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7 steps to make VMS system design and installation easier
7 steps to make VMS system design and installation easier

For those of you old enough to remember, video matrix switchers were once the heyday of surveillance camera control. These cumbersome antiques were at the heart of every major video surveillance system (CCTV at the time) in premier gaming properties, government installations and corporate industrial complexes. They required more physical labour to construct and configure than perhaps the pyramids – maybe not – but you get the picture. And then digital video made its way in to the market and everything changed, transforming the physical demands for camera control and management from a hardware-centric to a software driven process. We’ve come a long way in a few short years, and the borders that once defined IT and security continue to diminish, if not disappear completely There’s no doubt that this migration also presented significant challenges as many security professionals often struggled with all things IT and software programming being one of the industry’s soft spots. Fortunately, we’ve come a long way in a few short years, and the borders that once defined IT and security continue to diminish, if not disappear completely. However, the complexities of today’s VMS functionality can be intimidating for anyone tasked with installing one of these systems given all of the user-defined options available from the simplest camera sequencing and bandwidth allocations to mobile management and enterprise level integration. This is where truly advanced VMS solutions need to shine on both the operations and the design/build sides of the equation. Smart VMS design There are more solutions products labelled “VMS solutions” out there than ever before. The issue is the fact that many of these “solutions” really don’t fall into the category of a true VMS by today’s standards but offer basic camera and NVR control. No doubt that there is a place for such software programs in the market. However, VMS solutions from the likes of OnSSI and other industry-leading companies offer distinct and superior management and control capabilities for demanding security and business intelligence applications. Perhaps of equal importance, these top-tier VMS solutions incorporate provisions for installers, so they have a clear and easier implementation path. OnSSI offers VMS solutions with smart camera drivers Here are seven attributes that can assist with the design and implementation of an advanced VMS solution: 1) Open architecture platform We need the ability to easily integrate with other systems and scale for future developments and physical system growth The ability to easily integrate with other systems and scale for future developments and physical system growth is largely dependent on a systems platform architecture. Here’s where VMS solutions with open architecture provide a distinct advantage. Open-architecture solutions expand functionality by facilitating greater integration between multiple systems and components. This not only makes VMS solutions with open architecture easier to implement, it makes them extremely cost-efficient by eliminating the need for proprietary solutions. Open architecture systems also provide adherence to industry standards such as ONVIF and PSIA, as well as compression formats such as H.265 and MJPEG, and help ensure system integration and support of an extensive range of manufacturers’ cameras and off-the-shelf hardware. Be wary of VMS solutions with limited camera manufacturer support. 2) Simple licensing processes and pricing Camera licenses and pricing is always a touchy subject, as any misunderstanding of a specific VMS solutions’ licensing terms can prove to be costly after the fact. And it often seems that some VMS suppliers have gone to great lengths to complicate the process as to obscure actual Total Cost of Ownership (TCO). Perhaps the most direct, simple and straightforward camera licensing and pricing method is to have one license per IP address used by each camera/encoder on multi-channel devices. These should be perpetual licenses with no required annual fees or subscriptions. Additionally, the licensing agreement should be all inclusive without added fees for multiple clients, failover servers, active directory support, I/O devices, redundant management servers, technical support or security patches and updates. 3) Mixing and matching camera license types The ability to mix and match different camera license types within the same system helps facilitate a seamless and simple migration of new and pre-existing systems with minimal downtime or interruption in operation. The ability to mix and match camera licenses not only saves valuable design and installation time, it can provide considerable savings when integrating large, multi-tenant systems. Mix and match capabilities also allow system designers to apply specific feature sets to specific groups of cameras to best leverage functionality and budgets, as well as providing the flexibility to implement an on-site, virtual, or cloud-based VMS solution, without any additional cost. 4) Auto camera detection and configuration Another VMS set-up feature that eases the install process is the ability to forego device registrations or MAC address requirements Another VMS set-up feature that eases the install process is the ability to forego device registrations or MAC address requirements. This functionality allows installers to instantly locate cameras on the network and configure them centrally so they can easily replace older cameras while seamlessly retaining video recorded from them. The auto detection capability should also include the ability to detect and import CSV files, which can then be stored and used to configure camera templates for future camera installation profiles. 5) Smart camera driver technology VMS solutions with smart camera drivers offer valuable assistance during system implementation, and any time new cameras are added to the network or replace older models. Manufacturer-specific smart camera drivers expand the range of model-specific static drivers. Instead of storing the device’s information (codecs, resolutions, frame rates, etc.) statically, a VMS with smart camera drivers queries devices for their capabilities using the manufacturers’ proprietary protocol. All that is required for configuration is that the camera is available on the network. Smart camera drivers eliminate the need to wait for model-specific drivers or installation of driver packs, allowing for newly released cameras to be used immediately. Network security is an area where leading VMS suppliers like OnSSI have ramped up development efforts to stay ahead of hackers  6) Importance of network security Network Security is perhaps the greatest challenge faced by industry professionals today Network security is perhaps the greatest challenge faced by industry professionals today. This is an area where leading VMS suppliers like OnSSI have ramped up development efforts to stay ahead of hackers. New security developments to look for include TLS 1.2 encryption protocols for camera-to-server communications (SSL 3.0 supported for older cameras), as well as server-to-server communications. Additional safeguards to consider include: randomised video databases with no camera identification information to secure recorded data; support for Active Directory authentication; AES encryption between servers and clients; and AES encrypted exporting. 7) Automatic updates Regardless of the supplier you select for your VMS solution, they should be consistently providing new updates and security patches on a frequent if not regular basis. Keeping up with these updates can be a burden and are often overlooked leading to system failures and breeches. Advanced VMS solutions now feature automatic update service checks on a system-wide basis, eliminating the need to manually update individual servers and devices. This ensures that your VMS system always has the latest drivers, fixes and updates which assures overall security while reducing TCO. So next time you’re getting a demo of the latest and greatest VMS solution, remember to ask what it offers in terms of design and implementation tools. Half the battle with new technologies is getting them installed and working properly. Without the right tools to accomplish these critical first steps, all the functionality in the world will do you little good.

