IndigoVision opens up with SMS4™ release 5 and Camera Gateway™
IndigoVision opens up with SMS4™ release 5 and Camera Gateway™

IndigoVision, leading manufacturer of IP video security solutions, has established itself as one of the most open surveillance systems on the market with the latest release of its SMS4™ software. SMS4™ release 5 includes Camera Gateway™, which allows IP cameras from top manufacturers to be integrated into the IndigoVision SMS4™ system, making it easy to upgrade a client’s existing IP-CCTV system to a quality IndigoVision solution. Camera Gateway™ enables cameras from a range of other manufacturers to be connected to an IndigoVision SMS4™ system using their native protocols and enables users to view the cameras in IndigoVision’s Control Center. The cameras can be controlled, viewed and recorded in the same way as IndigoVision cameras. Camera Gateway™ also supports PTZ control, bookmarking and record-on-motion. Camera Gateway™ is a software service that can be installed on a Windows based server, giving customers total flexibility.  The service enables multiple clients to stream and view video from the same camera. Marcus Kneen, IndigoVision CEO, stated: “Camera Gateway™ is a game-changing product making IndigoVision SMS4™ the open system of choice. Combined with our conformance to the ONVIF standard, and our integration with other software, SMS4™ release 5 establishes IndigoVision as one of the most open IP security solutions on the market.” SMS4™release 5 also includes record-on-motion and bookmarking for IndigoVision’s own cameras and those of supported manufacturers. Record-on-motion allows users to reduce storage by configuring the system to record video only when there is activity, while bookmarking video footage makes it easier to find and review key evidence. Users can upgrade to SMS4™ release 5 through IndigoVision’s Software Upgrade Program (SUP).

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IndigoVision launches a low-cost IP-CCTV video wall
IndigoVision launches a low-cost IP-CCTV video wall

IndigoVision, the leading manufacturer of complete end-to-end IP security solutions, has released Video Wall software that allows professional fully-featured IP-CCTV control room video walls to be built to any size, at a fraction of the cost of other dedicated display products.Based on ‘Control Center', the company's Security Management Software, video walls can be constructed with complete scalability using any PC monitor type (CRT, LCD and plasma), with standard or High Definition wide-screen format. The video wall is driven using slave ‘Control Center' workstations, each of which manages up to 4 monitors. Up to 98 slaves can be controlled over the IP network from an unlimited number of master ‘Control Center' workstations. Each monitor can display up to 25 video panes, allowing video walls with up to 9,800 panes to be constructed.IP Video Wall - IndigoVision complete IP video Ssecurity solutions demoOn large sites multiple video walls can be deployed in different control rooms, all accessing the same video from any camera or Network Video Recorder (NVR), no matter where they are located. This can only be achieved because IndigoVision's architecture is completely distributed.Monitors within the video wall can be used to display a variety of information, including live or recorded video, guard tours, salvos, site maps and alarm status. In addition, information from third-party applications can be displayed, such as the status of access control or building management systems. The video wall is controlled using standard CCTV keyboards connected to any of the master workstations.The video wall supports the ‘Control Center' black screen monitoring mode, where video is only displayed on alarm. This method of operation is recognised as providing a more efficient operator environment that leads to quicker incident response. Using IndigoVision's advanced alarm management features, content and layout of individual monitors in the video wall can be controlled dynamically from the status of alarms and events.

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IndigoVision launches SMS4 r3 for coordination of situation response
IndigoVision launches SMS4 r3 for coordination of situation response

IndigoVision recently released new software to coordinate responses between agencies and operatives with pervasive real time video. The system automatically validates incoming data to verify critical events, escalating video for management of the situation to personnel in other locations and ensuring an appropriate response. Operatives are provided with both real time and recorded video, giving them the ‘eyes and ears everywhere' to optimally assess the situation. IndigoVision's SMS4 release 3 starts with the qualification of incoming data to filter out false alerts so personnel can focus on likely threats. The system also lets you embed prior intelligence by noting the sequence and combination of events that may constitute a situation. Qualified alerts that are not assessed within a certain time period are then automatically passed along a chain of operators, accompanied by real time contextual video, to guarantee a swift response. Events that are identified as priority get automatically escalated to higher levels of authority and/or agencies in other locations. SMS4 release 3 also supports the automatic expansion of the 'threat zone' if the initial situation is not handled within a certain time. For example, if a perimeter breach is not addressed quickly, then nearby buildings are automatically placed into alert. The new analytics added to this latest release allow operators to filter situational data by location, zone or incident criteria to better understand how events unfolded. Automatic scheduling of actions based upon time of day and other criteria can also be developed into ‘routine scenarios', which will receive an automated but intelligent response. Another new feature is the addition of ‘audio forensics', which greatly improves investigators' abilities to locate critical evidence fast. The addition of audible data such as a breaking window to existing video forensics can aid police officers and other emergency personnel to get straight to the action. SMS4 release 3 is the latest evolution of IndigoVision's leading edge security management software.  With enhanced capabilities for managing multi-agency situations through pervasive access to video, SMS4 release 3 empowers its users to greatly increase their response time and accuracy. Existing users can upgrade to SMS4 r3 through IndigoVision's Software Upgrade Program (SUP).

