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A total of £1.6 billion worth of goods are reported as ‘lost’ to in-store theft in supermarkets each year, with figures increasing steadily. The presence of self-checkout systems have increased in supermarkets, as well as other industry retailers. By 2021, we’re globally on track to have 468,000 self-checkout machines in operation, nearly double the 240,000 in existence since 2016. While this increase comes with such benefits as reduced wait times for customers and staff costs, it also comes with a risk of retail theft at self-checkouts. With the circumstances the world now finds itself in i.e. mass unemployment, financial uncertainty, the retail industry has seen an influx in these types of petty crimes, hitting retailers during an already turbulent period. While retailers are taking precautions to protect themselves and their patrons in this new era of in-person shopping, it’s important to ensure the business itself is protected. A popular method to combat these fears is to employ on-site security personnel, however, as we continue to adapt to new operating guidelines, retailers must begin thinking past the immediate future, and begin implementing long-term security solutions to prepare for life after lockdown such as strong CCTV systems with remote access. How has the security industry adapted its services to a post-lockdown world? Technological innovations like thermal recognition are key to adapting security systems for a post-lockdown world. Businesses which previously relied on facial recognition now must update their methods to account for shoppers wearing masks on-site and in-store. By 2021, we’re globally on track to have 468,000 self-checkout machines in operation, nearly double the 240,000 in existence since 2016 Biometric systems are now able to identify people with face masks, and thermal recognition such ADT’s Thermi-Scan system which can track human body temperature without the need for contact. Implementing these safe protocol procedures protect both employees and customers against virus outbreaks such as COVID-19. The need for these advances in video surveillance will reportedly increase the biometric facial recognition market by 14 per cent by 2027. Artificial intelligence has been hailed recently as the way forward for remote security needs, and whilst business-owners continue to navigate procedures of returning to work post-lockdown, having remote access to real-time security monitoring is essential now more than ever. What are the main measures stores can take to prevent or reduce theft? Strategically placing a multi-camera surveillance system to ensure clarity, eliminate blind spots, and deter thieves should be top priority. It’s equally essential to invest in a system which has an efficient playback programme, particularly in situations where reviewing important footage efficiently can offer vital information to the police force. Advances in video surveillance will reportedly increase the biometric facial recognition market by 14 per cent by 2027 As business-owners continue operating at reduced hours and with limited on-site staff, being able to access camera footage quickly and remotely is a key factor to consider. Whether owners opt to receive an alert on a mobile device allowing them to review notifications, or if their system is monitored by a remote security centre, it’s important to be able to access footage quickly for added efficiency and ease. Facial recognition and AI have been popular points of discussion in relation to security cameras and CCTV. While careful considerations must be taken prior to utilising any sort of facial recognition technology, including conducting a Privacy Impact Assessment, the benefits include being provided with real-time tracking of repeat offenders which immensely helps the prevention of in-store theft. Here are some key points to consider when choosing in-store surveillance: Assess your needs – To get the best out of your security system, it is essential to analyse what your requirements are for your business as they might have changed to adapt to a post-lockdown world Camera setup – With store layouts shifting to accommodate social distancing guidelines, it’s important to re-evaluate the current set-up of any security cameras. Depending on any layout updates, it might be important to consider operating multiple cameras in one area to ensure a peripheral view and eliminate any blind spots Camera positioning – For optimal performance, check that light sources are not obstructing your view such as glare from the sun. It is also worth considering the height at which cameras are installed to maximise surveillance Check the focus – It is worth testing camera lenses bi-monthly to ensure that lighting or weather hasn’t affected the focus of the lens, resulting in a blurry visual Remote access – As guidelines continue to evolve, ensure you’re able to access any necessary camera footage quickly and safely in case of emergency Will we begin to see a reduction of theft as new technology is implemented? We’re beginning to see incidents of shoplifting and theft being taken more seriously by law enforcement. In the coming months, for the first time in Britain nearly twenty shoplifters who were either caught red-handed or identified on CCTV will be appearing before magistrates. While currently these court cases are being pursued by a private police force, these actions come after a Government plea to high-level police to prosecute shoplifters stealing under £200. Retailers have long voiced concerns that forces have abandoned low-level thefts and these steps are small but show that businesses are being heard. As innovations in surveillance security continue, we’ll be seeing a move away from human involvement which will create a more reliable and efficient system able to rely on machine learning and analytics. While there have been wider strides made in utilising AI for surveillance, these are largely being used currently by local governments to alert police forces to threats of criminal activity. It’s not unreasonable to think that in the near future, these types of smart technology will be employed by private businesses to analyse suspicious behaviour or possible theft. However, as we see an increase in the advancement of security technology, we anticipate that those inclined to commit in-store theft will adapt their methods, therefore retailers should look to regularly evaluate their security needs to keep risks at bay.
