CCTV cameras - Expert commentary

Can CCTV become a more effective tool?
Can CCTV become a more effective tool?

We all know that having CCTV around your home can help to protect you and your family. Without CCTV, you could end up in danger and an intruder could get away with breaking into your house, hurting your loved ones and stealing your possessions. Similarly, without CCTV in the office, you’ll be leaving yourself open to all kinds of damage and could lose a lot of equipment in the process. In short, making sure you have CCTV is important for both home and business security. However, it can be improved to become a more effective system so that you’re better protected, and can even deter a potential intruder without having to panic. In our world of ever-changing technology, we’re able to upgrade and enhance our CCTV systems so they can become a monitored system. Remote CCTV monitoring is an ideal way to protect everyone and everything whether you’re at home or at a workplace. What is remote CCTV monitoring? For a long time, CCTV was one of the best ways to keep your home, the office and people safe. But people started to notice that it would only deter people so much of the time and often the cameras were ignored by intruders. They would just cover their faces and hope for the best as they steal from a home, office or any other premises. Remote CCTV monitoring is a system that can loop into your existing CCTV, or come preinstalled with a new system. This technology sends a feed to a control room full of trained operators that are on call 24/7. Within this control room, operators are able to respond to any sort of distress call or unauthorised movement on the property line.  How does it work? Remote CCTV monitoring works by attaching to a live feed of your CCTV system, existing or new, so that the signal and images can be passed to a team of operators. These operators are on hand 24/7 so that if there is a problem, you know that you're safe in the hands of a specialist team. The specialist team has been trained to mitigate the chances of somebody breaking into your home when the system is triggered; similarly they call the local authorities instantly so that the potential intruder has less time to flee the scene. This is especially important if an intruder is already inside your property because they have less time to steal your items and leave. Without CCTV in the office, you’ll be leaving yourself open to all kinds of damage and could lose a lot of equipment in the process One of the biggest questions that revolve around remote CCTV monitoring is the idea of operators watching the CCTV at all times. Luckily most remote CCTV monitoring systems will incorporate a motion detection system to accompany your CCTV. Motion detection offers the ability to alert a control room if there is an unauthorised entry to the property line. These motion detection systems are state-of-the-art and so, depending on the system that you choose, they can watch over your property from a number of angles. Once the motion detection system has been triggered and the alert has been sent to the control room, then and only then will the operators get involved. This means that until the motion detection system has been triggered, nobody will watch your live CCTV feed. After one of the systems has been triggered, one of the specialist operators will instantly jump into action. This means that they can take different measures to deter any potential intruder and make sure that they do everything in their power to stop any damage or theft from the premises. In addition to the motion detection system and CCTV, you are able to opt for a public address (PA) system too. This means that an operator is able to shout commands through the PA system and potentially scare away any intruder. The intruder will also be warned about the fact that local authorities have already been called to the location.  Remote monitoring versus traditional CCTV Motion detection offers the ability to alert a control room if there is an unauthorised entry to the property line Having a monitored CCTV system means that you're able to better protect yourself, your business, employees and even your loved ones. Whether you're at home or in the office, having someone looking over your shoulder protecting your every move is something that can be appreciated by everybody. The biggest problem with just having traditional CCTV, is that it is a reactive system. This means that rather than stopping crime, a CCTV system just records it. While the thought is that having a CCTV camera visible can deter some intruders, there's no real evidence to suggest that it stops anybody; anyone can simply cover their face and carry on breaking into your home, office or even your car. As mentioned, remote CCTV monitoring is going to tackle that problem and make sure that someone is on hand to protect you at all times.

The digital transformation of access control solutions
The digital transformation of access control solutions