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IndigoVision EPOS Integration
IndigoVision EPOS Integration

IndigoVision has developed a powerful surveillance solution for the retail and hospitality sectors by integrating its IP Video system with Electronic Point of Sale (EPOS).Data sent from an EPOS system can be overlaid on a live video display, allowing operators to view the camera feed and till transaction simultaneously. The transaction information and alarms generated by the EPOS system are also bookmarked and recorded alongside the video. This facilitates visual identification of an incident in both real time and through post-event analysis.Powerful transaction analysis can be undertaken on the stored data, for example, finding out when a particular credit card was used by searching every till in a store or across all stores from the head office. Conversely, recorded video can be searched using a thumbnail feature, which displays a video still image for every transaction, allowing the operator to quickly identify the relevant footage. Evidential quality video clips and associated transaction data can be exported for investigation or use in court. This can be played back using IndigoVision's standalone Incident Player.Alarms generated by the EPOS system, such as ‘till left open', ‘refund', or ‘large note deposit' can automatically trigger a number of events. For example, display the nearest camera view to the specific till and pinpoint the alarm on an interactive map. This creates a more efficient operator environment that leads to quicker incident response. Alarms from non-security systems such as building management and plant monitoring can also easily be integrated into the system and benefit retail applications, for example, alerting staff when a freezer fails or a door is left open."IndigoVision has a strong presence in the retail sector and has deployed surveillance systems with some of the world's best-known retailers such as IKEA, Sears and John Lewis Partnership," said Oliver Vellacott, IndigoVision CEO. "This new development will strengthen that position further and provide stores with an unmatched solution for integrated surveillance."The seamless integration with third-party systems is achieved through integration modules in ‘Control Center', IndigoVision's Security Management Software. In addition to EPOS, the company has integration modules for over 20 different IP-based access control and security systems.

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CCTV software - Expert commentary

The many faces of today's facial recognition technology
The many faces of today's facial recognition technology

