The Digital Sprite 2 from Dedicated Micros – Two products, one box
The Digital Sprite 2 from Dedicated Micros – Two products, one box

The new DS2 combines transmission with telemetry control and recording into one platform so there is no need for additional hardware when integrating a comprehensive CCTV solution. Furthermore, on-site operations have been enhanced with features such as DVD archiving and Duoview whilst maintaining the DS2’s familiar user interface.The combination of a user-friendly interface, remote management capability and leading edge features mean that the new DS2 can provide greater control and flexibility than ever before, and as part of the ‘NetVu Connected’ family the new DS2 is built to adapt to future advances in security technology.Advanced functionality includes: Remote Alarm Management - The new DS2 is now capable of integrating into a network based security system, with full support for Alarm Receiving Centres Improved recording flexibility - The DS2 has always provided useful facilities to control the amount of data that is recorded and ensure that there is sufficient capacity to meet the record durations customers require.  Improvements in the configuration of recording in the new DS2 allow even greater control and efficiency, while maximum storage has also been increased. Enhanced local control - The DS2 is renowned for its easy and intuitive local operation support. Improvements in local archiving, alarm display and image viewing make the new DS2 better than ever for the local operator. Investment protection - With total ownership of technology, DM has been able to support new developments in CCTV, while maintaining ongoing support for the traditional requirements for professional security installations. The new Dedicated Micros DS2 is available in 6, 9 and 16 camera variants, with the top of the range 600 GB model offering 2 months' out-of-the-box recording. 

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New DS2 Plus from Dedicated Micros – industry leading features with great price performance
New DS2 Plus from Dedicated Micros – industry leading features with great price performance

Dedicated Micros have released a product that includes all the familiar features of the Digital Sprite 2, but with double the record rate and more storage, dramatically improving its flexibility in high-end applications.  The DS2 Plus is capable of a market leading 100 PPS PAL / 120 NTSC record rate, and boasts a maximum storage of 600GB.  In addition – not only will DS2 Plus systems record longer, Dedicated Micros guarantee they will last longer too - all DS2 Plus models come with a three-year warranty as standard, covering both the units themselves and the hard disk drives.Record up to four cameras in real-time - DS2 Plus can record up to four cameras at 25/30pps each for capturing motion as fast as the eye can see.Increase event recording flexibility without wasting disk space - a doubled record rate will NOT automatically use up the available storage in double quick time, the extra record rate can be configured specifically to those cameras that enter alarm mode, without wasting disk space on cameras that are not alarmed.Two months standard recording - the new 600GB DS2 Plus model will record for over 2 months out of the box compared with the  54 days 500GB Digital Sprite 2 model.  This sets a significant new milestone in record duration for DS2 applications.An extra year’s peace of mind - DS2 Plus is backed by a full three years warranty covering all parts of the product including Hard Disk Drives.No learning curve - with no changes to the user interface or product dimensions used in the standard Digital Sprite 2, the 100/120PPS DS2 Plus dramatically extends the performance of the Digital Sprite 2 range while requiring no additional training.

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DM strengthens entry level DVR range with ECO9 launch
DM strengthens entry level DVR range with ECO9 launch

Dedicated Micros is launching Eco9, a 9-channel variant of its Eco family of DVRs which has consistently proved to be a popular option with smaller businesses such as convenience stores.  Interest in the new the Eco9 is extremely high and already Gardiner Security has signed-up to an exclusive agreement with DM to promote and distribute the Eco9 across the UK and mainland Europe. The Eco9 is priced to compete with traditional VCR/Multiplexer combinations, offering an affordable introduction to the benefits of digital recording for small, often independent, business owners, doing away with the tape management issues associated with traditional analogue CCTV solutions. As with the Eco4, which was introduced last year, the new ‘plug and play’ Eco9 has been designed with ease of use in mind, having been configured to time-lapse record straight out of the box by automatically detecting connected cameras on power-up.  Covert camera support ensures that staff pilferage can be minimised in a fast moving retail environment, and a spot monitor acts as a visible deterrent. The Eco9 can record a single camera in real-time (25/30 PPS) while at the same time playing back recorded images locally via powerful GOTO functions, or remotely through a PC using free network viewing software.  An integral CD writer is available for image export for evidential purposes, or if necessary images can be downloaded remotely over a company’s IT network, or internet. Pauline Norstrom, DM’s Marketing Manager said: “The introduction of the Eco9 gives users an enhanced choice providing a robust, high specification, entry level system, demonstrating that affordable does not have to mean cheap and ineffective.  Eco9’s extra channels mean that more cameras can be supported from the same unit offering future expansion, giving the small business owner peace of mind that they have chosen a reliable long term CCTV solution.”

