Many of the most well-trafficked articles posted at SourceSecurity.com in 2015 were those that addressed timely and important issues in the security marketplace. In the world of digital publishing, it’s easy to know what content resonates with the market: Our readers tell us with their actions; i.e., where they click.

 

Let’s look back at the Top 10 articles we posted in 2015 that generated the most page views. They are listed in order here with the author’s name and a brief excerpt. 

1. Video analytics applications in retail - beyond security [Larry Anderson]

Analytics can help catch suspects by alerting in real-time. After the fact, analytics used for search purposes are far more effective to identify a theft. Secondly, analytics can be used in retail to track customers, understand their age and gender, manage queue lines, know how long people dwell at an end cap, provide heat maps, etc.

2. Cybersecurity - hackers target SCADA embedded systems [Vicki Contavespi]

“SCADA monitors devices on the grid many times per second and was never intended or designed to have virus protection or security protocols,” says Dave Hunt, an independent homeland security consultant and a founding member of the National InfraGard Electromagnetic Pulse special interest group. In fact, continuous monitoring makes it virtually impossible for a SCADA system to validate a security protocol.

3. Home automation standards and protocols [Randy Southerland]

As the home automation industry has expanded with an ever-growing number of devices and services, companies are placing bets on which wireless protocols will dominate. The past few years, the leaders have been Z-Wave and ZigBee. Companies are also using a variety of other standards including Crestron’s Infinet, Insteon, and proprietary technologies such as Lutron’s ClearConnect.

Prism Skylabs uses software as a service for their IP cameras in retail
Readers were interested in Prism Skylabs' retail applications, utilising IP cameras as sensors to gather data on customer behaviour   

4. The numbers tell the video story at ISC West: 4K and H.265 [Larry Anderson]

The latest in video surveillance equipment at ISC West [in 2015] is reflected by the numbers you hear repeatedly on the show floor, numbers like 4K and H.265. Big players like Panasonic have joined the 4K bandwagon in a big way. Sony introduced a 4K camera with a larger sensor size (1-inch) to increase light sensitivity, displaying the better view alongside a “Brand X” competitor in the Sony booth.

5. Video analytics: Prism Skylabs envision IP cameras as sensors to expand their role in retail [Larry Anderson]

Prism Skylabs is helping to drive a re-evaluation of the role of video cameras in the market. Founded in 2011, the San Francisco cloud service company thinks of IP cameras as sensors that are capable of providing a range of data that can be managed and processed in the cloud to provide more useful information to end-user customers. Prism’s current implementations of the “software as a service” approach focuses on retail merchandising and marketing applications, but Prism Co-Founder and Senior Vice President Bob Cutting sees many other opportunities too.

6. Video analytics for forensics: Analytics-based forensic evidence collection [Larry Anderson]

Another aspect of video analytics is how the technology can be used for forensics. Basically, intelligent searches of video archives provide investigators faster access to any needed video clip based on the content of the video. It’s a monumental improvement over the old days of searching for hours while rewinding and fast-forwarding videotape.

7. IP video surveillance market – revealing the ‘industry standards’ myth [Mark Collett]

Considering the state of the IP surveillance industry, standardisation would likely drive vendor consolidation and force companies to evolve in order to succeed. Many industries have successfully implemented standards – including energy, telecommunications, consumer electronics and aerospace. These are all vibrant industries; standards have not driven any of them to extinction, as some in the security industry believe they would.

Protecting public figures, such as the Pope, was a topic of interest
Another topic of interest was the public and private protection of public figures, spurred by the Pope's visit to America earlier this year   

8. Physical Security Information Management (PSIM) – the death of an acronym? [Larry Anderson]

Lately, we have even begun hearing manufacturers starting to avoid the PSIM term and its historic baggage and preconceptions. When a buzzword takes on a negative stench, it loses its impact. If a PSIM is perceived as negative, the initials lose their usefulness even as a marketing term (which some say PSIM was all along).

9. Avigilon acquires fundamental patents covering video analytics [Larry Anderson]

What are the ramifications when a major supplier in the video analytics space owns many of the patents that are fundamental to its competitors’ businesses? It’s one thing to pay licensing fees to a fading player like ObjectVideo (perhaps to avoid costly litigation?), but isn’t paying those fees to a direct competitor another matter?

10. How public and private security operations protect celebrities, big-name executives and dignitaries [Michael Fickes]

According to the Secret Service, dozens of federal, state and local agencies combined forces to protect the Pope in his visits to Washington, D.C., Philadelphia and New York City. The Department of Homeland Security designated the Papal visit to New York City a National Special Security Event. For such an event, the Secret Service acts as the lead federal agency for the design, implementation and oversight of the operational security plan.

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

Share with LinkedIn Share with Twitter Share with Facebook Share with Facebook
Download PDF version

Author profile

Larry Anderson Editor, SecurityInformed.com & SourceSecurity.com

An experienced journalist and long-time presence in the US security industry, Larry is SourceSecurity.com's eyes and ears in the fast-changing security marketplace, attending industry and corporate events, interviewing security leaders and contributing original editorial content to the site. He leads SourceSecurity.com's team of dedicated editorial and content professionals, guiding the "editorial roadmap" to ensure the site provides the most relevant content for security professionals.

In case you missed it

Managing security during unprecedented times of home working
Managing security during unprecedented times of home working

Companies are following government guidance and getting as many people as possible working from home. Some companies will have resisted home working in the past, but I’m certain that the sceptics will find that people can be productive with the right tools no matter where they are. A temporary solution will become permanent. But getting it right means managing risk. Access is king In a typical office with an on-premise data centre, the IT department has complete control over network access, internal networks, data, and applications. The remote worker, on the other hand, is mobile. He or she can work from anywhere using a VPN. Until just recently this will have been from somewhere like a local coffee shop, possibly using a wireless network to access the company network and essential applications. CV-19 means that huge numbers of people are getting access to the same desktop and files, and collaborative communication toolsBut as we know, CV-19 means that huge numbers of people are getting access to the same desktop and files, applications and collaborative communication tools that they do on a regular basis from the office or on the train. Indeed, the new generation of video conferencing technologies come very close to providing an “almost there” feeling. Hackers lie in wait Hackers are waiting for a wrong move amongst the panic, and they will look for ways to compromise critical servers. Less than a month ago, we emerged from a period of chaos. For months hackers had been exploiting a vulnerability in VPN products from Pulse Secure, Fortinet, Palo Alto Networks, and Citrix. Patches were provided by vendors, and either companies applied the patch or withdrew remote access. 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?
How does audio enhance security system performance?

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?