The use of facial recognition has become a highly debated topic recently, and has increasingly and misleadingly been criticised by some for being an unethical tool used to spy on the public. The reason for such criticism is however largely due to lack of information and regulation around the technology. Used proportionately and responsibly, facial recognition can and should be a force for good. It has the ability to do a lot more to increase security in the future – from street crime to airport security, all the way through to helping those battling addiction, the technology can take security and operations to new heights. These systems can memorise the faces of persons of interest, networks of gang members, wanted criminals and those suspected of involvement in serious violent crimes The rise in knife crime Knife crime has dominated the headlines in the UK throughout the year. Recent statistics show the number of people being admitted to emergency care due to attacks by a sharp object to be up by nearly 40 per cent from two years ago, whilst the number of children under the age of 18 being admitted to hospitals with stab wounds is up by 86 per cent in only four years. This recent surge in knife crime has put police forces under immense pressure, and the intelligent use of facial recognition has a role to play in enabling more informed stop & search interventions. Currently UK police can stop and search an individual they suspect to be carrying drugs or weapons or both, or they can stop and search a person in a location where there have been or are considered likely to be “incidents involving serious violence.” In both cases they must do so with access to limited information, leaving themselves open to accusations of bias or discrimination. Knife crime dominated the headlines in the UK throughout 2018 Police systems benefiting crime investigations This is where facial recognition can offer up additional intelligence. These systems can memorise the faces of persons of interest, networks of gang members, wanted criminals and those suspected of involvement in serious violent crimes. Furthermore, these systems don’t need prior personal engagement to recognise an individual and see only data, not gender, age or race. Facial recognition thus helps eliminate both weapons and criminals off the streets and potentially prevent crimes before they have a chance to take place. The technology doesn’t take the decision away from the human police officer. However, it does bring greater transparency and context to the decision-making process of whether a stop and search intervention is justified.  Similarly, the advanced technology can recognise and match an individual seen on a CCTV camera at a crime scene to someone the police encounters on the streets some time later, justifying a stop and search on that individual. Its ability to check in real time if a person is on a criminal watchlist adds an extra layer to the decision-making process prior to conducting a stop and search, lowering the likelihood of discrimination. Facial recognition thus helps eliminate both weapons and criminals off the streets and potentially prevent crimes before they have a chance to take place. Gambling addiction and how facial recognition can help There are an estimated 593,000 people in the UK currently battling a gambling problem, making it a serious public health issue in the country. Having understood the gravity of the issue, the UK gambling commission have set limits and advice in place to help those suffering this addiction; yet as with all addictions, gambling is a tough habit to beat. In order to put effective limitations in place and make a real difference, the gambling commission needs the right technology to protect those most vulnerable in the industry.   Facial recognition technology is able to keep track of customers and thus help gambling companies in protecting their customers Facial recognition technology is able to keep track of customers and thus help gambling companies in protecting their customers to a higher degree. Monitoring those entering and moving around gambling areas is an extremely difficult task for human staff to do alone, especially in large crowded areas such as casinos. Facial recognition technology installed around the premises would be able to help the company and the staff to identify people who have registered as gambling addicts, and keep record of their day’s play in order to inform staff if and when it was time for them to stop. It would also be able to ensure effective self-exclusion procedures, by identifying a self-excluded individual via CCTV as soon as they entered the venue to then allow security staff to respectfully escort them out. Utilising facial recognition at airport security Facial recognition has by now become a normal sight at many airports around the world. Several people today hold a so-called biometric passport, which allows them to skip the normally longer queues and instead walk through an automated ePassport control to proceed to the gate faster without having to deal with control officers. Facial recognition used in this way has managed to significantly cut waiting times at the passport control, but it also has the ability to enhance security in and around airports. Facial recognition uses algorithms to match physical characteristics against photos and videos of people's faces Earlier this year, facial recognition technology managed to catch an imposter trying to enter the US at the Washington Dulles Airport. The false passport may have been uncaught by the human eye, yet due to the accuracy of the facial recognition technology it managed to help officers catch the imposter and bring him to justice. Facial recognition thus allows officers to identify an individual faster and more accurately than the human eye. Facial recognition uses algorithms to match physical characteristics against photos and videos of people's faces, which have been collected from visas, passports and other sources.   Facial recognition allows officers to identify an individual faster and more accurately than the human eye At airports the use of facial recognition has proved to both enhance security as well as speed up processes such as check-inWhilst some critics may worry about issues of privacy related to the technology, at airports the use of facial recognition has proved to both enhance security as well as speed up processes such as check-in and, in the future, even boarding proceedings. If used correctly and proportionately, facial recognition can help safeguard the public and improve national security on several fronts. Whilst the many benefits of facial recognition are evident, the lack of regulation and understanding of the technology has led to misconception around how it works and what it is used for. Facial recognition technology can match faces in crowded public places against criminal watch lists, and register faces that match with those on criminal watch lists – whilst ignoring everyone else.

Video technology reimagined with the empowerment of IoT
Video technology reimagined with the empowerment of IoT