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Dedicated Micros SD Excel a premium enterprise, hybrid DVR/NVR with Closed IPTV capability
Dedicated Micros SD Excel a premium enterprise, hybrid DVR/NVR with Closed IPTV capability

Dedicated Micros' SD Excel Closed IPTV Model is the perfect hybrid CCTV system product, designed to bridge the gap between legacy analogue camera estates and new IP and HD camera technology.The SD Excel is ideal for high end and critical infrastructure applications where there is a need to integrate high definition IP camera recording with standard definition images for general surveillance. Banks and Cash Handling institutions benefit from the ability to capture fast moving scenes in high risk area of their buildings where financial transactions are taking place or money is being deposited, together with images from general areas where there is less likely to be an incident. Controlled spaces, including waste management and recycling plants and critical infrastructure utilities sites, benefit from the product's capability to run video analytics on each channel, such as automatic number plate recognition, video trip wire or even video smoke detection. The analytics are seamless within the product, adding value to the video when combined with other site-specific data. The alarm integration features allow the product to be used as an integrated transmission device. When applied in a BS8418 compliant detector-activated solution the SD Excel is capable of being remotely monitored with the added benefit of support for bi-directional audio. Audio is an essential feature when used on remote sites, where valuable materials are stored externally, such as metal recycling plants and builders merchants. In practice a visually verified audio challenge ('talking CCTV') is sufficient to warn-off intruders in over 90 per cent of cases.SD Excel can be used as a standalone edge recorder, or as a completely hybrid NVR product. This means that it can be used in the central station or remote location, to decode and display multiple high definition streams to state of the are video walls without the need for a PC to control and manage video. The Industry has steered away from PC architectures due to their inherent instability and inability to redisplay multiple video streams.The SD Excel is supplied ready to be part of the next generation of video security - Closed IPTV solution, which makes deploying an IP Video CCTV system safe, secure and simple. Combining patent-pending innovation with zeroconf networking technology, Closed IPTV automatically allocates IP addresses to IP cameras by physical port. In this way the system is completely deterministic, creating firewalls and monitoring IP connections by individual network ports so they cannot be hacked or intercepted. This ground-breaking solution provides a very simple and secure answer to IP Video, meaning that no prior knowledge of IP networking is required. Sophisticated and Dependable network security can be achieved with a single click.SD Excel includes powerful new codecs with a Turbo Mode feature that ensures maximum per camera performance. Enabling Turbo Mode can effectively double the units performance allowing real-time recording at double the resolution simply with the press of a button. SD Excel offers real-time, full resolution recording per camera in a powerful hybrid DVR/NVR package that combines all the benefits of a DVR with the feature set of a high performance embedded NVR. It offers 32 channels of mixed IP and Analogue video, HDMI main monitor output, embedded decoder, on-board analytics, help videos and Oracle PTZ Dome, integrated configuration menus.

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16 camera, high performance DVR from Dedicated Micros
16 camera, high performance DVR from Dedicated Micros

The BX2 now includes the latest NetVu Connected technology, providing advanced networking functionality for professional remote alarm management today, and the flexibility to integrate with a wide range of distributed systems in the future.Improvements in recording flexibility ensure efficient recording, while the maximum storage capacity has been increased to 2TB to meet the needs of the largest installation.  The BX2 units come with an integrated DVD writer increasing the amount of evidence that can be taken away.In yet another industry first, the BX2 can now dynamically-switch between camera resolution, record-rate & compression settings using MultiMode Recording.  This is ideal for MPEG-4 background recording whilst simultaneously recording high quality JPEG images for evidence during alarm.The BX2 has also had many additional improvements to local operation based on customer feedback, while keeping its familiar and easy to use controls.Features in the BX2 include:Integrated DVD-Writer Simultaneous MPEG-4 and JPEG transmission and recording 100pps record rates MultiMode Recording Bi-directional audio Up to 2TB storage Compatibility with the latest release of NetVu ObserVer BS8418 compliance through tamper proof alarms, alternative signalling path and false alarm suppressionThe NetVu Connected BX2 provides top of the range performance and features combined with storage options to meet the most demanding large-scale installations.

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Dedicated Micros highlights seamless hybrid and IP video at ISC West 2011
Dedicated Micros highlights seamless hybrid and IP video at ISC West 2011

CCTV specialist Dedicated Micros - part of AD Group - showed off it's seamless hybrid and IP video capability at ISC West 2011 in Las Vegas. It also unveiled new IP video products, which expand the game changing Closed IPTV, deterministic, safe and secure IP video series. Highlights of the new patent pending Closed IPTV product lines include the entry-level EcoSense NVR (Network Video Recorder), hybrid SD Advanced NVR/DVR, layer 3 enhanced CCTV switch, and a series of ultra flexible IP cameras. Focusing on the EcoSense NVR, this pure IP video product, which was first shown at IFSEC in the UK in May 2010 contains a built-in Dedicated Micros Layer 3 enhanced CCTV switch, which provides safe and secure plug and play IP camera connection and recording, without any prior IP knowledge. Ecosense NVR overcomes the barriers in the way of traditional CCTV installers, who don't have the resources to re-train their engineers to become IT experts, enabling the installation of IP video solutions and bringing the benefits of high definition video to entry level applications. The Ecosense NVR contains the critical security features demanded in 24-hour surveillance applications including alarm integration and remote transmission features lacking in other NVR products. Moving on to the SD Advanced, hybrid NVR/DVR which, when coupled with the Layer3 enhanced CCTV switch, provides the perfect platform for legacy integration and completely secure, future expansion into IP video. The product supports up to 32 channels of IP video all of which can be megapixel cameras and like other Dedicated Micros products creates a seamless analogue and IP video solution managed from a single user interface - a key aspect of Dedicated Micros products for at least the last five years. Focusing on Dedicated Micros IP cameras, these comprise the CamVu Mini VR (Vandal Resistant) Dome, the CamVu Indoor Mini-Dome and CamVu box camera. Looking at these in turn, the CamVu Mini VR Dome combines High Definition image capture up to 2 mega pixel with a vandal resistant mini-dome housing, the potential - thanks to a built-in enterprise level video server - to support Integrated Camera Recording and Video Analytics plus wide-ranging network capabilities such as MultiMode Recording and Transcoding combined with both near side and off side storage capability. Closed IPTV compatibility also ensures that the Mini VR Mega-Pixel Dome can be set-up as a 'Trusted Endpoint' so protecting it from the dangers of hacking attack, especially when deployed in remote and vulnerable locations. Turning to the CamVu Indoor Mini-Dome, this 2 Mega-Pixel Closed IPTV capable camera delivers comparable features to the Mini VR Dome, aside from the absence of an environmental and vandal resistant housing, which is not required for indoor deployment. Said Pauline Norstrom, Director of Worldwide Marketing at Dedicated Micros: "We are delighted to showcase our very latest Closed IPTV surveillance products. The Mega-Pixel cameras we are unveiling tie-in very much with a growing demand for HD CCTV solutions, especially in high risk crime areas, where the combination of the detailed views provided by the cameras and optimised network security - with Closed IPTV - is proving to be an attractive proposition." "At the entry level we see the EcoSense NVR as an ideal starting point for security integrators who are looking at robust, embedded networked CCTV solutions for the first time or want a solution with reduced set-up time and enhanced ease of use. The fact that the EcoSense NVR is part of the game changing Closed IPTV means that a completely secure network of video over IP products can be readily created, where IP cameras are automatically identified and configured by the NVR as a point to point relationship - just like an analogue system. Once configured, the closed IP network can be totally locked down by a number of automatic firewall provisions and 'Trusted Endpoints' established without the need for any network knowledge." For more information on Dedicated Micros please log on to their website.