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.

Top ten security industry mergers and acquisitions of 2018
Top ten security industry mergers and acquisitions of 2018

Consolidation persisted in the physical security industry in 2018, and big companies such as Motorola, Canon and UTC continued to make moves. Also among the mergers and acquisitions (M&A) news in 2018 was a high-profile bankruptcy (that ended well), continuing consolidation in the integrator market, and the creation of a new entity called “LenelS2.” Here’s a look at the Top 10 M&A stories in 2018: 1. Motorola acquires Avigilon Motorola Solutions announced in February that it had entered into a definitive agreement to acquire video surveillance provider Avigilon in an all-cash transaction that enhances Motorola Solutions’ portfolio of mission-critical communications technologies. Avigilon products are used by a range of commercial and government customers including critical infrastructure, airports, government facilities, public venues, healthcare centers and retail. The company holds more than 750 U.S. and international patents. 2. UTC Climate, Control & Security buys S2 Security UTC Climate, Controls & Security agreed in September to acquire S2 Security, a developer of unified security and video management solutions. UTC subsequently combined S2 with its Lenel brand to create LenelS2, “a global leader in advanced access control systems and services” with “complementary strengths.” 3. Costar Technologies acquires Arecont Vision after bankruptcy Arecont Vision, the provider of IP-based megapixel camera and video surveillance solutions, announced in July that the acquisition by Costar Technologies, Inc. of its assets had been approved by the bankruptcy court. After the closing of the sale, the company began operating as Arecont Vision Costar, LLC and is part of Costar, a U.S. corporation that designs, develops, manufactures, and distributes a range of products for the video surveillance and machine vision markets. 4. Allegion acquires access control company ISONAS Allegion plc, a security products and solutions provider, agreed in June to acquire ISONAS through one of its subsidiaries. ISONAS’ edge-computing technology provides access control solutions for non-residential markets. ISONAS' devices – like its integrated reader-controllers – utilise power over ethernet, making them easy to install and cost effective as they utilise existing customer infrastructures. The company is based in Boulder, Colo. 5. HID buys Crossmatch for Biometrics HID Global announced that it had acquired Crossmatch, a provider of biometric identity management and secure authentication solutions, from Francisco Partners. Crossmatch’s portfolio of products includes biometric identity management hardware and software that complement HID’s broad portfolio of trusted identity products and services. 6. BriefCam announces acquisition by Canon BriefCam, a global provider of video synopsis and deep learning solutions, announced its acquisition in May by Canon Inc., a global digital imaging solutions company. The addition of BriefCam to Canon’s network video solutions products portfolio complements the Canon Group’s previous acquisitions of Axis Communications and Milestone Systems. 7. Allied Universal acquires U.S. Security Associates Allied Universal, a security and facility services company, finalised its acquisition of U.S. Security Associates (USSA) in October, further building on its position in the security services industry. This acquisition includes Andrews International (including its Government Services Division and Consulting and Investigations and International Division) and Staff Pro. 8. Johnson Controls acquires Smartvue Corp. Johnson Controls announced in April that it had acquired Smartvue, a global IoT and video provider that empowers cloud video surveillance and IoT video services. The addition of the Smartvue cloud-based video platform will enhance Johnson Controls’ offering of an end-to-end, smart cloud-based solution that can provide superior business data and intelligence to customers and added value to partners. 9. ADT acquires Red Hawk Fire & Security (and others) ADT Inc.’s acquisition of Red Hawk Fire & Security, Boca Raton, Fla., was the latest move in ADT Commercial’s strategy to buy up security integrator firms around the country and grow their footprint. In addition to the Red Hawk acquisition, announced in mid-October, ADT has acquired more than a half-dozen security system integration firms in the last year or so. 10. Convergint Technologies continues to acquire Convergint Technologies announced in August the acquisition of New Jersey-based Access Control Technologies (ACT), bringing further electronic security systems experience to Convergint's service capabilities. Convergint has strategically grown its service footprint across the United States, Canada, Europe and Asia Pacific through strong organic growth and the completion of 18 acquisitions since early 2016. And it continues: Convergint announced acquisition of SI Technologies, Albany, N.Y., in November and Firstline Security Integration (FSI), Anaheim, Calif., in December. (And Convergint itself was acquired in February by private equity group Ares Management.)