The safeguarding of premises through the monitoring of entrance and exit points has traditionally been a very manual aspect of security. Human operators have been relied on to make decisions about who to admit and deny based on levels of authorisation and the appropriate credentials. But the access control business, like many industries before it, is undergoing its own digital transformation; one where the protection of premises, assets and people is increasingly delivered by interconnected systems utilising IoT devices and cloud infrastructure to offer greater levels of security and protection. Modern access control solutions range from simple card readers to two factor authentication systems using video surveillance as a secondary means of identification, right through to complex networks of thermal cameras, audio speakers and sensors. These systems, connected through the cloud, can be customised and scaled to meet the precise requirements of today’s customer. And it’s the ease of cloud integration, combined with open technologies and platforms that is encouraging increasing collaboration and exciting developments while rendering legacy systems largely unfit for purpose. Remote management and advanced diagnostics Cloud technology and IoT connectivity means remote management and advanced diagnostics form an integral part of every security solution.Cloud technology and IoT connectivity means remote management and advanced diagnostics form an integral part of every security solution. For example, as the world faces an unprecedented challenge and the COVID-19 pandemic continues to cause disruption, the ability to monitor and manage access to sites remotely is a welcome advantage for security teams who might otherwise have to check premises in person and risk breaking social distancing regulations. The benefits of not physically having to be on site extend to the locations within which these technologies can be utilised. As an example, within a critical infrastructure energy project, access can be granted remotely for maintenance on hard to reach locations. Advanced diagnostics can also play a part in such a scenario. When access control is integrated with video surveillance and IP audio, real-time monitoring of access points can identify possible trespassers with automated audio messages used to deter illegal access and making any dangers clear. And with video surveillance in the mix, high quality footage can be provided to authorities with real-time evidence of a crime in progress. Comprehensive protection in retail Within the retail industry, autonomous, cashier-less stores are already growing in popularity The use of connected technologies for advanced protection extends to many forward-looking applications. Within the retail industry, autonomous, cashier-less stores are already growing in popularity. Customers are able to use mobile technology to self-scan their chosen products and make payments, all from using a dedicated app. From an access control and security perspective, connected doors can be controlled to protect staff and monitor shopper movement. Remote management includes tasks such as rolling out firmware updates or restarting door controllers, with push notifications sent immediately to security personnel in the event of a breach or a door left open. Remote monitoring access control in storage In the storage facility space, this too can now be entirely run through the cloud with remote monitoring of access control and surveillance providing a secure and streamlined service. There is much to gain from automating the customer journey, where storage lockers are selected online and, following payment, customers are granted access. Through an app the customer can share their access with others, check event logs, and activate notifications. With traditional padlocks the sharing of access is not as practical, and it’s not easy for managers to keep a record of storage locker access. Online doors and locks enable monitoring capabilities and heightened security for both operators and customers. The elimination of manual tasks, in both scenarios, represents cost savings. When doors are connected to the cloud, their geographical location is rendered largely irrelevant. Online doors and locks enable monitoring capabilities and heightened security for both operators and customers They become IoT devices which are fully integrated and remotely programmable from anywhere, at any time. This creates a powerful advantage for the managers of these environments, making it possible to report on the status of a whole chain of stores, or to monitor access to numerous storage facilities, using the intelligence that the technology provides from the data it collects. Open platforms power continuous innovation All of these examples rely on open technology to make it possible, allowing developers and technology providers to avoid the pitfalls that come with the use of proprietary systems. The limitations of such systems have meant that the ideas, designs and concepts of the few have stifled the creativity and potential of the many, holding back innovation and letting the solutions become tired and their application predictable. Proprietary systems have meant that solution providers have been unable to meet their customers’ requirements until the latest upgrade becomes available or a new solution is rolled out. This use of open technology enables a system that allows for collaboration, the sharing of ideas and for the creation of partnerships to produce ground-breaking new applications of technology. Open systems demonstrate a confidence in a vendor’s own solutions and a willingness to share and encourage others to innovate and to facilitate joint learning. An example of the dynamic use of open technology is Axis’ physical access control hardware, which enables partners to develop their own cloud-based software for control and analysis of access points, all the while building and expanding on Axis’ technology platform. Modern access control solutions range from simple card readers to two factor authentication systems using video surveillance as a secondary means of identification Opportunities for growth Open hardware, systems and platforms create opportunities for smaller and younger companies to participate and compete, giving them a good starting point, and some leverage within the industry when building and improving upon existing, proven technologies. This is important for the evolution and continual relevance of the physical security industry in a digitally enabled world. Through increased collaboration across technology platforms, and utilising the full range of possibilities afforded by the cloud environment, the manufacturers, vendors and installers of today’s IP enabled access control systems can continue to create smart solutions to meet the ever-changing demands and requirements of their customers across industry.