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Dedicated Micros launches market first in image archiving
Dedicated Micros launches market first in image archiving

The new BX2’s mirroring technology and easily removable drive caddies mean that customers can build archives of unlimited size and can remove up to two months of recorded data instantly – without having to power down or interrupt viewing or recording.With a total capacity of 1.2TB, arranged as two banks of 600GB mirrored (RAID1) storage, the BX2 is the ideal solution for customers who want to archive very large amounts of footage and for those who may need to transfer data to law enforcement agencies immediately.The four integrated RAID1 disks store two identical copies of all recorded data.  A pair of the disks can be removed directly from the machine at any time whilst recording continues unaffected.  This provides a failsafe backup is always in place should any disk fail.By regularly swapping out the RAID disk units, users can create continuous archives of unlimited capacity, without ever needing to pause recording or miss an event.  Once a unit is removed, a new one can be dropped in directly to maintain system performance. The easily-removable disk caddies also mean that there is no laborious copying to CD-R or DVD-R whenever video needs to be taken off the machine, minimising the potential for data loss and human error.  By providing a carbon copy of all recorded data, including its digital signature, there is no possibility of the information being lost or tampered with, critical for evidential  purposes.Data can be played back quickly and easily on any standard PC using an optional USB-connected caddie port and playback software, removing the need to invest in non-standard playback stations.

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Dedicated Micros introduces a feature packed DVR range with Telemetry
Dedicated Micros introduces a feature packed DVR range with Telemetry

The SD Range offers the user a high performance, easy to use plug and play DVR with selectable record duration providing up to 30 or 60 days recording. Now available in 4, 8, 12, 16 and 32 channel variants, the SD Range offers consistent recording duration and smooth motion video on ALL cameras. New "Normal, Medium and Low" recording models have been created which maintain consistent performance per camera, and off the shelf, guaranteed storage of up to 30 or 60 days. This allows the customer to build a CCTV solution that removes the need for extensive configuration. Menus allow per channel configuration to utilise full global PPS. Of course for those looking for more advanced features the SD's common user interface can be configured locally via its IR Remote Control/optional keyboard or remotely via web pages. Activity Detection, Alarm Reporting, Text support (for POS transactions), MultiMode Recording and of course Coax & Serial Telemetry are all included as standard in the SD Range. In addition, key variants in the range are able to take advantage of the advances in DM's software analytics programme. The AnalyticsCapable* technology recently introduced by Dedicated Micros will allow the user to deploy features such as ANPR, Object Left and Removed and People Counting to further enhance the value of their SD Range security solution. With the perfect combination of out of the box practicality and unrivalled levels of performance, the SD Range is the perfect mid-level DVR.

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Dedicated Micros introduces the Closed IPTV SD Advanced model
Dedicated Micros introduces the Closed IPTV SD Advanced model

