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Artificial intelligence (AI) is improving everyday solutions, driving efficiency in ways we never imagined possible. From self-driving cars to intelligent analytics, the far-reaching impacts of Deep Learning-based technology empower human operators to achieve results more effectively while investing fewer resources and less time. By introducing AI, solutions are not merely powered by data, but they also generate valuable intelligence. Systems which were once leveraged for a narrow, dedicated purpose, can suddenly be engaged broadly across an organisation, because the previously under-utilised data can be harnessed for enhancing productivity and performance. Video analytics software The video intelligence software processes and analyses video to detect all the people and objects that appear When it comes to physical security, for instance, video surveillance is a standard solution. Yet, by introducing AI-driven video analytics software, video data can be leveraged as intelligence in previously inaccessible ways. Here are some examples of how diverse organisations are using AI-based video intelligence solutions to enhance security and performance with searchable, actionable and quantifiable insights. Law enforcement relies on video surveillance infrastructure for extracting investigation evidence and monitoring people and spaces. Instead of manual video review and live surveillance – which is prone to human error and distraction – police can harness video content analysis to accelerate video investigations, enhance situational awareness, streamline real-time response, identify suspicious individuals and recognise patterns and anomalies in video. The video intelligence software processes and analyses video to detect all the people and objects that appear; identify, extract and classify them; and then index them as metadata that can be searched and referenced. Maintaining public safety For law enforcement, the ability to dynamically search video based on granular criteria is critical for filtering out irrelevant details and pinpointing objects of interest, such as suspicious persons or vehicles. Beyond accelerating video evidence review and extraction, police can leverage video analysis to configure sophisticated real-time alerts when people, vehicles or behaviours of interest are detected in video. Instead of actively monitoring video feeds, law enforcement can assess triggered alerts and decide how to respond. In this way, officers can also react faster to emergencies, threats and suspicious activity as it develops. Video analysis empowers cities to harness their video surveillance data as operational intelligence Empowering law enforcement to maintain public safety is important beyond the benefit of increasing security: A city with a reputation for effective, reliable law enforcement and enhanced safety is more likely to attract residents, visitors and new businesses, exponentially driving its economic development. Furthermore, in cities where law enforcement can work productively and quickly, time and human resources can be reallocated to fostering growth and building community. Video surveillance data Video analysis empowers cities to harness their video surveillance data as operational intelligence for optimising city management and infrastructure. When video data is aggregated over time, it can be visualised into dashboards, heatmaps and reports, so operators can identify patterns and more seamlessly detect anomalous behaviour. A city could, for instance, analyse the most accident-prone local intersection and assess the traffic patterns to reveal details such as where cars are dwelling and pedestrians are walking; the directional flows of traffic; and the demographic segmentations of the objects detected: Are cars lingering in no-parking zones? Are pedestrians using designated crosswalks – is there a more logical location for the crosswalk or traffic light? Do vehicles tend to make illegal turns – should police proactively deter this behaviour, or should the city plan new infrastructure that enables vehicles to safely perform these turns? Finally, does the rise in bike traffic warrant implementing dedicated biking lanes? With video intelligence, urban planners can answer these and other questions to facilitate local improvements and high quality of life. By leveraging the video insights about citywide traffic, public transit organisations can make data-driven decisions about scheduling and services Enhancing situational awareness Insight into traffic trends is also critical for transport companies, from public transit services to transportation hubs and airports. By leveraging the video insights about citywide traffic, public transit organisations can make data-driven decisions about scheduling and services. Analysing video surveillance around bus stops, for instance, can help these companies understand the specific hours per day people tend to dwell around bus stops. Correlating this information with transactional data for each bus line, bus schedules can be optimised based on demand for individual bus lines, shortening waiting times for the most popular routes. Similarly, the traffic visualisations and activity heatmaps derived from the video of major transit hubs, such as international airports and central stations, can be beneficial for increasing security, enhancing situational awareness, identifying causes of congestion, improving throughput and efficiency