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.
With the pandemic still in full swing and no certainty as to when exactly it will come to an end, the world has been battling anxiety for months now. And with each day, circumstances change quickly and almost make it impossible to predict what will happen next, how events will unfold, and what actions to take in light of a new situation. But one thing is certain: the world has been shut down and paralysed for way too long, and the eventual reopening is unavoidable – in fact, it’s well under way. In this situation, what is possible to control is how the world will continue reopening – and specifically, how to ensure the safest possible reopening that will ensure the return of some degree of normalcy to people’s lives and business operations, while also managing the risk of COVID’s spread in the most efficient way. Our highly digitised, technologically advanced world This is when the power of technology comes to rescue the day: what truly sets the global crisis we face today apart from other calamities that humanity has encountered over year is the fact that it has developed in a highly digitised, technologically advanced world where each day brings about innovations with a sole purpose to make daily life and operations easier and more streamlined. And among these, the star of the past decade has been artificial intelligence. The world has been shut down and paralysed for way too long, and the eventual reopening is unavoidable – in fact, it’s well under way While AI has many avenues of introducing efficiency and fast problem-solving, there is one specific application that will further fuel the reopening of the world and successfully keep the spread of the virus abate. This “collaborative security” application includes a synthesis of smart video analytics, facial recognition, object identification/detection, and thermal cameras that can support the reopening of businesses globally when installed within those facilities frequented by customers. With such a level of sophistication that can ensure uninterrupted monitoring and analysis of large public spaces, these AI technologies can ideally operate best as cloud solutions to ensure a collaborative network with maximum scalability and widespread implementation. As these technologies increase in ubiquity and find their way into daily operations of businesses globally, the cost of the smart solutions will decrease proportionally to the growth of their reach. There are some highly specific ways to create this collaborative network of interconnected safety tools in the current climate. Here are some applications that have been successful to date and will increase in usability in the foreseeable future, creating “smart cities” working together towards a safer, more secure world. Maintaining social distancing practices The most important step everyone around the world has taken to contribute to the effort of slowing the spread of the virus has been social distancing. A six-foot-distance has become a new social norm that has quickly been adopted globally and become a habit to people who are naturally used to being close to others and socialising without giving distance a second thought. The star of the past decade has been artificial intelligence So, it is natural that such distancing measures take time to get accustomed to – and it is also natural that individuals may forget about them from time to time. To help maintain the six-foot distance between people at all times and give them slight nudges to keep the rule top of their minds, AI video technology can be trained to estimate the distance between individuals in public and commercial areas and identify the cases in which people get too close to each other. By notifying local merchants or authorities about such cases, the system can help ensure the safety of everyone in the area at all times while positively reinforcing the public to gradually get more accustomed to maintaining the distance and thus helping stop the spread of the virus. Detecting the virus through facial recognition Perhaps the straightforward application of such high-level technology is using video surveillance to identify persons of interest who have tested positive for the virus. Modern AI has the ability to identify facial features and characteristics with a unique level of granularity, making it possible to identify individuals whose records show they have antibodies from those who can be potential carriers of the virus. After the initial differentiation and identification, the system can then notify the employers and employees of the facility about the results of the conducted analysis and the pursuant results, allowing them to be more vigilant and take action where necessary to ensure a safe experience for everyone. PPE reinforcement Wearing a mask or some sort of face coverage in public spaces and especially within facilities (such as stores, for instance) has been - and will continue to be - a requirement for maintaining a safe and healthy environment for people to continue with their day-to-day lives and businesses to resume regular operations. To this extent, the object detection and identification abilities of smart cameras can further reinforce this requirement and ensure that