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In 2017, DITEK saw how power surges from the many natural disasters that took place damaged many businesses. In a natural disaster, or even everyday business operations, a facility’s entire investment in security, life safety and surveillance systems technology can be disabled or rendered useless in a few seconds. Surge protection solutions can mitigate those risks and protect security investments. Proactive approach to risk mitigation Throughout 2017, we also witnessed a change in how enterprises view surge protection, which included how investments are being made in surge protection to protect valuable security, life safety and surveillance systems, while also reducing downtime, manpower costs, liability vulnerabilities, and possibly compliance issues that can force businesses to actually cease operations. Effective security management is about mitigating risks. But risks cannot be mitigated without a proactive approach. Enterprises and integrators, who take the time to assess risk and to develop a strategy to incorporate effective detection, deter and response criteria to protect physical assets will be successful in 2018. 2018 and beyond That strategy includes designing surge protection into new security systems, while also adding surge protection to existing systems. Enterprises and security integrators who implement a surge protection strategy during security planning processes – or after – will be exercising prevention and mitigation, and they will be successful in 2018 and beyond. Surge protection devices have an untapped potential for enterprise surveillance and security systems In 2017, Ditek continued to offer security end users a solid surge protection solution. We also successfully educated system integrators, who are seeking value-added products or services to incorporate into their portfolios, on the importance of surge protection devices. Educating security integrators We believe that surge protection devices have an untapped potential for enterprise video surveillance and security systems, because they can and do meet safety and security challenges that have been rarely identified in the past. We are looking forward to 2018, when we will continue to develop new surge protection products – including a new product engineered to protect up to twelve individual fuel dispensers, which is critical to the financial operation of convenience stores. We will also continue to educate security integrators about the importance of including surge protection in the design/build RFP, to not only secure an enterprise’s valuable security equipment, but also to help integrators to differentiate their capabilities and knowledge from the competition.
Technology is changing the look and function of today’s security control rooms. Old-school CRT (cathode-ray tube) monitors are giving way to the thinner, flat screen monitors in the control room environment, but the transition is gradual. Randy Smith of Winsted still sees many control rooms that need to make the conversion, which is a boon to his company’s business. Furniture today is designed differently to accommodate the thinner monitors, often with larger screens. Need for integrated rack systems With the increase of IP-based systems comes the need for integrated rack systems that include advanced functionality such as cable management, adds Jim Coleman, National Sales Manager, AFC Industries. Server rooms are environmentally controlled by cooling systems and power systems monitored on the IP network. Low-profile flat screens allow centres to utilise space vertically, thus creating a smaller footprint for the consoles. Additionally, with IP-based systems, workstations will have a smaller footprint because there is less cumbersome equipment. In most cases the servers are stored in a secured, climate controlled environment to eliminate overheating of the servers and maintain their security, says Coleman. This environment also helps with cable and power management. AFC builds technical furniture racks that adhere to the precise needs of computer network server room operators. The company designs and fabricates LAN workbenches with versatile functionalities, and server room workstation racks that are scalable. There is a complete line of IT workbenches, IT computer racks and computer server rack mounts with flexible mounting options. In most cases the servers are stored in a secured, climate controlled environment to eliminate overheating of the servers and maintain their security Flexible control room designs Matko Papic, Chief Technology Officer of Evans Consoles, says the transition from bulky CRT equipment to flat-screen (lower profile) monitors was a major disruption in control room design; it changed the whole dynamic. Another evolution is the use of IP video streaming, which allows more flexibility in manipulation of audio-video content, and requires more flexible control room designs. Another shift, driven by larger, higher-definition monitors, is a shift to fewer monitors that display more information. Instead of a smaller monitor for each information stream, larger monitors now consolidate that information into “dashboard” displays. Looking ahead, control rooms will need to be more flexible, both in the initial design and the ability to adapt to changing technology, says Papic. Legacy customers who are currently using PCs may be moving to more remote applications. Sit-stand equipment will continue to be increasingly prevalent. “There will be more emphasis on flexibility, technology integration, and the ability to change over the life of the system,” says Papic. Consolidation of multiple operations into a single system A trend in security is consolidation of multiple physical operations into a single system, says Papic. As a result, more customers are taking more interest in alarm management and situational awareness. How is the technology being used in terms of alarm triggers? How can the systems react rapidly and provide information to a larger audience in the control room? These questions impact how control rooms are designed, and Evans Consoles can adapt lessons learned from other markets to these trends in the security arena. Greater use of technology is inevitable, says Coleman of AFC Industries. “It is virtually impossible for humans to monitor all security data at the street level in our cities,” he says. “As computers become more powerful and their programs more all-encompassing, we will see a greater shift to robotic and technology uses that will provide enhanced monitoring capabilities and safety Read our Control Rooms series here