and, ultimately, solving these inefficiencies to provide a streamlined customer experience for travellers. Large education campuses Campus law enforcement can leverage video data to increase situational awareness and public safety Much like a city, large education campuses have internal transportation services, residential facilities, businesses and law enforcement, and video content analysis can support the campus in intelligently managing each of those business units, while also providing video intelligence to these individual groups. Campus law enforcement can leverage video data to increase situational awareness and public safety, driving real-time responses with the ability to make informed assessments and accelerating post-event investigations with access to easily extractable video data. When campuses are expanding or developing additional infrastructure, they can plan new crosswalks, traffic lights, roads, buildings and entrances and exits based on comprehensive video intelligence. By understanding where pedestrians and vehicles dwell, walk, cross or even violate traffic laws, the campus can inform construction projects and traffic optimisation. Countless business operations The campus can leverage video business intelligence to justify leasing pricing for different retailers across campus Finally, the campus can leverage video business intelligence to justify leasing pricing for different retailers across campus, demonstrating property values based on traffic trends that can be correlated with retailer point of sale data. Whether its empowering security, productivity or decision-making, the insights generated by AI-based technology can drive significant optimisation – especially when data is fused and cross-referenced across smart sensors and systems for even deeper intelligence. In the case of AI-backed video analytics, diverse organisations can harness video surveillance impactfully and dynamically. Whereas once video technology investments could be justified for their security value – with the introduction of AI capabilities – procurement teams can evaluate these solutions for countless business operations, because they offer broadly valuable intelligence. And video surveillance and analytics is merely one example of AI-driven solutions’ potential to disrupt business as we know it.
The healthcare sector is a crucial part of a functioning society as it provides life-saving care and reassurance to the population. A key part of ensuring the professionals in this industry have the best work environment is the ongoing security of the facilities. Overcoming environmental challenges Hospitals are challenging environments for security integrators. There is little room for mistakes because staff, patients and assets cannot be compromised. Medical centres and their facilities can be vast complexes and security teams must be confident in their ability to identify and nullify threats as soon as possible. Chubb provided Queensland Children’s Hospital's security team with a simple and easy-to-use tool Chubb Fire & Security offers a range of intelligent video and access control systems to solve these challenges. The Queensland Children’s Hospital in Australia, formerly named Lady Cilento Children’s Hospital, is the major specialist children’s hospital for families living in Queensland and Northern New South Wales. The facility not only provides care to the local families but also the state’s sickest and most critically injured children who need highly specialised care. This state-of-the-art hospital, coupled with a leading academic and research facility and the high calibre staff, provides a platform to continue to develop as a leader in paediatric health care, education and research. Comprehensive security solution Chubb developed a solution for Queensland Children’s Hospital that included access control, video management, communications and asset tracking. By creating a common infrastructure for all security systems managed through a comprehensive user interface, Chubb provided the hospital’s security team with a simple and easy-to-use tool that enables them to resolve situations as they happen and action events automatically on command. Chubb also developed a 3D model of the building that allows the security team to respond quickly to a wide variety of events. The protection of patients and staff is naturally a hospital's number one priority Also crucial to the implementation of security systems in a hospital is minimal disruption to its everyday operations. Professionals in hospitals are working 24/7 so there is little time when it comes to disabling security systems for maintenance or repairs. Continued maintenance and upgrades are vital elements to Chubb’s work and key to this is a great deal of collaboration with clinical and operational stakeholders. Securing mission-critical environment Hospital facilities are not always state-of-the-art and often face the slow upgrade process that a limited budget imparts. However, through the audit and update of security systems, steps can be taken to ensure continued operations without external disruption. The protection of patients and staff is naturally a hospital's number one priority and Chubb shares the same commitment to making sure the environment is safe and secure. Carrying out a technically demanding project in a large, mission-critical environment like a hospital takes strong teamwork, including expert strategic partners, and collaboration between stakeholders.