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IFSEC 2015 celebrates another hugely successful year
IFSEC 2015 celebrates another hugely successful year

IFSEC welcomed 23,079 visitors through the doors, increasing attendance by 2% from 2014, driven by UK attendees IFSEC International 2015, organised by UBM EMEA, is pleased to announce another hugely successful year for Europe’s largest security event. Running from 16-18 June at ExCeL London, IFSEC International welcomed 23,079 visitors through the doors, increasing attendance by 2% from 2014, driven by UK attendees. Attracted an additional visitors IFSEC International benefitted from the co-located events within the Protection & Management Series, attracting an additional 4,536 visitors1 from across the venue. This highlights the power of these show’s being located alongside each other, demonstrating that it is the go-to place for sourcing the latest products and innovations, as well as, discovering expertise across security, fire, facilities, and safety. The show continued to attract the senior decision makers from across the industry with a 14% increase in end-users and a 42% increase in directors and company holders, demonstrating the quality of visitors remains at an all time high. Video Surveillance, Access Control and Integrated Security remain significant areas of interest, while the ever increasing topic of Safe Cities, which was reflected by the education available on the show floor, and IT & Cyber Security received more attention than ever before. "The atmosphere on the show floor was fantastic with plenty of innovation and industry expertise on display" As the industry becomes increasingly globalised, IFSEC International remains a truly global event as represented by 33% of total attendees from 112 countries, along with exhibitors coming from 45 countries. For the second year the UKTI Events Alliance worked with the British Security Industry Association (BSIA) to bring inward missions of Commercial Officers and relevant buyers from target countries to meet with UK based organisations at IFSEC International. Exceeded all expectations for 2015 Gerry Dunphy, Event Director for IFSEC & FIREX International, said: “IFSEC International once again exceeded all expectations for 2015; the atmosphere on the show floor was fantastic with plenty of innovation and industry expertise on display across the three days. We have had a great response from both our visitors and exhibitors and we look forward to returning to London in 2016 to continue to be the industry leading event showcasing the latest security technologies from across the globe.” Exhibitors to the show were equally enthusiastic about IFSEC International, TDSi one of the UK’s leading suppliers of integrated access control systems reported a 25% year-on-year rise in export market visitors to its stand this year. “IFSEC International is a great barometer of the state of the security industry and it was obvious that the market has become truly globalised, with a sizeable increase in visitors travelling from other regions to see the latest and best the security industry has to offer,” said John Davies, Managing Director, TDSi. “IFSEC International is a great barometer of the state of the security industry" Highlight at IFSEC Additional highlights at IFSEC International this year included the launch of the Inspirational Speaker Series which attracted large crowds from across the security, safety, fire, facilities management and service management industries to the 400 capacity theatre each day. Kicking off with Baroness Karren Brady on the first day, followed by Sir Ranulph Fiennes on the second day and finishing with Sir Chris Hoy on the final day, each speaker took to the stage to share anecdotes from their own illustrious careers and offer some invaluable advice on leadership and achieving success in any field. Another new launch for IFSEC International in 2015 was the Benchmark Innovation Arena which welcomed over 40 finalists for the annual industry awards, a series of 10 minute pitches and short Q&A sessions were hosted by leading companies including Bosch Security, Vidicore, UTC Fire & Security and Secure Logiq, to name a few. This exciting new format provided visitors to IFSEC International with a detailed look at these new products that are delivering a real benefit to end users, integrators and installers. IFSEC International 2016 takes place from 21st-23rd June at ExCeL London.