The security industry will continue to see consolidation through acquisition in 2017. At the advent of IP camera adoption, we saw a great decline in large vertically integrated companies, which spurred a new era of innovation within smaller IP camera manufacturers, VMS providers and other hardware companies for storage and managed switches. We are now living in a new era of consolidation that is taking us full-circle back to vertical integration. Ultimately, the industry as a whole suffers because this consolidation will stifle innovation until the next big technology disruption takes shape. Interoperability across different verticals This time last year, we noted that the marketplace was moving toward converged technologies and the need for alarm management across multiple platforms into a common interface, turned out to be a popular request. If anything, we are only seeing just the beginning phases of this transition. The biggest surprise is that interoperability is not only confined to security technology, but also extends to parallel systems such as building automation, safety and environmental controls, and even Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) software. Using Video Event Management Software (VEMS) alongside these intelligent platforms proves to be a valuable verification process for many new and exciting vertical markets. Arteco plans to continue the revenue growth and brand awareness achieved in 2016 Event-based video security software At Arteco, our highest growth sectors tend to be slightly insulated from economic fluctuation in the sense that we focus on securing critical infrastructure (electrical utilities and communications) as well as corporate and education campuses. Unfortunately, the continued growth in active shooter incidents have made physical security concerns top of mind for many organisations regardless of economic impact. The unexpected repercussions are that many new security technologies are emerging that cater to real-time event notification on both the macro and micro level. The exciting part of this trend is that users are leveraging a layered approach with multiple autonomous applications working together toward a common goal to improve security, which will hopefully ensure a high level of protection. Business growth and challenges Business has continued to grow year-over-year, and 2016 was a huge step forward for Arteco not only in terms of revenue growth, but also increased brand awareness in the United States and abroad. Our biggest challenge continues to be the crowded VMS market, which is filled with lower cost or even free substitute products. We are making great strides in overcoming this challenge by having a wonderful team of people, both on the technical and sales side of the organisation, who are focused on finding new and innovative ways to advance intuitive, open and affordable event-based and intelligent video security software into 2017. See the full coverage of 2016/2017 Review and Forecast articles here
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?
FLIR Systems, Inc. has announced the releases of the new FLIR K1 handheld thermal imaging camera, available for purchase in the EMEA region. Touted to be FLIR’s most affordable camera for first responder officers and fire investigators, the FLIR K1 detects heat and provides visibility through smoke and in total darkness. It provides enhanced situational awareness for use in wildland fire control, search and rescue missions, structure damage evaluation, and investigative work. K1 thermal imaging camera The dual sensor FLIR K1 is powered by the FLIR Lepton thermal micro-camera “FLIR is committed to providing first responders with lifesaving technology and solutions that help them keep their communities safe,” said Jim Cannon, President and CEO of FLIR Systems. “At a more affordable price, the FLIR K1 will allow more emergency service professionals to adopt the power of thermal imaging and ensure a safer mission.” The dual sensor FLIR K1 is powered by the FLIR Lepton thermal micro-camera, FLIR’s smallest and lowest cost thermal camera core. The K1 uses FLIR’s patented MSX technology, which extracts high-contrast details from the images taken by an onboard visible light camera and superimposes them onto the thermal images. Patented MSX technology The FLIR K1 simultaneously captures thermal and visible images of a scene and stores up to 10,000 image sets to create post-scene reports, analysis and evidence. A pistol grip design allows users to view the scene from their line of sight for improved safety and situational awareness. The spot thermometer easily identifies unseen hot and cold spots for instant troubleshooting. The FLIR K1 carries an IP67 rating for water resistance, heat resistance up to 115°C, and can withstand a 2-metre drop onto concrete. An integrated, rechargeable battery lasts up to five hours on a single charge, and it also includes a 300-lumen flashlight that lends additional visibility of a scene. The FLIR K1 is now available for purchase in EMEA at a cost of 580 EUR and 521 GBP, excluding VAT.