There’s almost no installation that goes 100-percent smoothly in the field of video surveillance. Unexpected issues routinely arise that can increase time on the job, cost of the project and frustration. Manufacturers work on the product side to help ensure their products are easy to install and – when troublesome situations do arise – are flexible enough for installers to quickly find a remedy. Importance of ease of installation Ease of installation is a very important part of the project to the system integrator because the cost of labour is variable Ease of installation is a very important part of the project to the system integrator because the cost of labour is variable and can be very expensive. In some cases, the cost of labour to install a camera can be more than the cost of the camera! If labour costs are high – or are more expensive than a system integrator planned – they can lose a great deal of money on a project. If a cautious system integrator includes too high of an estimate for labour in a project bid, his overall bid will to high and it could cost him the project. The easier the camera is to install, the lower the labour cost, subsequently achieving higher savings for end-users. Hence it is essential that camera manufacturers develop products that are easy to install or are flexible in the field for system integrators and installers who know that time is money. Enterprise projects can involve thousands of cameras installed Simplifying installation of cameras Camera installation typically involves an electrician, the camera installer and the person who configures the VMS (Video Management Software). Of course, one person can play all three roles, and in many cases, does, but enterprise projects can involve dozens, hundreds or even thousands of cameras with teams of individuals involved in an installation. The electrician runs conduit with an electrical or PoE (Power over Ethernet) connection to the housing or the backplate of the camera; the installer then installs the camera at that location, hooking it up to power; and then a configurator adds cameras to the network and makes adjustments – renaming the camera, setting the frame rate, enabling WDR (Wide Dynamic Range), and the like. When it’s a project that involves different players for any of these functions, there is the potential for a bottleneck and delay in project completion. And if a system integrator is paying an electrician, installer and software configurator – and they are all three on site waiting for each other to finish – that’s a system integrator’s worst-case scenario. Enhancement through modular cameras Video surveillance camera manufacturers like Hanwha Techwin are producing products that take different roles Video surveillance camera manufacturers like Hanwha Techwin are producing products that take the different roles of electrician, installer and configurator into consideration, allowing them to complete their tasks independently. With a focus on modular design which includes a USB dongle, a device manager, magnetic module and included accessories, the Wisenet X series Plus is one of the fastest cameras to install, service and upgrade – saving installers time and money. Wisenet X series Plus cameras have a detachable camera module that utilise magnets to lock into the housing for instant configuration. Electricians can run conduit with a single PoE connection to the back plate/housing while the configurator is working on configuring the camera module, allowing security professionals to later snap the camera into place in just minutes. The VMS configurator can then come and add the cameras to the network and program their functionality. Modular cameras offer flexibility In the past, an end user might determine after the camera is installed that there aren’t enough pixels on target, or they need certain different functions like video analytics for example, resulting in the time-consuming replacement of the entire camera. With modular-designed cameras, the camera module can be swapped with a new one without having to focus or replace the camera – even to change the resolution or field of view, also Wisenet X series Plus has optional PTRZ modules that can be remotely adjusted to the field of view and the position of the camera lens. Making camera adjustments in the field is also now easier and perhaps even safer. Installers have been known to climb a ladder and juggle a bulky laptop to access the network to be able to see video of how the camera is positioned. Or they’ve had to use analogue video output to view the video feed on a separate monitor which provides the field of view, but not megapixel quality. Using a smartphone, the installer can wirelessly see full and not cropped quality video directly from the camera Wisenet X series Plus cameras have a USB port that allows installers to connect it to a small dongle that converts the camera to a Wi-Fi device. Using a smartphone, the installer can wirelessly see full and not cropped quality video directly from the camera. It’s a much easier way to evaluate video while at the camera. Eliminating the second person looking at live view on a computer guiding through a cellphone to the installer to accurately point the camera to the proper position. If system integrators can do some of the legwork prior to even getting on site, it can reduce cost and improve efficiency. Imagine having 300 cameras ready to send to a project site. To configure those cameras, a system integrator has to take each camera out of the box, plug each into a switch, configure it, take it off of the switch and put it back in the box. To improve this process, camera manufacturers have now developed packaging that provides access to the camera port without even having to remove it from the box. It’s an innovative solution that saves time. Modular cameras have optional PTRZ modules that can be remotely adjusted to the field of view Software programs help in enhancing installation Whether it’s a one-man show or a team of electricians, installers and configurators, software programs can greatly enhance the installation process. Device managers are important tools in adding multiple cameras to a project. Using that 300-camera project, for example, it’s easier when a manufacturer has a device manager that allows the mass programming and configuration of cameras. Adding 300 cameras one by one is time consuming and leaves room for error when making so many multiple entries. A device manager should be able to scan the network and locate its devices, allowing them to be grouped, configured and much more. Every video surveillance camera project is going to have its ups and downs. But camera manufacturers can do their part in the production process to address the many issues known to slow down progress. It’s impressive that many are taking the lead in producing innovations like modular camera design, flexibility in the field and accessible packaging that can truly reduce installation cost and improve efficiency.