Optimising large-scale event security and operations with intelligent video surveillance
Optimising large-scale event security and operations with intelligent video surveillance

Large event venues spend significant resources on physical security, and the vast majority invest in video surveillance systems as a way of monitoring public areas such as parking lots, garages and seating, as well as “backstage” areas such as loading docks and offices. Even though the camera footage is often preserved for investigating incidents, for the most part, video footage goes untapped because – realistically – security staff cannot constantly and efficiently monitor cameras in real-time or review the high volumes of archived video. Video analytics powered by Artificial Intelligence Increasingly, event venues are overcoming this challenge and maximising this video data by investing in intelligent video surveillance. In this article, I will explore how the combination of traditional surveillance and groundbreaking video content analytics enables event venues to not only optimise physical security and safety, but also improve customer service, streamline operations, and gather valuable business intelligence. Deep learning and artificial intelligence-based video content analytic systems detect, identify, extract, and catalog all the objects that appear in video footage based on classes and attributes such as gender, appearance similarity, color or size. This – along with behavioral detection, such as object interactions, dwell times, and navigation paths, as well as face and license plate recognition – enables searchable, actionable and quantifiable analysis of video. The technology makes it easy for users to accelerate post-event investigations, improve situational awareness, and derive critical business insights from video data. Accelerate post-event investigations, improve situational awareness, and derive critical business insights Accelerating investigations Where there are crowds, it’s not uncommon for medical or criminal incidents to transpire. In the aftermath, security teams must quickly understand the scene and, by making video searchable, video analytics helps them efficiently gather information or evidence from multiple camera. Whereas a manual search of video footage would require hours, if not days, of valuable time and staff resources – while being subject to human error – a video content analytics system enables effective multi-video search using a variety of filters, so that post-incident investigations can be focused and, thereby, accelerated. For instance, if witnesses claim that a man in a yellow shirt caused a disturbance and then drove away in a blue pickup truck, security could filter video to review instances where people or vehicles matching those descriptions appeared, and then focus their investigation on relevant video evidence. For the same example, if the perpetrator was still at large in the venue, security managers would want to track the person’s movements and, ultimately, apprehend him. Using the same cataloged metadata that drives video search, intelligent video surveillance accelerates real-time response to developing situations from threats and suspicious behaviors to emergencies, or even any behavior that requires closer monitoring or intervention. Something as mundane as an unwieldy queue forming at a concession stand can alert logic that increases operators’ situational awareness and ability to effectively intervene. By understanding developing situations in real-time, they can respond more quickly to prevent or solve a problem. Rule-based real time alerts Users can configure rule-based real-time alerts, based on specific scenarios – such as when people counts in the defined space next to the cashier are higher than the specified threshold, indicating a queue, or when vehicles are detected dwelling in a no-park zone or sensitive security area. In the case of the offender in the yellow shirt, security could configure alerts to notify for appearances of men in yellow shirts or blue pickup trucks within the event complex. If they’re able to extract the perpetrator’s face or license plate from the video search, security officers can also identify and track the specific person and vehicle of interest. Intelligent video surveillance users can compile “watchlists” Object recognition is helpful for tracking specific, identified threats, but it can also be leveraged for locating missing persons or vehicles or offering VIP services to guests who comply. Intelligent video surveillance users can compile “watchlists” – that include persons of interest, such as past agitators, recognised criminals or terrorists, missing persons or VIPs – to be alerted when matches for these faces appear in video. Face recognition can also be used to differentiate recognised employees from visitors that are not authorised to be in certain spaces in order to prevent security breaches. Because camera conditions aren’t always optimal for “in the wild” face and license plate recognition – where lighting conditions or camera angles don’t always allow for a pristine face or plate capture – it is critical to have a comprehensive video content analysis tool for triggering alerts based object classifications and non-personally-identifiable parameters. Optimising operations based on business intelligence While having real-time situational awareness is crucial for proactive intervention to developing situations, understanding long-term activity and trends can be equally important for an events venue or stadium. With video analytics, video surveillance data can be aggregated over time to generate statistical intelligence, trend reports, and data visualisations for operational intelligence. This capability transforms video surveillance from a siloed security tool to an intelligence platform with broad value for business groups across the organisation. Marketing departments can gain visitor demographic information for targeted advertising and product placements. On-site retailers can uncover how visitors navigate their stores and the products or spaces that draw the most attention. Property management can follow heatmaps demonstrating where visitors dwell and the durations they stay at certain exhibits or areas, to base rental and leasing fees on actionable and quantifiable intelligence. Operations managers can more effectively plan and hire staff for events, by analysing visitor traffic trends, entry and exit points and occupancy statistics.   Video surveillance data can be aggregated over time to generate statistical intelligence For these reasons and more, event organisations that already rely on CCTV networks should consider how to better leverage those existing investments to deliver substantial value across the organisation. By making video searchable, actionable and quantifiable, intelligent video surveillance empowers event managers to enhance public safety and physical security, while also streamlining operations and improving customer service.