the absence of protective equipment doesn’t go unnoticed. Essentially, these cameras can easily identify if an individual has coverage at any given point of time or not, notifying the local authorities about any risks immediately and helping them maintain necessary safety measures without having to interrupt their workflow or worry about missing a visitor without a mask. Detecting high temperature One of the key (and the most widespread) symptoms of COVID-19 is a high fever - a certain indicator of whether an individual may have been infected with the virus or not. While identifying fever with a regular human eye is nearly impossible, AI can do so at a fraction of time by quickly scanning body temperatures of any incoming individuals and determine whether it’s above CDC’s recommended temperature of 100.4F in order to determine the risk factor and notify the local authorities to take action. Modern AI has the ability to identify facial features and characteristics with a unique level of granularity This technology is a good tactic to objectively assess potential risks that come with elevated temperatures - and sometimes, the people themselves might not realise they might (unconsciously) be carriers of the virus and thus endanger the safety of others in their vicinity. The technology is yet another step towards ensuring a safer reopening of the global economy and a more streamlined way of getting back on track while minimising the risk of spreading the virus further. It’s not all about the theory We have tested the described approaches in our own R&D campus in Europe. The latest release of the IREX cloud enables remote fever detection and monitoring of social isolation and mask policies with AI. We have integrated thermal cameras to detect people with elevated temperature and CCTV cameras for identification and notifying those who potentially ill. In case of any health threat, the venue manager gets an instant message with a picture and exact location. These preventive steps helped our employees return to the office months earlier than it's happening in other countries. Moreover, personnel coming back to the office by their own wish as now they feel a virus-free environment in the campus - even safer than in their own homes. Now we are launching a pilot project for a well-known pharmacy chain in Florida, USA. With the help of a Computer Vision platform, staff will be able to divide customer traffic into those with normal body temperature and those who come in with elevated temperatures, as well as effectively monitor social distance norms. The goal of our potential client is to maximise the safety of customers in the post-pandemic period. Also, IREX is already deployed across hundreds of locations in the UK and will add health monitoring capability soon.
ARST is a public transportation company in Cagliari, Italy. The company operates a massive fleet of about 800 public buses throughout the island of Sardinia. During the vehicle modernisation process, the company decided to deploy new centralised CCTV systems to enhance the security level of passengers and drivers. First of all, the low-definition images captured by the original surveillance equipment cannot meet the company’s advanced monitoring needs. Second, the bus driver could not achieve point-to-point communication with the command centre in real time. In addition, in case of an accident, there was no emergency button on the bus before to report the emergency to the command centre. Customised mobile solution To help ARST revamp its bus security system, a customised Dahua mobile solution consisting of more than 3,000 cameras and 750 MXVRs, Panic Buttons, DSS integrated platform as well as other accessories was employed. The data collected from the front-end cameras is integrated in the control room via DSS4004, where emergency calls, geo-localisation of vehicles and statistics can be managed. Each bus is equipped with a penta-hybrid video recorder MXVR6212, 4, 6 or 8 HAC-HDBW2241F cameras Each bus is equipped with a penta-hybrid video recorder MXVR6212, 4, 6 or 8 HAC-HDBW2241F cameras and panic buttons. The main features of the systems are: data encryption, people counting, hot spot, router 3G/4G, dynamic management of the LCD monitor on board and geo-localisation via DSS app. As the first mobile XVR adopting HDCVI/AHD/TVI/CVBS/IP signals, MXVR6212 can achieve 1080P high-definition real-time recording. High performance sensor It supports real-time vehicle location tracking and monitoring, and all information such as GPS and video can be uploaded via wireless network - 3G/4G/WIFI. In addition, the device can also support connection of various accessories, such as card readers, fuel sensors, and emergency buttons. Furthermore, it has passed EN50155/ISO16750 to meet the requirements for mobile use. Other than city bus, this device can be used in various applications, such as school bus, taxi, police car, train, truck, etc. The 2MP HAC-HDBW2241F-M-A mobile camera is designed with a shock-proof compact case, which makes it convenient to be installed and adaptable to various applications. Boasting the strengths of the Dahua self-developed HDCVI technology, the camera offers high quality images and ensures real-time transmission. Also, it adopts a high