, we put ourselves and our networks in the best possible position to take full advantage of all that our increasingly connected world has to offer.
At IFSEC International 2019, Hikvision, the global supplier of innovative video surveillance products and solutions, will help launch the pioneering Secure by Default initiative, and unveil a host of its new product and technology developments. Secure by Default is a set of minimum requirements which for the first time will provide a guarantee for users that network video security products are as secure as possible in their default settings out of the box. Secure by Default will be launched by UK Surveillance Camera Commissioner Tony Porter as part of the first National Surveillance Camera day, the launch of which takes place on Thursday June 20 from 10am to 10:45am at the IFSEC Key Note arena. Porter’s address is followed immediately by a Hikvision interview panel further discussing Secure by Default and featuring Tony Porter, Detective Constable Patrick McBrearty, who is the Cyber Protect Officer within the Regional Organised Crime Unit for the West Midlands, Norbain’s Jeremy Hockham, and Hikvision’s Gary Harmer. Products and technology developments During IFSEC International 2019, Hikvision will be showcasing a host of its latest products and technology developments, including its: HikCentral Solution Deep Learning Series Panoramic Series Turbo HD Series Pro Series & Ultra Series PTZ Series Access Control & Intercom Series Smart Retail Solution Smart City Solution Smart Utilities Solution DarkFighterX Technology Technology Partner Program Portal Hikvision will also introduce its new Technology Partner Program Portal at the show. The TPP Portal is designed to bring together technology partners and systems integrators, in order to accelerate projects, enhance collaboration and drive the development of more innovative customer solutions. It will provide partner listings, easy engagement with Hikvision’s integration department, comprehensive technical documentation, management of Hikvision Embedded Open Program (HEOP) including license management, and regular updates and increased functionality. Pyronix will be launching a new addition to their all-round perimeter protection solution Intruder alarm specialist Pyronix, part of the Hikvision group of companies, will be present on the Hikvision stand during IFSEC International. Pyronix will be launching a new addition to their all-round perimeter protection solution, adding even greater functionality for additional peace of mind and greater upsell and retention advantages for installers. Hikvision partners on the stand Other Hikvision Technology Partners will also be present on the Hikvision stand, including: Manything Pro will be showcasing their offsite cloud video storage platform and showing how easy it is to add cloud to Hikvision camera installations. Manything Pro cloud storage plans start from £3.19/month, allowing installers and integrators to add margin and introduce a new recurring revenue stream to their businesses. IPS Intelligent Video Analytics will show five camera-based analytics modules for the HEOP. They enable indoor and outdoor real-time detection of motion, intrusion, sabotage and loitering. Seagate will be showcasing Seagate SkyHawk Health Management, with embedded drive monitoring software designed for prevention, intervention, and recovery. Now integrated with Hikvision NVR Plus receive notification alerts from the SkyHawk HDD directly to the Hik-Connect app. Visit Hikvision during IFSEC International 2019 at Stand IF1530. Stop by the stand for 15 minutes daily talks on hot industry topics: 12.00: Dive Into Deep Learning 13.00: HikCentral MasterClass 14:00: Pyronix Powering Business Growth
Exhibiting alongside their parent company Hikvision for the third time, Pyronix will be hosting new and existing customers at IFSEC International, UK and Europe’s leading security event and one of the biggest exhibitions in the security industry. Since IFSEC 2018, they have been listening to customer feedback; refining their product portfolio by developing advanced features and exciting new updates. Securing perimeter with XD detectors Securing a property’s perimeter can be one of the most effective ways to prevent intrusion. Pyronix has now taken that one step further. Pyronix will be demonstrating how to set up a secure perimeter with XD detectors, indoor and outdoor Wi-Fi camerasOn their stand, they’ll be demonstrating how to set up a secure perimeter with their XD detectors, indoor and outdoor Wi-Fi cameras, security control panels and the updated ProControl+ app; all soon to be made even more flexible! This year they’ll also be showcasing something very exciting at the show; adding even greater functionality to their all-rounded perimeter protection solution, for additional peace of mind and greater upsell and retention advantages for their installers. Bolstering the business of installers “We’re really excited to be showcasing their latest technology at IFSEC 2019,” Pyronix Marketing Manager, Laurence Kenny, said. He continued: “Our focus this year has been about developing a product and service offering that our installers can use to bolster their business growth. Our complete perimeter protection solution and video integration adds new dimensions and service offerings to the market, so we’re thrilled to be showing these new features at IFSEC.” To find out more about the launch and see their perimeter protection solutions in action, visit Pyronix on Stand IF1530.
The Enforcer on Tour is back and this time with its flexible perimeter protection that speaks for itself, delivering voice push notifications and Full-HD video verification. The company’s dedicated Account Managers will be hosting open days at various distributors across the UK throughout May and June, showcasing the full capabilities of the Enforcer system and how Pyronix perimeter protection can deliver a plethora of business growth opportunities. “Following on from last year’s tour, we’re really excited to bring the Enforcer on Tour back in 2019 across the UK, with all new offerings and features, including Full-HD video verification,” Laurence Kenny, Pyronix Marketing Manager, said. Voice notifications for intruder warning By adding the XDL12TT-WE, the system can now be configured to deliver voice push notifications for early warning of intrusionWith Account Managers on-hand at selected distributor outlets across the UK, professional security installers have the opportunity to see the multi-award-winning ‘installer’s choice’ Enforcer system for themselves and how their XDL12TT-WE wireless outdoor detector, sensors, contacts, Wi-Fi cameras and ProControl+ app can diversify their security offerings and add upselling opportunities. “We can’t wait to get back on the road and highlight the opportunities that our solutions now offer to businesses,” Laurence said. He continues: “By adding the XDL12TT-WE, the system can now be configured to deliver voice push notifications for early warning of intrusion, while adding and linking our cameras also provides Full-HD video verification. This provides professional installers with an added layer of security protection; detecting intruders before they can even have the opportunity to break in, while easily upselling to video monitoring and verification. Full-HD visualisation of the event The users are provided with an immediate voice push notification to alert them, with Full-HD visualisation of the event"“Now, installers leave nothing to the imagination of the user, by bridging the gap between assuming and knowing; so whether it’s their children coming home from school, an elderly relative activating a medical alert, or an intruder, they are provided with an immediate voice push notification to alert them, with Full-HD visualisation of the event, so that they can see exactly what’s happening. “By delivering this using the PyronixCloud and ProControl+ infrastructure, there is also a wealth of customisation, branding, recurring revenue and increased customer retention benefits to enjoy, with a flexible and easy to fit wireless system.” By registering and attending one of the tour dates, professional installers can also claim a FREE Pyronix XDL12TT-WE outdoor detector, which has multi-configuration options and is easy to setup. With 1,000 of the detectors available in the Enforcer on Tour national giveaway, demand will be high, so installers should book early to avoid disappointment.
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