As prominent in Belfast’s history as its cranes are on the city’s skyline, it’s hard to imagine Belfast without Harland and Wolff. Once the world’s greatest shipbuilder, Harland and Wolff today has evolved into a company that provides over 150 years of engineering excellence to the maritime, offshore, and renewable energy sectors. The Harland and Wolff facilities on Queen’s Island are now used to maintain some of the world’s largest ocean-going vessels, ranging from offshore platforms and cruise liners to offshore wind farms. The company is spread over two sites in Belfast and covers over 200 acres. Its main facility has a public-facing perimeter of no less than 1.5 kilometers. With safety as a primary consideration in the execution of projects, the company goes to great lengths to protect its investments from unwanted visitors, intruders, and vandalism. FLIR VMS solution For over 15 years, Harland and Wolff has been using FLIR’s United VMS to manage a wide variety of security cameras For over 15 years, Harland and Wolff has been using FLIR’s United Video Management System (VMS) to manage a wide variety of security cameras. As technology innovations and features were being added onto the United VMS over the years, Harland and Wolff has always remained loyal to the FLIR brand. But with the increasing development of Queen's Island as an industrial, commercial, and tourist area came a greater public presence and an increased safety and security threat. That is why in recent years Harland and Wolff has been continuously investing in the latest security camera technology from FLIR, including enterprise security cameras, PTZ cameras, intelligent thermal cameras, and mobile and wearable cameras. Optical and thermal cameras “Today, over 140 FLIR cameras on-site and along the site’s perimeter make sure that we can detect any irregularity,” said Chris Neill, security operations manager at Harland and Wolff. “Whenever one of our cameras picks up an incident – an intruder for example – an alarm is generated and sent to our security control room, who can then follow up the incident. This ensures us that our investment and that of our customers is safe and secure at all times.” Due to the high impact and risk associated to a possible incident on site, the company’s security department follows a proactive approach for possible intruders. Even in complete darkness, in perimeter areas where there is no additional lighting, thermal analytic cameras can pick up the presence of intruders, animals, or vehicles automatically based on their heat signatures. Intruder detection While thermal camera footage does not allow actual identification of intruders, it can still be used as evidence for insurance companies or law enforcers, especially when an intrusion pattern can be seen over different cameras. United VMS is FLIR’s enterprise-level software solution for video surveillance operations United VMS is FLIR’s enterprise-level software solution for video surveillance operations. The software is currently used at Harland and Wolff by four control room operators and eight managers, all of which have dedicated user rights. One of the strengths of the United VMS system is that it can connect with nearly any security camera on the market and that video streams and detection alerts can be presented on any screen, be it on a video wall, a PC, or a smartphone. United VMS But Harland and Wolff has been using United VMS for far more applications. “We also use the United VMS platform to monitor alarms coming from fire sensors on oil rigs, for example,” said Neill. “Another example is the detection of failed pumps on one of our drydocks. This information also comes in on United VMS, where we generate alarms and notify key staff in real time.” Harland and Wolff has indeed managed to make use of United VMS's flexibility and deploy it for much more than security applications only. "We are not in a static business," said Neill. "At Harland and Wolff, we are always taking on new challenges and solving new problems; FLIR’s United VMS platform helps us do that.” TruWITNESS mobile sensor technology Harland and Wolff will also make use of TruWITNESS, the latest mobile and wearable sensor technology from FLIR. TruWITNESS will allow guards on patrol to stream video directly to the control room in real time and from anywhere on the Harland and Wolff sites. Harland and Wolff needs to comply with a minimum security level imposed by the UK Department of Transport" Guards will be able to bookmark events so that incidents or irregularities can be reported and can be followed up more efficiently. In case of incidents, camera footage from the TruWITNESS wearable devices can be used as evidence. In addition, control room operators will be able to track members of staff via the United VMS and display their location on a map. Security technology advancements “Our yellow gantry cranes have become a national icon,” said Neill. “Unfortunately, this also means that they are an attractive target for political messages or, as in the past, terrorism. As a port facility, Harland and Wolff needs to comply with a minimum security level imposed by the UK Department of Transport. But in reality, we always exceed these requirements. We owe this to our continuous investments in security technology, which we also consider as a commitment to our customers.” Maybe this is what connects Harland and Wolff with FLIR. “As committed as we are to our customers, we expect the same from our suppliers as well,” said Neill. “As someone with a technical background, I have always been convinced of the quality of FLIR security products. But there will always be a time when you need to rely on technical support, and that’s where FLIR really makes a difference.”
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