A powerful hybrid DVR/NVR, the SD Advanced combines all the benefits of a DVR with the feature set of a high performance embedded NVR and offers multiple channels of IP and Analogue video, HDMI main monitor support, on-board analytics, help videos and Oracle Dome configuration.Powerful Hybrid DVR/NVRThe SD Advanced is a true hybrid DVR/NVR. Offering up to 32 camera connections in a combination of analogue or IP (including 3rd party IP cameras). Models in the series offer 8, 16 or 32 analogue camera connections, with the balance of the 32 camera connections being made up by IP camera streams - even higher definition devices such as megapixel cameras.Performance boost with Turbo modeThe latest generation SD Advanced includes powerful new codecs and the Turbo Mode feature that ensures maximum per camera performance. Enabling Turbo Mode can effectively double the units performance allowing real-time recording at double the resolution simply with the press of a button.Real-Time recording per cameraAll SD Advanced models can connect to up to 32 cameras - offering a blend of analogue and IP connections. Each camera can offer realtime viewing, recording and playback simultaneously.Closed IPTVThe SD Advanced is supplied ready to be part of the next generation of video security - Closed IPTV.Dedicated Micros' ground breaking Closed IPTV solution makes deploying an IP Video, CCTV system safe, secure and simple. Combining patent-pending innovation with zeroconf networking technology, Closed IPTV automatically allocates IP addresses to IP cameras by physical port. In this way the system is completely deterministic, creating firewalls and monitoring IP connections by individual network ports so they cannot be hacked or intercepted. This ground breaking solution provides a very simple and secure answer to IP Video, meaning that no prior knowledge of IP networking is required. Sophisticated and Dependable network security can be achieved with a single click.Leverage the powerful embedded NVR within the SD Advanced to incrementally grow your camera estate. Combine your existing installed analogue cameras with secure IP and HD cameras from a Closed IPTV system. Up to 32 camera streams can be connected enabling analogue and secure IP cameras to be shown together seamlessly. All that is required to take the next leap in video surveillance technology is Dedicated Micros unique Layer 3 Enhanced CCTV Switch and NetVu Connected IP cameras.Layer 3 enhanced CCTV switchUnlock the powerful features of Closed IPTV within the SD Advanced with the addition of our Layer 3 Enhanced CCTV Switch. The switch provides simple plug and play connectivty for Closed IPTV cameras and seamlessly integrates with the DVR for a perfect blend of secure analogue and IP camera connections. Directly connect 16 Closed IPTV cameras to the switch, cascadable up to 32 cameras with the addition of a second switch. Camera PoE is an option to reduce the need for additional cabling.Other features:Powerful Hybrid DVR with embedded NVRUp to 32 inputs in a combination of analogue or IPReal-time recording per cameraAchieve playback, recording & live viewing simultaneouslyForms part of a Closed IPTV system when used with a Layer 3 Enhanced CCTV SwitchHDMI Main monitor output for high definition displayHD IP Camera RecordingDouble the products performance with Turbo ModeUp to 4TB of local storage, expandable using MSUAnalytics CapableRecoding of 3rd party IP cameras and devices enables VMD and analyticsOn-screen telemetry control with Point&Go and Absolute PositioningOn-board Help VideosText support - capture, text and embed till, ATM or analytics data with the videoCoaxial Serial and IP Telemetry ControlMultiMode Recording - Dynamically-switchable resolution, record-rate & compression (MPEG4/ JPEG/H.264) per cameraBuilt in DVD-R writer and USB ports for archiving evidential materialTransCoding - High quality recording and simultaneous video transmission using MPEG4, JPEG or H.264 for playbackColor-coded soft key menus, identical local and remote interfacesUser customisable system map for multiple system managementPer camera polymorphic streams change resolution, bit rate and compression mid streamEmbedded Operating System

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Digital video recorders (DVRs) - Expert commentary

4 smart ways to use security to power the business of the future
4 smart ways to use security to power the business of the future