It amazes me how in a few short years security systems have gone from simple, dumb cameras witnessing events to intelligent eyes, ears, speech and touch solutions that boost situational awareness far beyond human capabilities. It seems the only senses missing from the equation now are smell and taste. And who knows, someone might be working on those in a lab somewhere right now. But what’s really fascinating to me is how the Internet of Things (IoT) has opened a world of possibilities for transforming security technology into something new yet again. With IoT we’re able to push and pull nuggets of intelligence from sources we never considered before: environmental sensors, pressure plates, door lock timers and much more. It’s helped us break through the constraining mindset that security systems are strictly single-purpose. With interconnectivity at the core, we’re starting to imagine myriad ways to apply these tools to challenges outside the realm of security. Here are just a few examples. Flood management assistance Network camera adds another dimension and timeliness to flood management by helping responders investigate remotely As recent hurricanes and floods have shown, water damage can be devastating to a community. That’s why some municipalities are using their city surveillance cameras in conjunction with water sensor to proactively address the problem. Water sensors collect data from multiple sources such as rain gutters, sewer systems and pump stations, in order to monitor fluctuations in water levels and water quality. If an alert triggers, having a network camera in proximity to visually verify the situation helps responders determine the best course of action. For instance, if multiple water detection sensors trigger alerts simultaneously or sequentially over a large area it’s probably due to natural runoff from recent rainfall. But without eyes on the scene, how can you be sure? Network camera adds another dimension and timeliness to flood management by helping responders investigate and identify the cause of a trigger remotely. It might be a fire hydrant spewing water, a water main break or even a chemical spill. With video streaming live to the command center, staff can remotely inspect the area, determine the cause of the trigger and decide whether remediation is required, thus avoiding the expense of dispatching an investigative crew to a non-event. Some municipalities are using their city surveillance cameras in conjunction with water sensor to proactively address the problem Environmental control assistance Data centers house the lifeblood of a business so it’s no wonder why companies work hard to protect them. We’re all familiar with the integration of network cameras with access control systems to visually verify who is actually using the credentials. Network camera adds another dimension and timeliness to flood management by helping responders investigate and identify the cause of a trigger remotely But there’s another aspect to protecting data centers and that’s environment control. Data centers need to maintain optimum humidity and temperature for the racks of electronics. When environmental sensors in the facility detect out-of-norm ranges technicians can remotely command a network camera to zoom in on the gauges and help them determine whether remediation might be necessary.  Coupling network cameras with other sensors in the data center can provide visual confirmation of other conditions as well. For instance, every time a data rack door-open-close sensor detects an event it can trigger the camera to pan to the location and stream video to security. Some data centers employ weight sensors at the doorway to weigh personnel and equipment as they enter the room and when they exit to ensure no additional hardware is being taken out of the facility or left inside without permission. Any discrepancy would trigger the camera to zoom in for a close-up of the individual’s face and send a visual alert and ID information to security. Roadway management and parking assistance Network cameras have long played a part in city-wide traffic management. Adding video analytics and integration with network sensors, makes those cameras that much smarter and versatile. They can detect cars driving in bike lanes or driving in the wrong direction and capture license plates of offenders. Their ability to detect anomalous traffic flow patterns can be integrated with car counting sensors, networked electronic road signs and traffic light systems to automatically redirect vehicles to alternate routes. They make great, intelligent parking lot attendants, too. Working in conjunction with weight sensors network cameras can count vehicles coming into and leaving a lot or garage and verify when the facility has reached capacity. License plate recognition and video analytics can be used to ascertain that a vehicle entering a reserved parking space doesn’t match the credentials and vehicle attributes in the database. With the addition of noise sensors and audio analytics, network cameras can improve roadway and parking facility safety by detecting and identifying specific sounds – breaking glass, car alarms, gun shots, and aggressive speech – and triggering a visual alert to first responders. Network cameras can improve roadway and parking facility safety by detecting and identifying specific sounds and triggering a visual alert to first responders Shopper experience assistance In the early days of online shopping, e-tailers designed their sites to replicate the in-store customer experience. In an ironic turn of events, today brick-and-mortar stores are trying to mirror the online shopping experience. To do so, they’re turning their security systems into adjunct sales assistance. With network video and audio system automation they can recognise and acknowledge loyal customers with personal greetings. Retailers are applying people counting video analytics to checkout activity to create rules-based consistency in customer service With heatmapping analytics they can measure how much time a customer spends in a specific department or observe how they walk through the aisles of the store. They can track shopping behaviors such as items looked at that made it into the cart or didn’t, or whether a customer actually checked out or left the merchandise behind. By capturing these shopping patterns and trends retailers can shape a more positive, more profitable customer shopping experience. For instance, integrating video analytics with point of sale systems and RFID sensors on merchandise tags can result in timely alerts to sales associates to recommend additional merchandise. This is a case of emulating how e-tailers let the customer know that other customers who bought X often also purchased items Y and Z. Or to avoid disappointing customers due to stock outages, retailers are linking weight sensors and video analytics to make sure their shelves are well-stocked and if not, quickly alert associates to what items need to be restocked. Capturing business intelligence Retailers are also using video cameras to monitor checkout queues and trigger automated announcements over the public-address system, closed system such as smartphones or other wireless communications devices that checkers are needed rather wait for a person to call for backup. IoT laid the groundwork for network security solutions to seamlessly integrate with other IP-based technologies, sensors and programs They’re applying people counting video analytics to checkout activity to create rules-based consistency in customer service. While retailers will always use their surveillance camera for loss prevention, they’re finding that integrating traditional technology in new ways can yield even bigger returns. Linking network video surveillance, video analytics, network communications system and sensors with point-of-sale systems and customer loyalty databases, retailers are capturing the business intelligence they need to get back in the game and make brick-and-mortar a greater overall experience than online shopping. A natural cross-over technology This trend towards integration has forever changed how organisations view their investment in security technology. The intelligence and versatility of a tool that can see, verify and analyse what’s happening in real-time is spurring users to tap its cross-over potential for a host of other tasks that could benefit from more astute situational awareness – everything from manufacturing and equipment maintenance to logistics, inventory control and beyond. IoT laid the groundwork for network security solutions to seamlessly integrate with other IP-based technologies, sensors and programs. How we capitalise on that connection is only limited by our imagination.