performance sensor to provide incomparable performance even under extreme lowlight environment. Manage mobile devices The Dahua mobile solution with high-definition monitoring performance reduces theft and robbery on buses The Starlight feature allows capturing of more details and recognising accurate colours at night or in scenes with limited illumination. At the control room, Dahua DSS platform was utilised to control and manage the mobile devices deployed on the bus. It displays real-time location, speed, direction of mobile device, playback device’s history location, and supports alarm for over-speeding, entering and leaving the E-FENCE. Aside from central management, the Business Intelligence feature of Dahua DSS platform also allows the user to export Heat Map reports and people counting statistics, helping operator companies to optimise driving route to generate more profit. High-definition monitoring With upgraded Dahua system, the command centre can communicate with every single vehicle of ARST Bus Company in real time, enabling them to deliver instructions to the driver, allowing the driver to report immediately to the command centre in case of an emergency through the panic button, and ensuring the safety of passengers and drivers. The Dahua mobile solution with high-definition monitoring performance reduces theft and robbery on buses, and enables bus companies to collect accurate information about traffic flows and automatically download data to assist efficient and profitable operation. The Dahua mobile solution mounted on board has been proven to be highly efficient and reliable, which were also applied in two other Italian bus companies: AMAT Bus Company in Taranto and AMTAB Bus Company in Bari.
Since the spread of COVID-19 started in Denmark, the Danish government has closed all restaurants, bars and other business areas. In order to comply with the back-to-business policies of the government, Arkaden Food Hall, a popular food court located in Odense, needs to keep the number of guests within a specific limit per square meter – 308 people in their case. Being responsible for their customers and staff, the Food Hall deployed the People Counting and Flow Control Solution from Dahua Technology, to ensure a smooth and safe reopening after the pandemic. People count solution With 14 food stalls and 2 bars, the Food Hall has two entrances. The people count from these two entrances needs to be combined and displayed on screens to determine if there is any more room for customers to enter or will have to temporarily wait at the door. The solution consists of: 2 Entrances with 5 Series IPC (HDW5442E-ZE) 2 DPB18-AI 2 DHL32-F600 1 DSS Pro License 64 Channels + BI Module People counting and flow control The Dahua AI-powered people counting camera can automatically and accurately calculate the real-time number of people entering the restaurant, avoiding congestion and helping to mitigate the spread of the pandemic. The DSS PRO platform with People Counting and Flow Control, together with monitors and DPB18A helps send different videos/pictures and editable content for guests to see. When the number of guests exceeds the set value, the platform and monitors will notify and display ‘the limit is reached’ on the digital signage at the entrance of the Food Hall, reminding incoming customers to wait at the door. In addition, the people counting cameras are simple and easy to install, which allowed the installer to complete the entire project in just 1 day. Enhancing the safety level The People Counting solution has given us statistics and data about the behaviour of our customers" “The People Counting solution has given us statistics and data about the behaviour of our customers, which saves us a lot of resources since we do not have to physically count the number customers at the door. Furthermore, we can provide them with important information at the entrance using the monitors. We are very happy with our cooperation.” “There seem to be lots of innovative solutions out there that we would be more than happy to try out since we feel this will benefit us to be smarter and more efficient in many ways,” said Sanne Brigsted, Business Development Manager of the Food Hall. Faced with the impact of COVID-19, the Dahua People Counting and Flow Control Solution enhances the safety level and competitiveness of business establishments like Arkaden Food Hall, while creating a comfortable dining environment for their guests. Restaurant management efficiency Most importantly, it has helped the restaurant to successfully achieve its primary task of reopening its food hall by allowing an operator to monitor the customer traffic in real time so that timely security measures can be taken before the place becomes packed with customers. With this smart system, no additional employees are needed to count customers manually at the door, which can significantly reduce labour costs and improve restaurant management efficiency. Moreover, its monitor can serve as a notice board to inform customers or as a multi-purpose advertising screen with event marketing and planning based on the DSS Pro's intelligent data analysis, providing a platform with huge expansion potential and creating business opportunities for the restaurant.