In the new era of work, our relationship with the workplace is defined by flexibility and mobility. Employees are working across the home, office, and blended spaces more than ever before, as well as working varied hours to suit the modern work schedule.  This new hybrid workforce model holds the potential for more diverse talent and better productivity, but it also comes with its challenges – one being how to ensure security, health, and safety in the workplace.  Strong and smart security ecosystem While nearly one-third of companies report that they’ve implemented a hybrid model, according to a recent survey by STANLEY Security, many still have much to do to prepare their office for the future.  Building a strong – and smart – security ecosystem is crucial in preparing for the future. As such, businesses should consider technologies that help protect their people, as well as safeguard their assets, optimise their operations, and secure their network. 1)Protect your people  Implementation of a security ecosystem combines health, safety, and security hardware and software solutions seamlessly Nearly 60% of mid-market and enterprise businesses across the UK and US report that the health and safety of their employees and customers are a primary concern when implementing modern and hybrid working models.  This begs the question: How can businesses create a safe and healthy work environment when 59% are planning to bring employees back on-site in some capacity within the next 18 months? The answer lies, in part, in the implementation of a security ecosystem that combines various health, safety, and security hardware and software solutions seamlessly. Integrating platform Nearly half (46%) of business decision-makers say they are interested in adopting an integrated platform such as this. This means integrating traditional and digital security solutions, then leveraging the data and insights they produce to further enhance the workplace experience. Take this example:  With employees and visitors moving in and out of the office at different times, a business may lack oversight of occupancy or density levels, people flow, workspace scheduling, visitor check-in processes, and more. However, with visitor management, access control, and other building/business systems integrated, employees can reserve a workspace for a specific date and time and be granted access to the building. Leveraging AI and machine learning Visitors can pre-register, answer a health screening questionnaire, and receive a mobile credential before arriving. Once the visitor arrives on-site, the system can alert the respective department – all without the close contact typically required for traditional visitor check-in processes. When layering artificial intelligence and machine learning on top of the data, a business may identify trends in people flow and opportunities to optimise congested areas. They may also see that certain rooms within the building get more use than others and leverage these insights to manage their space more effectively.  All of this is powered by a security ecosystem that can help a business better protect its people while realising other benefits in the process. 2) Safeguard your assets Businesses are concerned about the security of their assets when it comes to the hybrid workforce model Even more, businesses are concerned about the security of their assets when it comes to the hybrid workforce model. About 72% of leaders say this is, in fact, their primary concern with the hybrid approach.  This figure isn’t surprising when you consider the impact of the pandemic, which left many businesses closed either temporarily or permanently, with few people allowed on-site to manage facility operations.  As a result of the pandemic, we saw tech adoption accelerate at an astonishing rate – simply because businesses had to implement cloud and remote technologies to survive during a time when buildings were closed indefinitely.  Remote management and visibility This was particularly true for security solutions, such as cloud video surveillance and cloud access control solutions like wireless IoT-connected locks. Nine out of 10 businesses (91%) report that they have already implemented cloud security technology; of those, nearly half (48%) stated that this was due to the pandemic. These technologies allow for remote management and provide visibility into business operations at the same time. In a retail setting, for example, cloud video surveillance allows businesses to identify and track not only criminal activity, but also foot traffic patterns, peak operating hours, staff shortages, and more.  Loss prevention strategy When integrated with the retailer’s point-of-sale (POS) system, businesses can gain greater insights into their traffic counts, end cap effectiveness, loyalty card activity, and a variety of POS exceptions, such as high-dollar transactions, repeated transactions, excessive returns, employee discounts, and more. For retailers especially, a security ecosystem means a more efficient loss prevention strategy that helps safeguard assets and profits. 3) Optimise your operations The “future of work” is still very much a work in progress, but one thing is clear: Businesses are looking for ways to increase efficiencies, drive cost savings, and, ultimately, optimise their operations – especially now with the challenges posed by price inflation. A relatively untapped opportunity for businesses to achieve these goals lies within their security infrastructure. Security technology and solutions gather incredibly rich data which, when unlocked, can help businesses understand how their buildings are being used, when the busiest times are, where there are highly trafficked areas, and more.  Leveraging cloud video surveillance systems, businesses could identify emerging staff training needs Cloud video surveillance systems For example, by leveraging the insights produced by cloud video surveillance systems, businesses could identify emerging staff training needs, which could ultimately result in improved employee satisfaction and reduced attrition. However, much of this data sits untouched within the infrastructure, leaving businesses unaware of the opportunities in front of them. 44% of businesses that currently use a cloud security system for its primary use say they want to know how else this technology can be utilised, and an additional 20% aren’t even aware that it could be used in other ways. AI and analytics The interest in adoption is promising for the office of the future, especially when we see that the majority of businesses (78%) would consider using AI and analytics technologies to optimise their operations, helping their business to operate more effectively and efficiently.  The increase in adoption of cloud technology – paired with the rise in interest in AI, machine learning, and advanced analytics – could make it possible for businesses to uncover invaluable insights from their security infrastructure and leverage them to adapt and build business resilience. 4) Secure your network Advanced technology help businesses improve their cybersecurity, making it harder for hackers to gain entry With cyber threats becoming more prevalent, businesses are increasingly looking to secure their networks and protect their data. More than half (54%) of those surveyed expressed interest in using AI, machine learning, and advanced analytics to secure their network by identifying and eliminating cybersecurity threats.  Advanced and automated technology can help businesses improve their cybersecurity, making it harder for hackers to gain entry to the larger corporate network. Modern cybersecurity tools that use AI and machine learning can detect anomalies in network traffic or alert and act on suspicious behaviour.   Cybersecurity software For example, if an IoT device suddenly begins broadcasting and establishing connections with multiple devices, cybersecurity software could detect this abnormal behaviour, send an alert, and suspend traffic or quarantine an endpoint immediately – saving precious time during a potential breach.  A single data breach could result in widespread distrust from workers and customers, potentially leading to decreased business as well as litigation issues. As such, businesses need to take action to update and strengthen their defences so that they can avoid downtime and continue to operate with peace of mind.  Prepare your business for the future Businesses will continue to look for more ways to extract value out of their existing infrastructure, including their security technology. For many, the tools to do so are already in place, it’s just a matter of unlocking the insights with a security ecosystem.  With such an ecosystem – one that helps protect a business’ people, assets, and network, while optimising operations – companies can better safeguard the future of their workspaces and usher in the new era of work with confidence. 

How are new management systems innovating the hospitality industry?
How are new management systems innovating the hospitality industry?

