Larry Anderson's Security Beat

U.S. partial government shutdown: what's the impact on the physical security industry?

Security is arguably at the heart of the United States partial government shutdown: President Trump’s demand for $5.6 billion to start building a wall along the southern border with Mexico is the major bone of contention as gridlock in Washington prevents passage of a spending bill to keep the government in full operation. The partial government shutdown has affected security in other ways, too, and some of the impact could continue long after the impasse is settled. Some 800,000 federal...

Adapting servers for IP video surveillance systems: Why manufacturers struggle

Security integrators are often tasked with a multitude of responsibilities which could include a variety of installation, integration or design tasks made up of sprinkler systems, fire alarms, access control, HVAC, video surveillance systems and networks; and then pile on maintenance, training and analytics. Traditionally, most security integrators have installation backgrounds but are now expected to be IT savvy, too. Even the most proficient IT professionals may not fully grasp the complexity...

Openpath seeks to simplify the mobile access control experience

How’s this for a simple access control scenario? You walk up to a door, wave your hand in front of a button, the button lights up, and the door opens. That’s the simplified user experience that startup Openpath is promoting as it enters the crowded and mature market for physical access control. Openpath says a simple user experience provides the extra boost needed for mobile credentialing to gain momentum. In this case, it’s even simpler than using a card credential (no s...

Innovation dominates CES 2019 in new security technologies

Security is among the defining topics at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2019 this week in Las Vegas. More than 4,500 exhibiting companies are participating, including some 1,200 startups, highlighting the next wave of innovation in consumer electronics – and security. Twenty-four product categories at CES feature solutions to transform how consumers live, work and play. Technologies being highlighted include 5G connectivity, artificial intelligence (AI), augmented and virtual reality...

Balancing the scales: how Open Options acquisition complements new owner ACRE

Open Options, based in Addison, Texas, provides a truly open access control architecture that will strengthen the ACRE portfolio and increase the breadth of solutions offered by the global provider of security systems. The acquisition of Open Options is also an opportunity for ACRE to focus on growth opportunities in North America and “balance the scales a bit,” says Joe Grillo, CEO of ACRE, which significantly grew its reach in Europe, the Middle East and Africa with the acquisitio...

The Security Event 2019: a new security event to reconnect UK commercial security industry

There is a new event on the calendar for the security industry in 2019: The Security Event 2019, 9-11 April, at NEC, Birmingham. For additional details and a preview of the new trade show and conference, we spoke with Tristan Norman, Founding Partner and Event Director, The Security Event. Q: It seems recently that some trade shows have been on the decline in terms of exhibit size and attendance. Why does the physical security industry need another trade show? Norman: I think there are numer...

Is the physical security industry doing enough to prevent school shootings?

School shootings continue, as does a search for answers. What solutions are there to prevent school shootings and/or to improve the response (and thus minimise the death toll)?  In the physical security industry, we like to think we have solutions that can help, if not “solve”, the problem, but realistically speaking, how effective are they at the end of the day? We like to think we have solutions that can help, if not “solve”, the problem: but how effective ar...

Why regional? Inside ADT's mergers and acquisitions of US security integrators

ADT Inc.’s acquisition of Red Hawk Fire & Security, Boca Raton, Fla., is 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.  Here’s a quick rundown of integrator companies acquired by ADT: Protec, a Pacific Northwest commerc...

Intellectual honesty: the growth of Cobalt Robotics and robots in security

The best route to greater adoption of robotics in the field of physical security is intellectual honesty, says Travis Deyle, CEO and co-founder of Cobalt Robotics. “Robots are not a panacea, so we must be clear and honest about capabilities and use cases,” he says. “If you are dishonest, people will lose faith. We must have clear expectations about what’s feasible today and possible tomorrow.” The robotics tide is turning in the security market, which is notoriousl...

Further acquisitions in the pipeline for parent company ACRE

One of the biggest recent security divestitures in the news was the sale of Mercury Security to HID Global, which occurred around a year ago. The seller in that transaction was ACRE (Access Control Related Enterprises), also the parent company of Vanderbilt and ComNet. We recently spoke to founder and CEO Joe Grillo, a 30-year industry veteran, about the mergers and acquisitions (M&A) market, ACRE’s future, and new opportunities opened up by the Mercury sale. Q: What’s new wit...

Growth of ISC East in New York, becoming must-attend show

ISC East is making a name for itself as a must-attend regional conference and trade show in New York City that brings together the large community of law enforcement and private sector security professionals from the Tri-State area. ISC East, being held Nov. 14-15 at New York’s Javits Center, is emerging from the long shadow of its sister show – ISC West in Las Vegas in the spring – and making its own mark on the industry. ISC East is 20% larger than last year, and exhibitors...

Impact of GDPR expands beyond the EU to the rest of the world

The initials GDPR have become synonymous with the need for companies within the European Union to provide consumers greater transparency and better control over their personal data. The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has also increased awareness of privacy concerns around the world. It’s not the only factor highlighting a need for greater privacy – high-profile privacy breaches by companies such as Facebook are also driving the trend. But GDPR’s global impact canno...