Latest Moxa Europe GmbH news

Moxa launches Turbo Pack 3 firmware for industrial Ethernet switches, enhancing device security
Moxa launches Turbo Pack 3 firmware for industrial Ethernet switches, enhancing device security

Moxa's EDS-G500E and EDS-518E/528E DIN-rail switches support Turbo Pack 3, and all of Moxa's industrial Ethernet switches will support the new firmware by 2017 Moxa, a provider of network infrastructure solutions for the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), announced a new firmware upgrade for its industrial Ethernet switches with major enhancements for its security functionalities. This new firmware, called Turbo Pack 3, is not only compliant with the IEC 62443-4-2 level 2 cybersecurity standard, but also supports other security management features, such as MAC Address and RADIUS authentication to prevent from unauthorised access, known security leaks and unknown attacks. At present, Moxa's EDS-G500E and EDS-518E/528E DIN-rail switches support Turbo Pack 3, and all of Moxa's industrial Ethernet switches will support the new firmware by 2017. Increased device-level security According to an ICS-CERT report, cyber-attacks on the critical manufacturing sector increased by 50% from 2014 to 2015. The report noted that a lack of proper access management and network probing are among the most common network vulnerabilities. One of the key mechanisms to ensure a safe and reliable network is to strengthen device-level security. Turbo Pack 3 ensures Moxa's switches comply with the IEC 62443-4-2 level 2 standard, which provides technical security requirements and guidelines for network device suppliers and engineers. Moreover, the new firmware upgrade supports MAC authentication bypass via RADIUS server, and also fixes certain security vulnerabilities to protect the switches from malicious intrusion. Ensure network availability The firmware upgrade also supports enhancements in redundancy technologies, such as V-ON, traffic management, and real-time event notifications. With these new functionalities, Moxa's switches are enable higher network availability and reliability, which is crucial for mission-critical applications.

SeeTec physical security solutions secure oil and gas industry
SeeTec physical security solutions secure oil and gas industry