Technology has certainly become an intrinsic part of our day-to-day lives, from the retail industry, to food and beverage outlets, and even within the health and fitness industry. It’s all around us, in varying formats, making processes more efficient. It has refined some of our older approaches, and in the hospitality industry, this is certainly true. Technological advances are leading the way forward for the future of hotels, and with the sector now free from COVID-19 restrictions, venues are looking for ways to improve the guest experience with technology. A staggering recent statistic has suggested that 75 percent of activities in hospitality could one day become automated — so where exactly are we heading on this journey into the future of hotels? Join Cairn Collection, owner of The Stirling Highland, and explore a whole host of innovations that are changing the face of hotel management systems. The 21st-century check-in desk The breadth of technology that is slowly becoming more widely available is transforming the hospitality industry The digital age is constantly finding new ways to innovate and prove its value and worth for modern consumers, and the breadth of technology that is slowly becoming more widely available is transforming the hospitality industry. In the past, connotations of a check-in desk were long queues and excessive pieces of paper — from room service menus to a mini catalogue of highlights of the local area. Technological innovations such as face recognition are one of the major ways that this process is changing. Using artificial intelligence A handful of hotels have already trialled or introduced artificial intelligence (AI) into their daily running, and it looks set to become far more mainstream by 2025. From paying the bill by using biometrics to allowing hotel managers to handle data more efficiently, AI looks set to be welcomed with the potential for it to reduce costs by 13 percent. The entire hotel check-in process could become automated, making one of the most established parts of the hotel experience redundant — but staff could be freed up to engage with customers, allowing them to get into their rooms quicker in the meantime. Many venues have even gone fully paperless when it comes to checking in, choosing instead to upload the process to cloud computing systems where information can be stored and viewed by connected devices. Convenience is the key More hotels operate their room unlocking facilities through mobile phone-connected technology, NFC After having checked in to a hotel, guests will want to explore the room that they’ve booked. Doing so has never been easier, and the classic magstripe locks which were once the most commonly used method of accessing hotel rooms are being progressively phased out. More and more hotels now operate their room unlocking facilities through mobile phone-connected technology, near-field communication (NFC).  This technology allows for data transfer at up to 424 kb per second, and it is enabled when connected devices come into contact with each other. Mobile key systems Most mobile key systems require guests to download and activate a key through the hotel’s digital app, and upon arrival, they can use the activated key to unlock the door to their hotel room. Combined with online/digital check-in services, guests can use the e-key to check in early or at a time that suits them best, knowing that they don’t have to wait around to pick up a physical key. Small touches like this build a sense of brand familiarity for customers, as well as streamline their hotel experience, and this distinguishes them from competitors. Hotel management systems Hotel management systems need to account for the experience that guests have while staying at the venue Of course, hotel management systems also need to account for the experience that guests have while staying at the venue and technology can do a lot to enhance this. Hotels have to innovate the spaces that they are presenting to their customers and technology has become a valuable asset to help enhance customer satisfaction, as the hotel room is certainly not simply a place for rest anymore. Voice-enabled devices Voice-enabled devices are becoming common features in rooms, with popular models such as Google Assistant, Apple’s Siri, and Amazon Echo providing guests with information on the local area — if you’re looking for the perfect backdrop to the business dinner you’re attending, just ask Alexa! Hotels could even record and distribute their personalised voice messaging to help reinforce the brand presence into the technology. Technology can help you attract and retain customers by offering services above and beyond what they’d usually receive A room and then some As the generational switch to millennials and Gen Z continues, the need for an experience has grown and, through a mixture of technology, hotels can cater to these revised consumer needs. From setting up messaging platforms to providing a remote control that monitors absolutely everything in the room — from atmospheric mood lighting to music streaming services and more, a hotel room can be whatever the user wants, and the experience is therefore generated by the customer. Technology doesn’t stop advancing, and there are constantly new, refined approaches to hotel management systems that have marked a stark departure from ways of the past. With guests returning after over a year of COVID-19 restrictions, competition for their business is even tougher. Technology can help you attract and retain customers by offering services above and beyond what they’d usually receive.

Why is key management so important?
Why is key management so important?

More and more business security practices are going digital. Mechanical keys are still the backbone of most corporate security plans, and it can be very expensive for companies to switch to electronic access control on a large scale. Therefore, enterprises need to choose the most suitable access control system. What is key management? Key management is the process of protecting, tracking, and scheduling mechanical keys. Why is this important? Because the key carries access to sensitive locations and assets within the organisation, when you increase the security of the key, you can enhance the security of these valuable resources. The key management system also controls the cost of using physical keys. The system reduces the overhead caused by key loss or security breaches. Some smaller companies may be able to adopt a paper-and-pencil key management protocol. Larger companies, or those who want to better understand and control keys, usually choose to use an electronic key management system. Key management systems can store and assign keys securely and increase the efficiency of organisation Why use a key management system? The key management system can become the cornerstone of your key control process. At the most basic level, key management systems can accomplish two things that paper and pen systems cannot: they store and assign keys securely, and they increase the efficiency of your organisation's use of keys through automation and analysis. What can key management systems do? 1) Improve access control By better protecting the keys, you can improve the access control to the spaces and devices unlocked by these keys. You can use your key management to simplify the process of providing temporary employees with one-time-key access. In addition, the system can record all their key access records, so that everyone's behavior can be traced. 2) Enhanced accountability traceability The software is a good key management system that can generate reports on key usage, user access requests, access exceptions, and loss. In addition, you can track and audit key usage in real-time. Combined with a comprehensive key control strategy, you will implement better accountability for key use to meet any industry or risk management compliance standards. 3) Reduce costs and prevent losses When an employee loses a key, you will incur direct costs for a replacement key or relocking it when it is lost When an employee loses a key, you will incur direct costs, including purchasing a replacement key or relocking it when it is lost. However, the indirect cost of key loss is usually more significant. This is because employees first spend time looking for the lost key and then process the replacement request, all of which time is not spent on production work. 4) Improve workflow As we discussed, keys are often used in important workflows. The key management system allows you to better control these workflows. A passive electronic lock system, also known as a key-centric access control system, has outstanding advantages in key management. Compared with the electronic access control system, the passive electronic lock system's "passive" characteristics have reduced the update cost for many enterprises.