IFSEC 2015 keeps security industry abreast with latest technologies & developments
IFSEC 2015 keeps security industry abreast with latest technologies & developments

IFSEC International will launch a brand new zone within the show - Innovation Arena 2015 has already seen major incidences that have tested the security industry across the globe and as threats continue to evolve IFSEC Internationalhas a crucial part to play in keeping the industry abreast of the latest technologies, developments and best practices. Taking place at ExCeL London IFSEC International 2015 will run from 16-18 June. IFSEC International has been at the heart of the security industry for over 40 years and this year it will continue to showcase the future of the industry alongside truly groundbreaking content. Core theme - innovation A core theme running across IFSEC International this year is innovation, having conducted a significant amount of research following the 2014 edition of the show, a key topic that both exhibitors and visitors kept coming back to was the opportunity to see genuine innovation across the show floor. With this in mind IFSEC International will launch a brand new zone within the show this June, the Innovation Arena in association with leading industry title, Benchmark Magazine. The new theatre will host a series of 10 minute pitches from the Benchmark Innovation Awards finalists. With nearly 40 different companies already confirmed to participate, covering site protection hardware and software, business intelligence, video surveillance hardware and software, video analytics, infrastructure along with access control hardware and software, the Innovation Arena will showcase back to back innovation from across the industry throughout the three days. Short presentation from well-known organisations Organisations such as Panasonic, Bosch Security, Vidicore, UTC Fire & Security and Secure Logiq, to name a few will give a short presentation about their shortlisted product and then open the floor to questions. This exciting new format provides visitors to IFSEC International a detailed look at those products that are delivering a real benefit to end users, integrators and installers. Running alongside the Innovation Arena is the IFSEC International Innovation Trail which will help visitors easily access the new technologies that have come to market that will be featured at the show this year. A core theme running across IFSEC International this year is innovation, a key topic that both exhibitors and visitors kept coming back NICE Suspect Search - video analytics tool Highlights of the IFSEC International Innovation Trail include the NICE Suspect Search, a patent-pending video analytics tool that quickly locates and retraces the movements of a suspect, lost child, or other person of interest within a video surveillance network. Video footage from different cameras and time frames can be reviewed in just minutes, as the system automatically filters out 95 percent of irrelevant images. GP Systems will introduce their new palm vein identification technology at IFSEC International, an accurate and secure technology that makes it a perfect fit for the banking industry. RISCO HandyApp - smartphone application Additional confirmed participants in the Innovation Trail includes the RISCO HandyApp, the first smartphone application dedicated to supporting the sales and installation activities of professional security installers. The app allows installers working with RISCO products to increase their efficiency and sales potential by providing access to everything they need for a smooth installation. Vorty will launch the new Vorty Net smartphone operated access control system, a Bluetooth proximity reader that allows or denies a selected smartphone access to unlock any door electric strike, electromagnetic lock, automated garage door, motorised gate or barrier. Sony PXW-FS7 4k XDCAM camera Also Sony Professional, who recently won the Technology Innovation of the Year at the Digital Studio 2015 Awards in Dubai, will be showcasing the PXW-FS7 4k XDCAM camera that features a Super35 CMOS sensor capable of shooting in 4K Quad Full HD (QFHD) and super slow-motion Full HD. Avertic Armour - chainsaw protective textile Finally, Engtex AB will showcase its highly advanced textile Avertic Armour, developed from the No. 1 chainsaw protective textile, Avertic Pro+. This warp-knitted textile uses the world´s strongest fibre designed to withstand break-in attempts when heavy duty tools are used. These new products, plus many, many more, will make up the IFSEC International Innovation Trail; ensuring visitors can easily find all the groundbreaking technology and new products at the show. Gerry Dunphy, Event Director- IFSEC International states: “This year we really wanted to put new products, the latest technology and most importantly innovation at the very core of IFSEC International, the introduction of the Innovation Arena and the expansion of the Innovation Trail really highlights this. We are really excited to be shining a light on all the great advances that are currently being made within this industry and look forward to celebrating and showcasing these in June.” IFSEC International Innovation Trail which will help visitors easily access the new technologies that have come to market High-level expertise delivered by leading experts Along with all the innovation at IFSEC International there will be plenty of high-level expertise delivered by leading experts within the security industry and beyond. For 2015 IFSEC