The high cost of thermal imaging cameras historically made their use more likely in specialised law enforcement and military applications. However, lower pricing of thermal imaging technologies has opened up a new and expanding market for thermal cameras in the mainstream. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the new opportunities for thermal cameras in mainstream physical security?
The new school year is a good time to reflect on the role of security in protecting our schools. From video to access control to some newer technologies, our Expert Panel Roundtable found plenty to talk about when we asked this week’s question: How does security technology make our schools safer?
Pivot3, global provider of intelligent infrastructure solutions, has announced the Virtual Security Operations Center (Virtual SOC), designed to address the need for security teams to access client workstations running video surveillance and other related systems in multiple locations without using expensive, dedicated client workstation hardware. Virtual Security Operations Center With the Pivot3 Virtual SOC, security teams can now get fully functional security workstation capabilities With the Pivot3 Virtual SOC, security teams can now get fully functional security workstation capabilities – including video surveillance, access control, PSIM, and other security-related systems – on more devices, more securely and more cost effectively than desktop workstations. Mission-critical security environments require remote and immediate access to video and other security data coming from cameras and devices at multiple locations to improve incident response times and situational awareness. Processing integrated security data Until now, however, these type of security operations centers have relied on dedicated, expensive physical workstations to process video streams and integrated security data, which require extremely high levels of compute power and exposes data to potential unauthorised access. Furthermore, physical workstations lack critical fail-over and high availability capabilities and are cumbersome to manage and administer. The Pivot3 Virtual SOC delivers fully functional client workstation capability to any device including low-cost thin/zero clients, remote client PCs and laptops, video walls and mobile devices. Replacing expensive graphics-enabled workstations with flexible, secure thin- and zero-clients reduces upfront capital equipment costs and on-going maintenance and management expenses. Data and cyber security The Pivot3 Virtual SOC works with any video management software, regardless of brand Video data is stored and secured in the Virtual SOC’s central storage system while only a secure, encrypted desktop image is streamed to the remote device, ensuring that all sensitive information remains protected and secured at the central host site. This also enables the security team to share video with outside agencies and organisations in a more immediate, secure and bandwidth-efficient fashion. The Pivot3 Virtual SOC works with any video management software, regardless of brand. “Security teams must have the ability to access video and related systems securely on any device, including mobile clients, to facilitate a faster and more intelligent response to an incident,” said Brandon Reich, Vice President, Security and IoT, Pivot3. Incident management “The Pivot3 Virtual SOC delivers virtualised video workstation capability that provides better security, faster remediation and a rich mobile experience for enhanced situational awareness and provides compelling economics since it eliminates the need for expensive, dedicated workstations.” Organisations with distributed locations such as university, corporate, and medical campus environments, airports, safe cities, casinos, entertainment complexes, and correctional facilities all benefit from high-performance, virtual security workstations to provide real-time insight in the event of an incident. Mission-critical security environments A security manager or agency can leverage the Pivot3 Virtual SOC to deliver real-time, fully functional security systems to any mobile device in use by distributed security personnel, reducing their risk through better situational awareness and faster response. Pivot3’s intelligent hybrid cloud and IoT solutions provide security, resilience and management simplicity “Within mission-critical security environments, organisations require a scalable and easy-to-manage solution that maintains the integrity of mission-critical video and data,” said Todd Brown, President, Affinitech, Inc. “The Pivot3 Virtual SOC exceeds all expectations by delivering a cost-effective replacement for physical workstations, improving ROI while increasing operator visibility.” Intelligent hybrid cloud, IoT Pivot3’s intelligent hybrid cloud and IoT solutions provide security, resilience and management simplicity at scale for customers’ mission-critical environments. Powered by the industry’s only Intelligence Engine, Pivot3 automates the management of multiple, mixed application workloads, delivers industry-leading performance at scale, eliminates unplanned downtime and reduces the cost of traditional IT infrastructure by half or more.
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