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BSIA CCTV Seminar and Exhibition 2015: Exhibitors set to showcase innovative products
BSIA CCTV Seminar and Exhibition 2015: Exhibitors set to showcase innovative products

The exhibition will let delegates get hands-on with some of the most innovative products in the CCTV industry A number of companies involved in the design, installation and operation of CCTV systems will be exhibiting as part of a sell-out seminar in London next week. Organised by the British Security Industry Association (BSIA), the event will take place at London’s Emmanuel Centre on Marsham Street – close to the Houses of Parliament and Westminster Abbey – on Thursday 12th November. The seminar will cover a variety of interesting topics including the latest changes in surveillance legislation and technology, whilst also exploring recent developments in the CCTV sector. Running alongside the seminar, the exhibition will give delegates the opportunity to get hands-on with some of the most innovative products in the industry. Exhibitors that will be showcasing their products on the day include: ATEC Security ATEC Security is a specialist security systems integrator and winner of multiple Security Excellence Awards. The ATEC Difference is about creating value not only through security innovation, but also by ensuring security projects deliver financial, operational, staff and business intelligence benefits. ATEC take time to understand your issues, your operating environment and your business, and deliver reliable integrated solutions and support built around your operational requirements. They achieve unparalleled quality through meticulous design, comprehensive documentation and rigorous project management, with processes built around Home Office best practice. The portfolio includes some of the most advanced technologies available from carefully selected manufacturers. Find out why customers such as London City Airport, The City of Westminster and First Capital Connect, choose to work with ATEC by visiting their stand. Dedicated Micros The seminar will cover a variety of interesting topics including the latest changes in surveillance legislation and technology, whilst also exploring recent developments in the CCTV sector Dedicated Micros will be showcasing their latest cost-effective high definition IP and analogue product ranges. Based on a unique architecture, these solutions provide greater reliability, connectivity, interaction and performance across a seamless operating system. Visit Dedicated Micros’ stand at the CCTV seminar to find out how their latest products can help to secure business. Bosch Security Systems Bosch Security Systems supply quality and innovative security solutions. They will be showcasing some of their latest in-camera technologies. Starlight technology offers a new quality standard in round-the-clock video surveillance. Regardless of lighting conditions, time of day or object movement, cameras deliver incredible levels of detail even in extreme low light situations. Intelligent Video Analysis (IVA) assists by alerting you when pre-defined alarms are triggered and by smartly combining up to 8 IVA rules, complex tasks are made easy and false alarms are reduced. Their Content Based Imaging Technology (CBIT) offers 3 main features: Intelligent Dynamic Noise Reduction, Intelligent Auto Exposure and Intelligent Tracking: IDNR technology intelligently distinguishes between noise and relevant information, such as movement, this reduces bitrate by up to 50%. National Security Inspectorate NSI is the first choice certification body for the UK’s leading providers of security and fire safety services. Over 1800 organisations commit to rigorous and regular checks by NSI’s national network of qualified auditors who carry out in the region of 4000 audits per year, verifying compliance with relevant Standards and industry Codes of Practice. Buyers who choose to contract NSI approved companies can be assured of security and fire safety services delivered to the highest standards by businesses committed to excellence. NSI will be delighted to talk to visitors at the CCTV Exhibition and Conference about the benefits of contracting NSI approved companies. Observant Innovations Observant’s PATROL Camera System is a vehicle mounted 360-degree panoramic video camera. PATROL enables visual documentation of everything occurring in the vicinity of a patrol or tasking, ensuring that nothing is missed. The system captures everything, in all directions, all of the time and has been built to withstand tough environmental and usage conditions. Featuring 360-degree panoramic imagery, hi-res 14 MP video and stills imagery and a rugged IP67 form factor, the PATROL Camera System provides a number of benefits including public reassurance, greater impartiality and improved dispute resolution. Also exhibiting will be Dallmeier Electronic UK Ltd and Thorn Security Limited.

Private security industry - choose security providers that value quality over price
Private security industry - choose security providers that value quality over price

