In the past year, ONVIF prepared the release of two new profiles, Profiles Q and A, which are currently in Release Candidate status, being fine-tuned by developers from member organisations. They are ONVIF’s fourth and fifth profiles, with Profile Q addressing easy set-up and advanced security features and Profile A encompassing daily tasks for access control. ONVIF also hit major milestones in 2015, reaching the 5,000-conformant product mark and maintaining a membership of more than 500 members, which include manufacturers, consultants, integrators and media members. 

In addition, ONVIF held two successful Plugfests in 2015: one in June hosted by Underwriters Laboratories, Inc. in Durham, N.C. and a second hosted by Dahua Technology in Hangzhou, China, in November. Both events included multiple testings of ONVIF conformant video, access control and edge devices

ONVIF Profiles Q and A 2016 final release

In looking ahead to 2016, ONVIF is excited about its work on developing a new video profile that will incorporate recent technological developments. The final release for Profiles Q and A are also slated for 2016. ONVIF will be an exhibitor at trade shows such as Intersec 2016 in Dubai, ISC West and at specifier- and consultant-centric gatherings such as the International Association of Security Professionals 2016 conference in April. We will continue to work hard at engaging our existing members and will reach out to potential members who can offer valuable contributions to the development of future ONVIF profiles.

Interoperability demand to rise in 2016

At a broader level, 2016 will likely see a rise of the smart city, which will bring interoperability to new heights. We may also see other industries enter the physical security industry, as our industry’s potential role in IoT becomes more apparent across markets. Though I am obviously biased, I think interoperability will be the major trend of 2016 in the security industry. There is so much unrealised potential in integrated systems that I think the power of multiple integrations will be exploited more fully in the coming year. The call for all physical security systems to share one interface will remain strong in the coming year, which is an idea that is at the very centre of ONVIF’s mission and work.

In the world of international standards, this year the ONVIF specification was officially adopted by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). The IEC is a non-profit, non-governmental international standards organisation that creates and publishes international standards for all electrical, electronic and related technologies. That means the ONVIF specification is now part of a world-wide, internationally recognised global standard, which likely will be significant as the Internet of Things grows in strength and industries use IEC standards in their manufacturing to facilitate interoperability across industries. This is “kind of a big deal,” as the saying goes.

See the full coverage of 2015/2016 Review and Forecast articles here

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Author profile

Per Björkdahl Chairman, ONVIF

Per Björkdahl is Chairman of the ONVIF Steering Committee and leads standardization activities. He also serves as Director of Business Development at Axis Communications AB. Mr. Björkdahl is responsible for the development of new areas of business based on the Axis product portfolio, including identifying new vertical markets and developing strategic plans for the sales organization. Mr. Björkdahl joined Axis in 1999 as Global Sales Director with responsibility for sales development of the Axis new product group, Network Video.

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Managing security during unprecedented times of home working
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As a result, the problem of attacks died back.  But as companies race to get people working from home, they must ensure special care is taken to ensure the patches are done before switching VPNs on. That’s because remote desktop protocol (RDP) has been for the most part of 2019, and continues to be, the most important attack vector for ransomware. Managing a ransomware attack on top of everything else would certainly give you sleepless nights. As companies race to get people working from home, they must ensure special care is taken to ensure the patches are done before switching VPNs on Hackers are waiting for a wrong move amongst the panic, and they will look for ways to compromise critical serversExposing new services makes them also susceptible to denial of service attacks. Such attacks create large volumes of fake traffic to saturate the available capacity of the internet connection. They can also be used to attack the intricacies of the VPN protocol. A flow as little as 1Mbps can perturbate the VPN service and knock it offline. CIOs, therefore, need to acknowledge that introducing or extending home working broadens the attack surface. So now more than ever it’s vital to adapt risk models. You can’t roll out new services with an emphasis on access and usability and not consider security. You simply won’t survive otherwise. Social engineering Aside from securing VPNs, what else should CIO and CTOs be doing to ensure security? The first thing to do is to look at employee behaviour, starting with passwords. It’s highly recommended that strong password hygiene or some form of multi-factor authentication (MFA) is imposed. Best practice would be to get all employees to reset their passwords as they connect remotely and force them to choose a new password that complies with strong password complexity guidelines.  As we know, people have a habit of reusing their passwords for one or more online services – services that might have fallen victim to a breach. Hackers will happily It’s highly recommended that strong password hygiene or some form of multi-factor authentication (MFA) is imposedleverage these breaches because it is such easy and rich pickings. Secondly, the inherent fear of the virus makes for perfect conditions for hackers. Sadly, a lot of phishing campaigns are already luring people in with the promise of important or breaking information on COVID-19. In the UK alone, coronavirus scams cost victims over £800,000 in February 2020. A staggering number that can only go up. That’s why CIOs need to remind everyone in the company of the risks of clickbait and comment spamming - the most popular and obvious bot techniques for infiltrating a network. Notorious hacking attempts And as any security specialist will tell you, some people have no ethics and will exploit the horrendous repercussions of CV-19. In January we saw just how unscrupulous hackers are when they started leveraging public fear of the virus to spread the notorious Emotet malware. Emotet, first detected in 2014, is a banking trojan that primarily spreads through ‘malspam’ and attempts to sneak into computers to steal sensitive and private information. In addition, in early February the Maze ransomware crippled more than 230 workstations of the New Jersey Medical Diagnostics Lab and when they refused to pay, the vicious attackers leaked 9.5GB or research data in an attempt to force negotiations. And in March, an elite hacking group tried to breach the World Health Organization (WHO). It was just one of the many attempts on WHO and healthcare organisations in general since the pandemic broke. We’ll see lots more opportunist attacks like this in the coming months.   More speed less haste In March, an elite hacking group tried to breach the World Health Organization (WHO). It was just one of the many attempts on WHOFinally, we also have bots to contend with. We’ve yet to see reports of fake news content generated by machines, but we know there’s a high probability it will happen. Spambots are already creating pharmaceutical spam campaigns thriving on the buying behaviour of people in times of fear from infection. Using comment spamming – where comments are tactically placed in the comments following an update or news story - the bots take advantage of the popularity of the Google search term ‘Coronavirus’ to increase the visibility and ranking of sites and products in search results. There is clearly much for CIOs to think about, but it is possible to secure a network by applying some well thought through tactics. I believe it comes down to having a ‘more speed, less haste’ approach to rolling out, scaling up and integrating technologies for home working, but above all, it should be mixed with an employee education programme. As in reality, great technology and a coherent security strategy will never work if it is undermined by the poor practices of employees.

How does audio enhance security system performance?
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Video is widely embraced as an essential element of physical security systems. However, surveillance footage is often recorded without sound, even though many cameras are capable of capturing audio as well as video. Beyond the capabilities of cameras, there is a range of other audio products on the market that can improve system performance and/or expand capabilities (e.g., gunshot detection.) We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How does audio enhance the performance of security and/or video systems? 

How have standards changed the security market?
How have standards changed the security market?

A standard is a document that establishes uniform engineering or technical criteria, methods, processes, and/or practices. Standards surround every aspect of our business. For example, the physical security marketplace is impacted by industry standards, national and international standards, quality standards, building codes and even environmental standards, to name just a few. We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: How have standards changed the security market as we know it?