International launches its Inspirational Speaker Series with three high-profile personalities covering the sports, business and extreme adventure worlds, each of the keynote speakers have reached the pinnacle of their careers and will share their expertise and unique experiences with the IFSEC audience. In its inaugural year the Inspirational Speaker Series will host leading businesswoman Baroness Karren Brady CBE, the world’s greatest explorer Sir Ranulph Fiennes OBE and international cycling superstar Sir Chris Hoy MBE across the three days. Another popular education platform that will return in 2015 is Safe Cities, a stream at IFSEC International which will focus on the protection of larger urban areas, critical national infrastructure and business continuity. Suited for senior and strategic personnel responsible for the protection of major assets within a city, Safe Cities will provide high level thought leadership sessions to provide more insight into this fast growing concept. Networked technologies and current trends all feature heavily in the Safe Cities Seminar Theatre, exclusively sponsored by Eaton. Keynote address on ‘Safe, Smart and Connected Cities’ A taste of what visitors can expect within Safe Cities this year includes a keynote address from the Futurologist Dr. Simon Moores on ‘Safe, Smart and Connected Cities’ where he will look at emerging trends and technologies, the impact of big data and the Internet of Things along with the challenges and opportunities. Paul Adams the Director of Strategic Marketing, EMEA at Alcatel Lucent will host a session on ‘Transforming Public Safety with Smart Technologies and Secure Infrastructure’. Finally, Brian Kilkelly, the CEO of World Cities Network will host a seminar with the title ‘Improving the Resilience of Cities – the Application of Technology’, he will explore the opportunities from the availability of data and ever cheaper computing power to anticipate problems and coordinate resources. Safe Cities visitors to IFSEC International can access the full Safe Cities seminar programme and take advantage of the networking opportunities adjacent VIP Lounge, sponsored by Siemens. 2 new partnerships into Safe Cities Safe Cities will provide high level thought leadership sessions to provide more insight into this fast growing concept This year IFSEC International will also incorporate two new partnerships into Safe Cities, the first is with HyperCat, a leading consortium of major technology developers who are driving the standards of interoperability and they will be discussing their HyperCatCity Initiative at Safe Cities. The second exclusive partnership for Safe Cities is with Euralarm, the association that represents the electronic fire and security industry, who will run their own dedicated half-day conference called Smart Cities: Digital Solutions to Keeping Citizens Safe and Secure. The education programme at IFSEC International also incorporates the Keynote and Convergence Theatre; here leading players from across the security industry will debate the latest issues in cyber security or access control along with case studies and panel discussions around the state of the nation. Trends & technologies for video surveillance Sessions within this theatre include Jim McHale, Managing Director, Owner and Founder of Memoori Business Intelligence Ltd who will present on the Internet of Things in Buildings (BIoT) and the part security will play in this. Additionally, Atul Rajput, Regional Director (Norther Europe) for Axis Communications will look at the game changing trends and technologies for video surveillance in 2015 and beyond. Another highlight in the theatre will be a cyber-security master class from David Emm from Kaspersky Lab UK, in this session he will review the threat landscape in 2015, assess the malware evolution and give predictions for the future. The third education theatre within IFSEC International is the Security Solutions Theatre that will run seminars led by Will Lloyd the product development manager at BRE Global, Jim Swift from BB7 and Dave Tynan the VP at MicroPower Technologies amongst others. New additions to Gadget Zone In 2015, IFSEC International will also introduce some great new additions to some old favourites; the Gadget Zone will join the Security & Fire Installer Live feature. Research highlighted that visitors want to get hands on with the products before they buy and this will provide the perfect opportunity to try out the biggest and latest range of products in one place. Along with the new Gadget Zone, Security & Fire Installer Live will also incorporate the Toolshed in partnership with Anglia Tools, the Fire & Security Jobs Bar, the NSI Expertise Hub and Engineers of Tomorrow, amongst other activities. Protection & Management Series The education programme at IFSEC International also incorporates the Keynote and Convergence Theatre IFSEC International will once again be presented as part of UBM EMEA’s Protection & Management Series. The Protection & Management Series encompasses five major shows in related marketplaces covering safety, service management, facilities, security and fire, the overall ethos of the series is about protecting and managing buildings and places of work, along with the people and information within those places of work. The Protection & Management Series encompasses IFSEC International, FIREX International, Safety & Health Expo, Service Management Expo as well as Facilities Show, in 2014 the combined events attracted more than 40, 000 attendees over three days to London’s ExCeL.