SeeTec video technology helps to detect situations at an early stage and thus assists in avoiding consequences Despite of the development of alternative and renewable energies, oil and gas still represent the engine of the world economy. Exploration takes place under increasingly challenging conditions often in remote locations. Security requirements, already high, continue to rise. This is not surprising as incidents during up-, mid- and downstream processing can cause immense damage to people and the environment. Video technology systems from SeeTec help detecting situations at an early stage and thus assist in avoiding consequences – at all process levels. SeeTec Cayuga for staff safety Video technology is generally used on drilling vessels and –platforms to monitor the drilling and mining process and to ensure the staff’s safety. SeeTec Cayuga can easily be integrated into this process and also into higher level systems such as DCS for example. Video is then a part of an overall solution using TCP triggers or I/O modules to communicate with the sensor- and control technology. If for example a sensor detects high pressure in the system, an automatic video fly-out window showing video streams of relevant areas is displayed on the screens in the control room. SeeTec Cayuga also supports thermal cameras. Using them, high temperatures can be detected based on the colours displayed. Using video technology critical situations can be detected and validated much faster, giving staff more time to react on the basis of more information. Video analytics with SeeTec video management software Especially the transportation of gas and oil from the production sites to the refineries and the tank farms is a dangerous process. Big parts of overland pipelines lead over uninhabited areas without significant infrastructure, making the monitoring of leaks complicated. Also in politically unstable regions the risk of attacks is a serious threat. If the transportation is done by sea the risk of damage and harm affects not only the vessel but also has impact on the environment. Using SeeTec video management software pipelines are monitored permanently over long distances even if there is only low banded infrastructure. By using intelligent video analytics and by linking to process monitoring systems the attention of the security staff is drawn to possible dangers or incidents. SeeTec video systems provide protection for every need. With SeeTec the building perimeter is continuously monitored Perimeter protection with integrated security systems Next to the operational safety in refineries and production plants, safeguarding against unauthorised access is an important issue. SeeTec video systems provide protection for every need. With SeeTec the building perimeter is continuously monitored. Through the integrated video analytics and the additional analytics interface to third-party applications an automatic perimeter protection is supported. So, for example, a person trying to climb over the premises’ fences will be visualised automatically on the Client in the control room. A built-in license plate recognition solution and the integration of access control applications complement the SeeTec range. In the refinery the video system can also be seamlessly integrated into production processes. It is possible to trigger alarms or other actions over sensors or management systems by using TCP signals or I/O-modules. SeeTec’s modular architecture makes it easy for the product portfolio to grow with increasing demands and/or the growing operational areas. Using distributed installations it is possible to combine several locations to just one bandwidth-optimised system. An extended safety structure ensures that the system keeps on recording images and stays in operational mode even if the management or recording server fails. Retail security Gas stations are at the end of the value chain. They are not struggling with process safety but with robberies and thefts. SeeTec delivers video solutions, which perfectly reflect the branch structure of such a business. SeeTec keeps the costs for the camera infrastructure low by realising a bandwidth-saving usage involving several locations and by using intelligent camera features (VCAM). At the gas station the video technology can also be connected directly to the business processes, so for instance it is possible to combine the video images coming from the pump or the cash area with the accounting data by using the SeeTec POS-Interface. With the automatic license plate recognition a petrol theft can be identified easily – if a car, which already was registered with a tank fraud, is recognised in front of a gas pump, the pump can be locked. Benefits  Modular and flexibly expandable solution Support of a great number of cameras of all leading manufacturers (incl. thermal cameras, LPR cameras, outdoor cameras for special requirements) Integrated video analytics and license plate recognition Communication with third-party systems using TCP signals or I/O modules (Moxa, Adam etc.) Easy handling and operation, also on touch-based systems or mobile devices Project experiences and certifications in the oil & gas-sector

Moxa's formal education and certification program launched
Moxa's formal education and certification program launched

The Moxa University aims to ensure smooth knowledge transfer across the supply and value chains The new Moxa University is a formal education and certification program to impart profound knowledge of network design, installation and maintenance to Moxa´s distribution partners. Moxa's increasingly strong footprint in industrial installations across Europe has been a major achievement, and a source of pride for Moxa´s European team. The reliable operation of these installations is Moxa´s primary objective. The Moxa University aims to ensure smooth knowledge transfer across the supply and value chains - from the developers of Moxa products to the customer´s network administrators. Formal training program that supports Moxa´s partners Industrial networks and their components, such as embedded computers, automation systems, or video surveillance devices are challenging microcosms far beyond the selection of reliable products. To anticipate and counteract their challenges, Steve Lin, Moxa Europe's General Manager, decided to establish a formal training program that supports Moxa´s partners, and ultimately Moxa´s customers, in achieving reliable industrial operation. "Moxa's aim has always been to provide reliable networks. Now we want to make sure that our customers learn how to convert our reliable products into reliable operation and consequently added value for themselves", says Steve Lin. “This is why we developed a training program that addresses our customer´s needs, and those of our partners, and our employees. They all can train to become `Moxa Certified Engineers´.” To ensure that the knowledge transfer can take place right where Moxa´s customers need it, Moxa reverts to their broad network of official distribution partners that all attend the annual Moxa Technical Certification trainings. The best of these Moxa Certified Engineers have recently undergone an additional train-the-trainer program. As a result, the first four graduates of the program, coming from Moxa distributors in Poland – Elmark Automation, Spain – Tempel Group, UK - IT4Automation & Croatia – Selmet, can now call themselves Moxa Certified Trainers and share their knowledge in so-called Moxa Training Centers. Centrally managed updated set of training materials The four distributors with Moxa Training Centers form the basis of a growing network of Moxa Authorised Training Centers situated in close proximity to Moxa´s European customers. They benefit from a centrally managed, continually updated set of training materials that include the experience and expert knowledge of the Moxa Certified Trainers all over the continent.

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