Watching trends in real-time: SourceSecurity's top 10 click-worthy articles posted in 2018
Watching trends in real-time: SourceSecurity's top 10 click-worthy articles posted in 2018

Timely and important issues in the security marketplace dominated our list of most-clicked-upon articles in 2018. Looking back at the top articles of the year provides a decent summary of how our industry evolved this year, and even offers clues to where we’re headed in 2019. In the world of digital publishing, it’s easy to know what content resonates with the security market: Our readers tell us with their actions; i.e., where they click. Let’s look back at the Top 10 articles we posted in 2018 that generated the most page views. They are listed in order here with a brief excerpt. 1. U.S. President Signs Government Ban on Hikvision and Dahua Video Surveillance The ban on government uses, which takes effect ‘not later than one year after … enactment,’ applies not only to future uses of Dahua and Hikvision equipment but also to legacy installations. The bill calls for an assessment of the current presence of the banned technologies and development of a ‘phase-out plan’ to eliminate the equipment from government uses. 2. Motorola Makes a Splash with Avigilon Video Surveillance Acquisition Early clues point to Motorola positioning Avigilon as part of a broader solution, especially in the municipal/safe cities market. The company says the acquisition will enable more safe cities projects and more public-private partnerships between local communities and law enforcement. Motorola sees Avigilon as ‘a natural extension to global public safety and U.S. federal and military’ applications, according to the company. 3. Impact of Data-Driven Smart Cities on Video Surveillance One of the major areas of technology that is going to shift how we interact with our cities is the Internet of Things (IoT). One benefit will be the ability to use video surveillance to analyse data on large crowds at sporting events The IoT already accounts for swaths of technology and devices operating in the background. However, we’re increasingly seeing these come to the forefront of everyday life, as data becomes increasingly critical. Bosch is highlighting its “Simply. Connected” portfolio of smart city technology to transform security as well as urban mobility, air quality and energy efficiency 4. CES 2018: Security Technologies Influencing the Consumer Electronics Market Familiar players at security shows also have a presence at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES). For example, Bosch is highlighting its “Simply. Connected” portfolio of smart city technology to transform security as well as urban mobility, air quality and energy efficiency. Many consumer technologies on display offer a glimpse of what’s ahead for security. Are Panasonic’s 4K OLEDs with HDR10+ format or Sony’s A8F OLED televisions a preview of the future of security control room monitors? 5. SIA Predicts Top Physical Security Trends for 2018 Traditional security providers will focus more on deepening the customer experience and enhancing convenience and service. The rise of IoT also places an emphasis on cybersecurity, and security dealers will react by seeking manufacturers and technology partners with cyber-hardened network-connected devices. 6. High-Speed Visitor Screening Systems Will Improve Soft Target Security The system is more expensive than a metal detector, but about a third the cost of familiar airport body scanners. Labor reduction (because of faster throughput) can help offset the system costs, but “it’s difficult to quantify the improvement in the visitor experience,” says Mike Ellenbogen, CEO of Evolv Technology. 7. How to Prevent ATM Jackpotting with Physical and Cyber Security A new crime wave is hitting automated teller machines (ATMs); the common banking appliances are being rigged to spit out their entire cash supplies into a criminal’s waiting hands. The crime is called “ATM jackpotting” and has targeted banking machines located in grocery shops, pharmacies and other locations in Taiwan, Europe, Latin America and, in the last several months, the United States. Rough estimates place the total amount of global losses at up to $60 million. The safety and security world bring a complex problem to solve- how to pick out a face in a moving and changing environment and compare it to several faces of interest 8. Why We Need to Look Beyond Technology for Smart City Security Solutions Although technology is necessary for an urban area to transition in to a safe and smart city, technology alone isn’t sufficient. Truly smart cities are savvy cities and that includes how they employ software, sensing, communications and other technologies to meet their needs. 9. How New Video Surveillance Technology Boosts Airport Security and Operations Employing airport security solutions is a complex situation with myriad government, state and local rules and regulations that need to be addressed while ensuring the comfort needs of passengers. Airport security is further challenged with improving and increasing operational efficiencies, as budgets are always an issue. As an example, security and operational data must be easily shared with other airport departments and local agencies such as police, customs, emergency response and airport operations to drive a more proactive approach across the organisation. 10. The Evolution of Facial Recognition from Body-Cams to Video Surveillance The safety and security world bring a complex problem to solve how to pick out a face in a moving and changing environment and compare it to several faces of interest. “One-to-many” facial recognition is a much harder problem to solve.