ViDiCore GmbH’s PriVendo software deployed by Slovenian retail chain Merkur
ViDiCore GmbH’s PriVendo software deployed by Slovenian retail chain Merkur

Software counts customers in different areas and detects how long customers stay in store The Slovenian retail chain Merkur is one of the first to use ViDiCore GmbH’s PriVendo for a better customer understanding. Merkur trgovina, d.d. (Merkur trade, Inc.) is the Slovenian market leader in sales of home products and DIY, electro-installation materials, apparatuses and appliances, machinery and tools, ferrous and non-ferrous metal products, and industrial items for professional use. The 1896 established company based in Naklo (Oberkrain) operates various stores in Slovenia. Merkur´s mission is to provide high quality products and services to ensure customer satisfaction. New retail software PriVendo will help in management The Slovenian chain is already well known for its modern, well-stocked and shopper-friendly sales centers. Due to the wide variety of products, Merkur is able to meet customer demands successfully but for its management it is sometimes difficult to manage such a huge store. Several questions had to be answered to support all products and departments in the right way and to meet all customer needs: Do we have an adequate number of staff in all departments at the right time? Are all products placed in the right way? Which products should be supported through marketing campaigns? How successful was our last promotion? How many check outs should be open at what time? How effective are our shop windows? In which products are our customers most interested in? And so on. To answer all these questions easily and quickly, the new retail software PriVendo has been installed at Merkur. This software counts customers in different areas at different times and detects how long customers stay in store, in a department or in front of a product. Furthermore, it can differentiate if a customer is interested or even engaged in a product. Results are presented clearly in form of heat maps, hot spots, diagrams or tables. With these information queues can be managed, staff plans can be made, marketing campaigns can be evaluated and planned, products can be (re)placed, shop windows can be designed and a lot more. Improve customer satisfaction & realise new marketing campaigns After implementing PriVendo with the help of some 360° sensors Merkur could improve customer satisfaction significantly by replacing products and realising new marketing campaigns adapted to the requirements of their customers. Saša Percic – head of sales – confirmed that the results are very important for the marketing and human resource department as well as the sales team and management. Furthermore, Percic underlines the easy handling of PriVendo and the rapidly available results.

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