It’s dangerous to compromise on safety features in search of a low-cost security solution, as it can put employees at serious risk Driving quality in the private security industry is vital to the ongoing effectiveness of the products and services that the industry provides. Figures show that, post-recession, buyers are increasingly aware of the importance of quality when it comes to choosing security providers, with 20% citing quality over price as a crucial factor in their decision. Pauline Norstrom, chief operating officer for Dedicated Micros, a CCTV manufacturer, is a strong advocate of choosing quality over price when selecting a security provider. Norstrom, who is also chairman of the British Security Industry Association (BSIA), recently delivered a speech on the subject at IFSEC, the largest event for the security industry in London. Here, Norstrom shares her views with SourceSecurity.com about the potential hidden costs of low-price solutions. The issue of quality over price is a fundamental issue for businesses, operators, buyers and security providers to consider. When we talk about quality in the security sector, we are talking about the safety of employees, the public, assets and commercial outputs. I recently watched a television show featuring a car manufacturer. Its message was about choosing quality rather than a low-cost option – the analogy it draws is someone buying a cheap parachute. The person who buys the more expensive parachute is the person who drives the car that works. Would anyone buy a cheap parachute? I certainly would not. Directors have a statutory responsibility for the safety of their employees, as compromising this is not only a threat to a company's profitability, but could put them out of business This comparison emphasises the gravity of choosing between quality and price. Choosing a security solution based solely on the latter can put the safety of your employees at serious risk. Directors have a statutory responsibility for the safety of their employees, as compromising this is not only a threat to a company's profitability, but could put them out of business. Risk assessments and mitigating recommendations Before selecting a security product or service, a formal risk assessment must be carried out in order to reveal a business's vulnerabilities. This is a necessity, as ultimately the cost of loss has a direct effect on a company's bottom line. I speak on behalf of the BSIA in urging business owners or their delegated authorities to engage with reputable security specifiers to help them develop an operation requirement specification containing key risks and mitigating recommendations. As a result, the chosen security provider must respond with the best solution to minimise risk and satisfy needs. Typically, cheap systems do not minimise risk as they use non-compliant products and have non-compliant designs, and therefore miss important events. So, while procurement teams may have achieved their purchase price target, they have put their business at risk and not fully met its needs. Low cost offerings’ safety compromises Buying cheap can also result in a high cost of replacement and increased insurance claims. When you take these risks into account, are the savings really worth it? Given that the highest quality products are available in the market, why are compromises made in the private security industry? What are the reasons? Chief factors include a lack of bank lending and Government support for British companies, the global economic crisis (which created opportunities for low cost offerings to creep into the marketplace) and a lack of working capital – in some cases, it might be about cash as opposed to price. But we do know that buying cheap must result in compromises, because cheap is usually associated with taking something out. So how exactly do you define quality in the private security industry? And why does quality often cost more? As an illustrative example, let's say you have two offerings, both of which meet the basic requirements set out in the operational requirements specification. The cheap offering may scrape through on terminology as many requirements specifications are distilled down to the lowest common denominator. But, as opposed to higher quality offerings, the added functionality and benefits are all extra and companies face having to pay more further down the line. It may also be that training and operating procedures are not provided. Security tailored to specific needs A cheap product will merely provide a “one size fits all” service that is not tailored to the specific needs of a business. A quality offering is one that not only ticks all boxes but provides additional value benefits and offers measurable return on investment (ROI). Manufacturers should not provide CCTV solutions that simply meet elementary criteria. Products must provide maximum innovation over and above the basic requirements of a security solution. An end user or installer would pay more for quality solutions than for cheap offerings because they achieve fast response to preventable loss, reduce network vulnerability and offer extensive support and expertise throughout the life cycle of the product. This support can prove invaluable to a business in the long run. A principal reason you pay more for a quality product is that there is more investment into that product's development, which incurs cost in time and resource. Support and care during the life of the product and contract cost money, as does the training and development of staff. In return for this investment, you are able to grasp what the product can do for you and get exactly the solution you need. Buying cheap can also result in a high cost of replacement and increased insurance claims. When you take these risks into account, are the savings really worth it? To establish whether your provider has a high quality product or service, you need to ask several questions. Do they respond to customer's needs? Do they provide continual assessment and improvement programmes? Are they members of an industry association, such as the BSIA? The answers to these questions should give you an idea of whether or not your business has invested in a cheap or high quality option. When you are using a cheap security solution, loss is not always obvious as the costs are hidden. It might be that in-house staff are covering the deficiencies, or keyholders are called out unnecessarily, resulting in increased overtime costs. The costs may not measure truly what is the impact of a service on a business, so there needs to be a holistic view taken. Those who have this view are often directors or senior managers – otherwise the cost of ownership is little understood by buyers. Market knowledge and vulnerability awareness If you are involved in procurement of services, you need to have security market knowledge. Procurement teams must understand what makes a security provider different and better and who is responsible for business loss if something goes wrong. Business leaders must ensure their procurement teams are properly apprised and make sound recommendations based on industry knowledge. In the United Kingdom, this knowledge can be found within the BSIA, as it contains 18 discreet sections covering all areas of the security market, from access control to police to public services. These sections are designed to meet very specific requirements. So to conclude, it is my view that quality is far more important than price and compromises should not be made when it comes to security and safety. These are board room responsibilities and directors must be apprised to the risks and vulnerabilities. The way that procurement teams and owners and operators can protect themselves is by choosing a company which opts into quality, best practice and standards – a company that is different and ultimately better than the others. Low quality providers get away with offering cheap solutions if business owners take no interest, but this will ultimately come back to haunt the business as they will end up footing the bill.

BSIA's CCTV seminar and exhibition in London to highlight recent developments in the CCTV sector
BSIA's CCTV seminar and exhibition in London to highlight recent developments in the CCTV sector

The event enables CCTV manufacturers and installers to showcase their latest technological developments A popular CCTV seminar and exhibition is set to arrive in London this November, and will provide an opportunity for CCTV companies to reach out to delegates from a range of organisations including local businesses, civic authorities and the Police. Organised by the British Security Industry Association (BSIA), the event will take place at London’s Emmanuel Centre on Marsham Street – close to the Houses of Parliament and Westminster Abbey – on Thursday 12th November, and is expected to follow on from the success of a series of CCTV seminars held by the Association over the past couple of years, which have served to highlight the appetite for information regarding CCTV best practice among end-users and security buyers. A limited number of exhibition spaces are available at the event, enabling CCTV manufacturers and installers to showcase their latest technological developments, while an informative seminar will explore the latest changes in surveillance legislation and technology, while exploring recent developments in the CCTV sector. Confirmed speakers at the event include: Tony Porter LLB QPM, Surveillance Camera Commissioner Detective Chief Inspector Mick Neville, Central Forensic Image Team, Metropolitan Police Pauline Norstrom, Chief Operating Officer at AD Group / Dedicated Micros and Chairman of the BSIA Simon Adcock, Managing Director of ATEC Security and Chairman of the BSIA’s CCTV section James Barrett of Safer London The event is kindly sponsored by the British Standards Institute (BSI). The BSIA expects the event to attract around 150 delegates from a number of organisations across the South East, for whom admission will be free of charge. Meanwhile, exhibitors will benefit from the following: 1 table with electrical connection Refreshments / lunch (for 2) Company logo on the programme for the day Inclusion in pre and post event promotion, including press releases, email marketing and social media activity A copy of all delegates’ contact details, sent post-event The opportunity to promote attendance at the event via the BSIA’s YouTube Channel

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