Paxton Access Ltd. (Paxton) has announced new additions to their renowned Net2 access control product line, helping installers make their customers’ buildings more COVID-secure. The latest version of Net2 – v6.04 has been in rapid development since May 2020 and is now ready for installers to download. Net2 – v6.04 The latest version features Net2 Occupancy Management, which allows enterprises to limit the number of people in any given area, either barring access or sending an email or text to the building manager when a space nears capacity. It works across multiple areas of a site and can be set to operate a one-in, one-out system to support social distancing measures. In addition to this update, installers who want to use thermal scanning to help limit the spread of the virus can do so with three new thermal scan integrations. Making buildings more COVID-secure We understand the important part that access control plays in managing the flow of people around a building" Adam Stroud, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) at Paxton Access Ltd. stated, "We understand the important part that access control plays in managing the flow of people around a building in order to support a hygienic environment. In addition, controlling the density of people in any given area is a valuable tool to help businesses of all types to become 'COVID-secure'." Adam adds, “Net2 is one of the best-selling access control systems and so we have developed the new Occupancy Management feature to meet this specific need. For new and existing Net2 customers we hope that this new functionality helps the efforts that we are all making to observe social distancing and keep people safe." Occupancy Management with Net2 v6.04: Ensure users maintain a safe social distance by setting and controlling the maximum number of people in any given area. Real-time visual reports - see live occupancy levels in a clear, web-based visual report from smartphone, tablet, PC or widescreen wall display. Dynamic control of entry permissions - set alerts and prevent user access when maximum capacity is neared or reached. Simplified area management - set and manage multiple areas simultaneously, with specific occupancy levels per area. Support continuous flow of people movement with one-in-one-out user access when people numbers are high. Thermal scan hardware Paxton has also tested a range of thermal scan hardware and the company’s free 45-minute webinars will take installers through what is available and how to apply it. Paxton references solutions from Hikvision - Face Recognition Terminal (Minmoe), Dahua Technology - Thermal Temperature Station and ZKTeco – SpeedFace to help ensure health and wellbeing in high security areas and identify people that could be at risk, quickly. Net2 integrations with Hikvision, Dahua, and ZKTeco solutions Paxton has validated Net2 integrations with Hikvision, Dahua, and ZKTeco Paxton has validated Net2 integrations with Hikvision, Dahua, and ZKTeco. However, Net2 can work with most thermal devices that utilise a Wiegand output. Paxton has been running their ‘Guide to COVID-secure Buildings’ webinars to help get the U.S. back to work safely. Installers receive a live 45-minute webinar that will take them through the CDC and OSHA guidelines, as well as a free end-user guide to help their customers understand the access control solutions available when updating their buildings. ‘Guide to COVID-secure Buildings’ webinars Gareth O’Hara, the Chief Sales Officer at Paxton Access Ltd. said, “We’ve had a great response from customers so far, with hundreds joining us in the first couple of weeks. The webinar provides installers with practical access control solutions that businesses need now.” He adds, “The new Occupancy Management feature in Net2 has been eagerly anticipated and we are looking forward to getting it out there to help with social distancing on sites around the world. We are continuing to develop Net2 in line with installer feedback to provide even more flexibility for COVID-secure buildings, so watch this space.” Paxton’s latest webinar, the Guide to COVID-secure Buildings with Net2 started on June 30 and runs twice weekly.
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